The ATO will conduct an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) pilot using in-house facilitation to resolve smaller and less complex indirect tax objections such as substantiation and penalties. The pilot will run over two stages between November 2012 and April 2013. Stage 1 is by invitation only; it commenced in November 2012 and is limited to approximately 10 indirect tax objection cases dealing with GST, excise, fuel tax credits, luxury car tax and wine equalisation tax issues only. Stage 2 will be by ATO invitation or taxpayers can apply.
For this pilot, ADR will be an informal process designed to assist taxpayers and the ATO to resolve tax issues with the assistance of an in-house facilitator who has not been involved in the dispute and who is impartial and independent. The facilitator will agree to be bound by a code of conduct and all discussions will remain confidential.
The pilot will test the effectiveness of resolving smaller disputes by an impartial and independent in-house facilitator. The facilitator works with taxpayers and their representatives to reach an outcome about some parts of or the entire objection.
The following information is available: