The ATO over the years has become quite adept at using information gathered from a variety of sources to identify taxpayers who are under declaring or avoiding their taxation commitments. A recent announcement reveals the latest step in this process.
With the Federal Election earlier this year, many proposed laws or budget concepts that did not get passed prior to the election were scrapped. One such proposal related to a superannuation amnesty for small business. This proposal has once again been introduced into Parliament and if passed is something employers should strongly consider taking up.
The ATO has released its tax debt data from the 2019 financial year and it provides grim reading for small business owners. Once again small businesses represent the highest tax debt level amongst different tax paying groups with one in five small businesses on average having entered into a payment plan with the ATO over the last year. The tax debt owed by small businesses increased to $16.5 billion which is substantially higher than that owed by privately owned and wealthy groups ($5.6 billion) and public and multinational companies ($1.1 billion).
With the October deadline for lodgement of personal tax returns passing, the ATO has released the new annual lodgement figure obtained through the myTax software. This software enables taxpayers to lodge their own returns without needing the services of a registered tax agent.
The ATO has announced that with the 1 October deadline for those businesses under 20 employees to start reporting through single touch payroll, that it will now start getting in touch with tax and BAS agents whose clients have not begun reporting. This correspondence will be sent in mid-October with the ATO then to begin contacting employers directly from February to May 2020.
The ATO has recently made a change to its Super Fund Look Up page policies which could have a significant sting for SMSFs. From 1 October 2019 an SMSF will have its registration details removed from the Super Fund Look Up site if it has an annual tax return outstanding with the ATO for more than 2 weeks.