The Tax Practitioners Board (TPB) has now issued draft Tax Agent Services (Specific BAS Services No. 2) Instrument 2020, which seeks to expand the scope of BAS services to include additional services relating to the superannuation guarantee charge (SGC) that are not currently covered by the current legislative instrument.
While BAS agents may already provide some services relating to the SGC, including advising on and preparing an SGC statement, the new legislative instrument looks to expand on what the TPB views as a BAS service.
The changes will allow BAS agents to lawfully advise about an SGC liability, including the calculation of the SGC and preparing the SGC statement; and be an authorised contact for payment arrangements, requesting penalty remissions and for any audit or review activity undertaken by the Commissioner of Taxation relating to SGC accounts.
BAS agents will also be allowed to advise about the offsetting of late payments of superannuation contributions against the SGC, including completing the late payment offset election section of the SGC statement; representing a client in their dealings with the Commissioner of Taxation, including the lodgement of SGC statements; being an authorised contact in relation to the superannuation guarantee and SGC accounts, and accessing the superannuation guarantee and SGC accounts in online services.
The move comes after the TPB announced it was reviewing BAS services in March, noting that BAS agents assisting clients with the superannuation guarantee amnesty would not face any compliance action.
The TPB said the change came after it identified in early 2019 that BAS agents representing a client in their dealings with the Commissioner of Taxation were limited to services insofar as they related to a payroll function or payments to contractors, and therefore, did not extend to representing a client in their dealings with the Commissioner of Taxation in relation to the SGC.
BAS agent services were also recently expanded to allow agents to legally assist clients with the JobKeeper payment and cash-flow support measures in response to COVID-19.
The changes will commence on the day after it has been registered, with the TPB currently inviting stakeholder feedback on the draft legislative instrument by 13 July.
Jotham Lian is the editor of Accountants Daily, the leading source of breaking news, analysis and insight for Australian accounting professionals.
Before joining the team in 2017, Jotham wrote for a range of national mastheads including the Sydney Morning Herald, and Channel NewsAsia.