ATO to consult further on Single Touch Payroll

Single Touch Payroll, ATO consultationFollowing the announcement of delays in the implementation of Single Touch Payroll the ATO is engaging in a further round of consultation.

Single Touch Payroll was announced by the Government as a measure to reduce red tape for employers, and is meant to report employee PAYG Withholding and superannuation information at the same time as payroll transactions. It may also include payment of these amounts at the same time as salary and wages.

However the start date of July 2016 was unrealistic and the Government announced a delay to allow for further consultation.

“Feedback told us that the start date of July 2016 and the proposal for real time payment of pay as you go withholdings (PAYGW) would not be achievable for many businesses and would have cash-flow implications particularly for small businesses,” said the ATO.

The ATO says it has been “working closely” with businesses and software developers since Single Touch Payroll was first announced in late 2014, to understand the impacts it would have.

ATO senior executives are meeting with business representatives of software developers for further consultation.

Topics for this consultation include the compulsory real time reporting of payroll information to the ATO and voluntary real time payment of PAYG Withholding and superannuation guarantee amounts.

Groups involved in the consultation include:

  • Affiliation of Superannuation Practitioners
  • Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia
  • Australian Business Software Industry
  • Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry
  • Australian Industry Group
  • Certified Public Accountant Australia
  • Corporate Tax Association
  • Council of Small Businesses of Australia
  • Institute of Certified Bookkeepers
  • Institute of Chartered Accountants Australia
  • The Tax Institute

The ATO will also be conducting pilot programs with small businesses from July 2016.

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