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In media release No 2012/004, issued 14 March 2012, the Assistant Treasurer and Minister Assisting for Deregulation, David Bradbury, announced the release of the Inspector-General of Taxation's Review into the ATO's administration of class rulings dated September 2011.

In the review, the Inspector-General examined information, systems and processes relating to the ATO's administration and publication of class rulings over the five year period between 2006-07 and 2010-11.

The Assistant Treasurer said:

"Overall, the Inspector-General observed that the class ruling system is a useful element of the tax system because, amongst other things, class rulings effectively mitigate operational costs and reduce risk by providing greater administrative certainty to relevant taxpayers. However, he also acknowledged that there were areas for improvement.

In this regard, the Inspector-General made eight recommendations in the Report, which are directed at improving the administration of class rulings' processes and related areas. This included case management, reporting, record keeping, external performance standards, communication, transparency, Australian Taxation Office (ATO) staff awareness of existing procedures and policies and the ATO's Siebel system search functionality.

The ATO broadly agreed with all the Inspector-General's recommendations in the Report (agreeing with six recommendations in full, one in part, and one in principle)."


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