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19 Sep 14 On emailing documents to the ATO (and other matters)

MEMBER 143 writes:

"Some 12 to 18 months ago we had to email critical documents to the ATO. The email left our office but then bounced. Anyway we eventually got the documents to the ATO via a quick sprint. The email size exceeded 10MB.

This week the ATO wanted documents again for another client. Our client sent us the documents. The size of the email exceeds 10MB. We receive it. However in trying to send the client’s email to the ATO, you guessed it, it would not go through. It seems the ATO still can’t receive emails that exceed 10MB.

I kindly pointed out the difficulty to the ATO officer, who in a most tactful way suggested the problem has been raised but nothing has been undertaken to rectify it. It is sad to say that outside of creating the Portal (when it works) the ATO’S attempts at technology rate at less than a D-. Searching for information on the ATO’S website is well…difficult. It definitely earns an A for frustration.

By the way, have you ever tried to complete an application for an extension of time to lodge using the ATO’S antiquated version of, I presume, ‘Word’. Just painful!

Finally, here’s a thought. How about the ATO being assessed on its technology being useful 85% of the time, 24 hours, 7 days a week. We the primary users, those in the tax industry, get to decide if the benchmark has been achieved. If it is not achieved, then the benchmark of 85% lodgment of tax returns on time be reduced accordingly. It won’t happen because the ATO could never accept the challenge.

PS 24 hours, 7 days a week, because how many of us are working exceedingly long hours to meet the 85% lodgment requirement? Too many I suspect. Who cares about the damage it causes to health, family life etc? Certainly not the politicians, Treasury nor the ATO.

Anyway what goes around comes around."