Treasury revises down estimated JobKeeper cost by $60 billion

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The ATO and Treasury have released a joint statement advising that the previous estimate of the number of employers who would access the JobKeeper program was significantly overstated. Treasury now estimates the number of employees covered under the JobKeeper program to be around 3.5 million (down from a previous estimate of 6.5 million). The estimated cost of […]

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Warning to watch out for myGov and ATO tax scams

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The government’s Stay Smart Online website warns there has been a surge in scammers impersonating myGov and the ATO to trick people into giving them money or personal details. These scams can take the form of emails, text messages and fake myGov login pages. In June 2019, the ATO received 6,444 reports of tax-time scams […]

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ATO reminds SMEs about paying super for backpackers

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The ATO has reminded businesses that employ backpackers that they may need to pay superannuation guarantee (SG) for them. Backpackers on working holidays are considered temporary residents, and are entitled to superannuation guarantee if they are paid $450 or more before tax in a calendar month. Once they leave Australia, they can claim the super […]

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Ombudsman calls on ATO to cease small business recovery action where tax disputes are before AAT

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The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) has issued a report into the ATO’s enforcement of debt recovery. In a press release, the ASBFEO called for the ATO to immediately cease debt recovery action where tax disputes were before the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT). The report contains three key conclusions and seven recommendations. […]

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How the ATO identifies wealthy individuals and their businesses

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The ATO uses sophisticated data matching and analytic models, drawing on tax returns and referrals from other government agencies or the community, to identify wealthy and high wealth individuals and link them to associated businesses. Given the importance of this group to community confidence in the tax and super systems, the ATO says it has […]

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Shortfall penalties reduced under new ATO initiative

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The ATO has heard from community and tax professionals that people should have a chance to correct their mistakes when they get their tax wrong, provided there isn’t dishonest intent behind their errors, and is taking a new approach that seems to be having positive effects. Under this new approach, if the ATO finds an […]

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Guidance on when a company carries on a business

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With reduced company tax rates available for some businesses in recent years, and changes in eligibility for capital gains tax (CGT) small business concessions, it’s become increasingly important for us to understand how the law and the ATO deal with concepts like “small business entity” and “carrying on a business”. New guidance is now available […]

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ATO to ramp up ABN investigations and cancellations

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As part of the ATO’s work to ensure the integrity of the Australian Business Register, it investigates the business activities of Australian Business Number (ABN) holders when it seems their ABN is no longer being used – for example, if business income isn’t being reported, or where the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) deregisters […]

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Compensation for defective ATO administration: review announced

Mr Robert Cornall, a former Secretary of the Attorney-General’s Department, will lead a review of the Scheme for the Compensation for Detriment Caused by Defective Administration (the CDDA Scheme). The CDDA Scheme allows Commonwealth Government agencies (including the ATO) to pay discretionary compensation when a person or an organisation suffers as a result of defective […]

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ATO small business benchmarks updated

The ATO has released its latest small business benchmarks, providing over 100 different industries with average cost of sales and average total expenses. Businesses can see clearly what the relevant benchmarks are for their industry. The benchmark data is drawn from over 1.5 million small businesses around Australia. Business owners can use the benchmarks to […]

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