ATO updates process for requesting non-binding advice
With the ATO closing its professional-to-professional (P2P) mailbox in late December, the Tax Office has advised SMSF auditors on how to contact the ATO when seeking interpretative assistance.
In an online update, the ATO said it is simplifying the way tax and super professionals engage with the Tax Office when seeking interpretative assistance or advice.
“If you’re seeking interpretative assistance, you can access our range of guidance and self-help products,” the ATO stated.
Alternatively, if SMSF professionals require tailored technical and interpretative assistance for a specific individual or group of taxpayers and their query cannot be resolved online, they can contact the ATO by:
- Secure mail in Online services for business if they’re a business or SMSF auditor
- Secure mail in Online services for agents if they’re a tax practitioner
- Phone on 13 10 20 (8.00am-6.00pm, Monday-Friday)
The ATO stated that Online services for business is better as it keeps a continuous record of their inquiries, keeps them informed and simplifies the process, which will mean a faster report to inquiries.
“We’ve updated our superannuation enquiries page to show you the new way to lodge enquiries,” the ATO said.
In late December last year, the ATO closed its professional-to-professional (P2P) mailbox that was used by SMSF auditors to request non-binding guidance.
“Any enquires received before the close will be actioned using our previous process,” the ATO noted.
“If you’ve lodged an enquiry using the P2P mailbox over the last few weeks, you will have received an automatic reply with simple instructions on how to lodge your enquiry using Online services for business.”
The ATO also reminded SMSF auditors that it’s decommissioning the electronic superannuation audit tool (eSAT) at 12am on 1 March 2022 and that they will need to switch to Online services for business.
“Online services for business is a new and secure way of managing your tax and superannuation obligations which can be used on multiple devices,” the ATO stated.
“To switch, simply log in or sign up for Online services for business through our website. If you are new to our services, you may need to set up your myGovID and link it to your Relationship Authorisation Manager (RAM).”
The ATO is planning to make updates to the Online services for business tool, which include the ability to prepopulate auditor details into ACR and ACA forms, improved messaging with prompts to download a copy of an ACR onto a device and increasing the number of draft ACR forms an auditor can save and how long they can be saved for.
“We’ll email SMSF auditors to let them know when they must make the switch. But there’s no need to wait – transition to Online services for business now and familiarise yourself with the new way to lodge your ACRs and ACAs,” the ATO said.
Emma Ryan is the deputy head of content at Momentum Media and editor of the company's legal publication, Lawyers Weekly.
Emma has worked for Momentum Media since 2015 and has been responsible for breaking some of the biggest stories in corporate Australia. In addition, she has produced exclusive multimedia and event content related to the company's respective brands and audiences.
A journalist by training, Emma has spent her career connecting with key industry stakeholders across a variety of platforms, including online, podcast and radio. She graduated from Charles Sturt University with a Bachelor of Communications (Journalism).