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29 Aug 14 ATO Tax Practitioner Advisory Group – Tax Time 2014

On Tuesday 26 August 2014, Tax Counsel Thilini Wickramasuriya ATI attended a meeting of the ATO Tax Practitioner Advisory Group to discuss issues arising during Tax Time 2014. 

The main points discussed in this week’s meeting were:

  • ATO noted that 77% of dividend pre-fill data was available at the time of the meeting. Members expressed some surprise that, in late August, some data was still missing. ATO noted that the obligation on the providers was to make pre-fill data available by the end of October. 
  • ATO is continuing to encourage tax practitioners to use electronic services where available rather than contacting the ATO call centres. 
  • Voice biometrics have been introduced for approximately 50% of ATO call centres but is only available for individuals, businesses and super funds at this stage. Members expressed some disappointment that the service was not available to tax practitioners. The ATO noted the difficulty of offering the service to tax practitioners as they do not have a record of the employees of each firm who would be calling the ATO on behalf of that firm. ATO is looking for solutions to this issue but could not give an estimate of when the service could be available to tax practitioners.  
  • Members noted that there was no easy electronic way for tax practitioners to change the bank account details for an individual client after the tax return is lodged. The individual is able to update these details themselves through MyGov. 

The key messages from the meeting as circulated by the ATO should be available via the link below shortly.

https://www.ato.gov.au/Tax-professionals/Prepare-and-lodge/Tax-Time-2014/

Members seeking further information in relation to the above or any other issues relating to Tax Time 2014 should contact us at taxpolicy@taxinstitute.com.au.