The ATO has advised that on 23 October 2009, it mailed a letter titled "Lodgment alert for your clients' overdue income documents" to 5,000 tax agents. The letter listed companies, trusts, partnerships, individuals and superannuation clients with any overdue income tax returns and/or activity from 1 July 2005 to 30 June 2008.
The letter advised recipients that if the overdue income tax returns are not lodged by 4 December 2009 the ATO will commence to issue default assessments based on the information available to it. Some of these letters may have been sent direct to clients.
The ATO is seeking agents' help to ensure that all clients complete and lodge all outstanding documents as soon as possible. If clients do not need to lodge, the ATO would appreciate immediate advice.
If any clients have stopped using an agent's services, the ATO asks that they delete them from their client list using the Tax Agent Portal or electronic lodgment service (ELS) and provide new address details where possible.