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SMSF collectable debt, contraventions on the rise, ATO confirms

By Legal
01 November 2022 — 1 minute read

The tax office’s annual report highlights some of the recurring issues for funds.

Non-disputable tax debt owed by SMSFs rose by one-third in 2021-22, according to the ATO’s annual report released yesterday, which also confirmed the rise in contraventions reported in SMSF Adviser last week.

The annual report revealed the tax performance of the 603,000 SMSFs, which dwarf the superannuation sector numerically compared with the 1,224 APRA-administered small funds and 206 large.


The ATO bracketed super in with its other compliance efforts and revealed SMSF collectable debt rose to $400,000 in 2021-22, up from $300,000 the year before.

Another negative involved contraventions reported by approved SMSF auditors compared to the total number of lodging SMSFs, which rose to 2.8 per cent from 2.6 per cent in the previous year.

“We continued to promote our early engagement and voluntary disclosure service to encourage SMSFs to address regulatory contraventions before we commenced compliance actions, with nearly 900 disclosures this year,” the ATO said.

Speaking at a recent event, ATO assistant, SMSF risk and strategy, Justin Micale pre-empted the report’s finding but noted the relatively high 97 per cent of the lodging SMSFs without contraventions from their audit.

Mr Micale said the ATO was currently working with ASIC to reshape the approach of its compliance program for SMSF auditors to become “more real-time and differentiated”.

Also in the annual report, the ATO revealed that 118 SMSFs had been subject to an audit related assessment in 2021-22 and when it came to settlement cases, it pursued 71 and recovered $1.2 million, or just 20 per cent of its goal.

The ATO said it had worked to implement superannuation-related legislative changes during the year, resulting in positive impacts for the client experience, including:

  • - reducing the eligibility age for downsizer contributions.
  • - removing the $450 per month threshold for super guarantee eligibility.
  • - repealing the work test for voluntary superannuation contributions.
  • - relaxing actuarial certificate requirements.
  • - ensuring increased visibility of superannuation in family law proceedings.

And it had worked closely with APRA funds to sustainably implement the SuperStream Rollovers version 3 initiatives.


SMSF collectable debt, contraventions on the rise, ATO confirms
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Philip King

Philip King

Philip King is editor of Accountants Daily and SMSF Adviser, the leading sources of news, insight, and educational content for professionals in the accounting and SMSF sectors.
Philip joined the titles in March 2022 and brings extensive experience from a variety of roles at The Australian national broadsheet daily, most recently as motoring editor. His background also takes in spells on diverse consumer and trade magazines.
You can email Philip on: [email protected]au 
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