The ATO says that while many businesses have good systems in place, some small businesses occasionally need additional assistance to meet their tax obligations. ATO Deputy Commissioner, Steve Vesperman, said assistance is available on the ATO website, with the new Small Business Assist External Link tool available for all Australian businesses, as well as the new ATO mobile app.

The Deputy Commissioner said the annual business perceptions survey, run for the ATO, shows that almost all small businesses “think it’s important that businesses pay their fair share of tax”. However, he said there are some businesses that deliberately gain an unfair advantage over other businesses by not accounting for GST or by making fraudulent claims.

Mr Vesperman said the survey also showed that the majority of businesses “support maintaining fairness in the tax system” with around 2/3rds agreeing that if they knew someone was evading paying tax, they would report this to the ATO.

With the help of extra funding this year to strengthen the ATO’s detection systems, Mr Vesperman said action will be taken against non-compliant operators that don’t do the right thing by Australian business”. He said the key to staying on track is to be as up-to-date as possible with tax obligations.

Source: ATO release, 22 January 2014

[LTN 14, 22/1/14]