The tax office recently announced the date by which superannuation funds must comply with the SuperStream contributions data standards has been pushed back to 1 July 2015.
Speaking to AccountantsDaily’s sister publication, SMSFAdviser, the ATO's national program manager, data standards and e-commercise (SuperStream) Philip Hind said the tax office is concerned super members could “read too much” into the recent announcement, and that the extension should not act as a reason to delay being SuperStream ready.
“It is important trustees get in place the arrangements sooner rather than later and certainly don't leave it until the last minute,” Mr Hind said.
“They are likely to run into problems with getting it completed on time, or not being able to implement it, and then they are going to face the potential non-compliance issues.”
Mr Hind also noted there is a staggered start to SuperStream on the employer side, noting some super fund members may not be able to make use of SuperStream’s extended deadline.
“Small employers don’t have to start implementing until 1 July 2015, whereas large and medium-sized employers need to begin this year from 1 July 2014,” Mr Hind said.
“So depending on whether a trustee is working with a large, medium or small employer will dictate whether they can in fact wait until after 1 July next year.
“So really the key dates are the kick off date, 1 July 2014 for large and medium employers, and our advice is that you really need to have your plans in place well before Christmas this year so you don’t find yourself being caught out in the last-minute rush."
The ATO is not expecting any further delays to SuperStream implementation, Mr Hind said, with the final legal instrument now published.