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  • Writer's pictureUHY Haines Norton

ATO Warning for Employers – Meet your Superannuation Obligations

By Tina Zawila

 

The Australian Taxation Office recently announced that it is expanding its use of data (gathered via Single Touch Payroll (STP) to “help employers meet their superannuation guarantee (SG) obligations”.


One of the ATO’s key focus areas in their Corporate Plan 2022-23 was to expand the use of STP data.  The ATO can essentially create a view of employees’ SG data provided by superannuation funds and employers in one place.  And in the words of the ATO “By doing so, we can follow up employer non-compliance more proactively”. 


From March 2024, the ATO will conduct what they call a “small nudge letter pilot” where they will contact a limited number of employers by letter to encourage them to comply with their SG obligations.  These employers will be selected on the basis that they appear to have outstanding SG obligations for the 1 April 2023 to 30 June 2023 quarter and the 1 July 2023 to 30 September 2023 quarter, according to the STP and fund data reported to the ATO.



The letter will provide a timeframe to lodge SGC statements and instructions on how to pay any amounts owing if there is an SG shortfall for the relevant quarter. Employers who don’t agree with the information in the letter can call the ATO to discuss their concerns and address any discrepancies in reporting. Employers who don’t respond to the letter may be escalated for compliance action.


In this digital age, data available to the ATO plays a pivotal role in ensuring taxation compliance and employment obligations are met.  With the rise of technology and interconnected systems, the ATO has gained unprecedented access to data sources, facilitating more efficient and effective enforcement of tax laws.


STP data is now a critical component of the tax and superannuation systems and is being used by the ATO in real time for several purposes.  Therefore, it’s vital that employers understand and meet their payroll obligations both in terms of reporting and payment and that they keep good records.


Big brother is watching and it’s easier than ever for the ATO to identify non-compliance.  Do not ignore your obligations, seek help if you need assistance with reporting or payment.


If you need help with employment, taxation or superannuation obligations, call the professional team at UHY Haines Norton CQ on (07) 4972 1300.

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