ATO chasing down late returns, unpaid PAYG instalments before year end
The ATO has ramped up its activity on SMSF late lodgments and unpaid PAYG instalments in recent weeks, in some cases requesting a response from trustees in two business days, warns BDO.
Speaking to SMSF Adviser, BDO national leader, superannuation Paul Rafton said in recent days there has been an increase in calls from the ATO to trustees and their practitioners regarding both late lodgments and instalment activity statements
“I suspect they’re wanting to get it front of mind for trustees before Christmas,” said Mr Rafton.
Mr Rafton said the ATO has been contacting SMSF trustees even where they’re only behind on their latest instalment activity statement.
“They’re following up quickly and wanting trustees to pay it before Christmas,” he cautioned.
In terms of lapsed lodgers, Mr Rafton said the ATO is chasing both trustees with late returns for multiple years and those who are yet to lodge their return for the 2021–22 financial year.
The ATO is generally asking for a response within two business days, he warned.
“That doesn’t mean a payment but it does mean a response or a return call or even leaving voice message within two business days,” he said.
“The ATO want to know what the trustee intends to do.”
Speaking at a CA ANZ conference in October, Mr Micale warned that the non-lodgment of SMSF annual returns would continue to be major focus for the ATO.
Mr Micale stated there were around 24,000 funds that hadn’t lodged a first return and a further 80,000 lapsed lodgers with one or more outstanding returns in his speech in October.
For the 2020–21 year specifically, around 67,000 returns still needed to be lodged as at 20 October.
Mr Micale said the ATO had been reminding trustees of their lodgment requirements through targeted bailouts.
“Whilst this does deliver positive results for the majority of trustees, there is a persistent group who continue to ignore our reminders,” he said.
The ATO has been deploying its three strikes letter campaign for these trustees, he warned.