The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) is encouraging small businesses that have overdue income tax returns, fringe benefits tax returns or business activity statements to take advantage of a new amnesty to get their lodgements back on track.
The amnesty was announced in the 2023-24 Budget. It applies to tax obligations that were originally due between 1 December 2019 and 28 February 2022 and runs from 1 June 2023to31 December 2023.
To be eligible for the amnesty, the small business must be an entity with an aggregated turnover of less than $10 million at the time the original lodgement was due.
During this time, eligible small businesses can lodge their eligible overdue forms and the ATO will then proactively remit any associated failure to lodge (FTL) penalties.
When forms are lodged with the ATO under the amnesty, businesses or their tax professionals will not need to separately request a remission of FTL penalties.
All you need to do is lodge your outstanding tax returns or activity statements and the ATO will take care of the FTL penalty remission from their end.
The ATO encourages all businesses to lodge any overdue forms even if they are outside the eligibility period. Whilst forms outside the amnesty eligibility criteria will attract FTL penalties, the ATO will consider your circumstances and may remit such penalties on a case-by-case basis.
The ATO offers a range of support options, including payment plans. Many small businesses are also able to set up their own payment plan online.
The amnesty applies to income tax returns, business activity statements, and fringe benefits tax returns. It does not apply to superannuation obligations and excludes other administrative penalties such as penalties associated with the Taxable Payments Reporting System.
More information is available on:
ATOSmall BusinessTax obligations