11 Jul 088 More on ATO mailouts and pre-fillingLast week Member 3 commented on the waste of resources when ATO mailouts for taxpayers (specifically, their annual HELP and Financial Supplement Loan statements) were sent care of their tax agent: see 2008 TAXVINE No 26 (45) (4 July 2008).
MEMBER 3 writes: "I wholeheartedly endorse Member 3's suggestion re ATO mailouts; however, I also recommend superannuation co-contribution statements be added to the list. It is an administrative burden and cost we can do without."
MEMBER 4 writes: "Now that the 2008 Pre-filling Report includes the amount of the HELP & SFSS debts, I support Member 3's suggestion that these Notices should be posted directly to the client. In the past, it was useful to know who had these debts but now I can see no reason why Tax Agents should receive the paper reports.
The Pre-filling Reports for 2007 gave us certainty in dealing with the ATO. Differences in data were resolved before the Income Tax Return was lodged. From my perspective, my practice is running more efficiently & the clients are happy with the new system.
2008 is shaping up even better. Medicare is working well & my practice will be even more efficient as I don't have to wait for clients to obtain their Medicare statements to come in the mail. However the new system is showing more detail of what the ATO holds & which may not be correct. No matter what detail I put on the tax return in regards to Date of Birth, Name of Account in financial details and daytime phone number, the ATO uses its own data & someone's typo is proving difficult to amend.
As any change to details via the Tax Agent's Portal can be tracked by the ATO, please can this be simplified so Tax Agents can amend typos?"