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17 Dec 1010 On ATO's refusal to issue refunds

MEMBER 373 writes:

"I love reading Member Feedback as it gives me that warm fuzzy feeling that can only be felt when you are loved. At times I feel I am bashing my head against a brick wall when dealing with the ATO but then TAXVINE comes out and I know that there are hundreds, if not thousands of frustrated tax agents out there dealing with an insensitive, ignorant organisation called the ATO.

Two examples of the intelligence (or lack thereof) encompassed by the ATO.

Tax return lodged 6/8/2010. Refund generated to the client's tax account 15/8/2010. The refund is still sitting there. Two requests have been made to the ATO, on 15/10/2010 and 10/12/2010, to have the money paid to the client. No comment from the ATO.

An even better example is that during the rush to get the $900 bonus we had a client (several in fact) that lodged more that 10 years of returns.

In this instance a return lodged for 2002 contained an error which resulted in a larger than expected refund. An amended return was lodged to adjust the overpayment. Even though the 2002 return had only been lodged the previous month, the ATO mantra was that you can only amend returns that are less than 2 years old, the 2002 return could not be amended. We double checked with the ATO, even advised them that the client had been paid a refund to which he was not entitled. Tough, it was all too hard for the ATO. No way could they amend a return that was more than 2 years old. We gave the Client a copy of the ATO letter and told him to keep the excess refund as the ATO did not want it back.

It is very apparent that having given away so much of the taxpayers’ money this Government is now broke and has instructed the ATO to delay as long as possible any tax refunds. If you try to ring the ATO you have to press a dozen buttons before the computer tells you it is busy and then hangs up on you.

I agree with Member 363 in last week's TAXVINE - see 2010 TAXVINE No 50 (10 December 2010) - it is nice to get a view from the other side (Member 358).

Perhaps the new blood is in favour of everyone lodging their own return so that there will be no one left who understands the intricacies of the tax act.

Thanks again to TAXVINE."

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