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Tax Office issues SG amnesty disqualification warning

Tax Office issues SG amnesty disqualification warning

The ATO has warned businesses who have qualified for the superannuation guarantee amnesty to pay their dues or risk disqualification.

The Tax Office has begun reaching out to businesses that made SG amnesty disclosures to remind them to pay their disclosed amounts or to set up a payment plan and meet each ongoing instalment amount.

The warning letter notes that businesses will have 21 days to avoid being disqualified from the ATO.

Businesses who are disqualified will be notified in writing of the quarter they are disqualified for, be charged an administration component of $20 per employee for each disqualified quarter, have their circumstances considered when deciding a Part 7 penalty remission, and be issued with a notice of amended assessment.

The ATO also notes that tax practitioners are able to use online services for agents to help their clients set up a payment plan if their clients have an existing debit amount under $100,000, does not already have a payment plan for that debit amount, and has not defaulted on a payment plan for the relevant account more than twice in the past two years.

Practitioners unable to set up a payment plan online have been urged to contact the Tax Office for a tailored solution.

The ATO reminder comes about four months after the amnesty was shut on 7 September 2020.

The six-month amnesty window came into effect in early March at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, sparking calls from the professional accounting and tax bodies for the government to consider a six-month extension.

Despite the competing priorities faced by businesses grappling with the economic conditions, and their advisers focused on assisting clients with the various government support measures, the extension failed to materialise.

The ATO has also since outlined its post-SG amnesty approach, reflecting a change in law that limits the commissioner’s ability to remit the Part 7 penalty applied as a result of an audit.

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