The Australian Taxation Office has launched a new campaign that aims to help Australian businesses meet their tax obligations in 2014.
The social media and promotional campaign hinges on three New Year’s resolutions the ATO says businesses should adopt to help them stay on top of their tax obligations.
“[The campaign] provides business owners with practical tips to increase awareness of their tax rights and obligations and make it easier to comply,” the ATO states.
Such tips include paying tax debt promptly, giving your business regular health checks, and adopting better tax habits.
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Stephanie Caredes, tax counsel at The Tax Institute, tells SmartCompany that businesses should find out now when their lodgements and payments are due for the year, and then seek assistance where needed to help them understand and manage these obligations.
“There is the potential for penalties and interest being incurred if lodgements and payments don’t go in on time,” she says. “That’s why you should find out when your lodgement dates are due so you don’t accidentally miss them and incur unnecessary costs.”
The ATO website can be a very helpful resource in this regard, Caredes adds.
“There are lots of helpful tools for small businesses on the ATO website. Things like the business viability tool, all sorts of calculators, and details about lodgement dates. That makes the website a good first point of call.”
The ATO’s New Year tax resolutions
Resolution 1 – lighten your tax debt weight in 2014.
- Avoid penalties and interest by lodging and paying on time.
- Contact the ATO if you can’t pay on time.
- Keep the GST you collect separate from your business account.
Resolution 2 – give your business a health check.
- Check your systems and records are in order to avoid mistakes on your BAS.
- Leave paper behind and keep records electronically.
- Use the ATO’s business viability tool on ato.gov.au to help assess the financial performance of your business.
Resolution 3 – better tax habits.
- Don’t be afraid of the ATO – ask for help and boost your business performance.
- Always lodge your BAS on time even if you don’t have anything to report.
- Avoid the paper shuffling – lodge your BAS on line.