ATO encourages use of tax agents

With the countdown to tax time deadlines now on, the ATO is encouraging taxpayers who have yet to submit their returns to approach registered tax agents.

ATO assistant commissioner Graham Whyte has issued a general public reminder to individuals who have still not completed their tax returns to do so before the 31 October deadline.

Data indicates that 7.8 million people have lodged so far, and the ATO has issued 5.9 million refunds.

“But there are still millions of taxpayers yet to lodge,” Mr Whyte said.

This financial year, the ATO is encouraging those submitting tax returns to go through a registered tax agent. The reason for this is that most registered tax agents are able to lodge a return on behalf of their clients after the 31 October deadline.

Mr Whyte reminded taxpayers that if they are using a tax agent for the first time, or using an alternate agent to the previous year, they must be in contact with them prior to the submission deadline.

Those due a refund can generally expect to receive it within two weeks after their return is lodged. Mr Whyte also encouraged those who had noticed a mistake or error within their return to contact the ATO by lodging an amendment.

Debt payment was also addressed by Mr Whyte, who urged those concerned with receiving a tax bill to not put off lodging a return and that “if you’ve got a debt you can also make a payment or create a payment plan”.

Those who do lodge will know exactly what they owe and have the same amount of time to pay, regardless of the submission date. The deadline for debt payment is generally 21 November.

The ATO finally reminded those who may be experiencing issues with their tax payment obligations to contact them as soon as possible and make sure to still lodge by deadline.

 

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