ATO tackling the black economy in Cranbourne

The ATO will be in Cranbourne on Tuesday February 19thproviding guidance to legitimate small businesses and to identify those deliberately avoiding paying tax and super.

Assistant Commissioner Peter Holt said the ATO is helping those that are trying to do the right thing, but we will take strong enforcement action against those deliberately avoiding tax and super.

“Businesses that pay cash in hand, or forget to lodge income tax or BAS statements, or don’t pay their employees super, get an unfair advantage and make it harder for other businesses. By detecting and addressing this behaviour, we can ensure a level playing field for honest small businesses.”

The ATO is inviting all local businesses and tax professionals to a one-hour information session at Cranbourne Racecourse that will explain the purpose of our visits and how to avoid common mistakes. There will also be a one-hour ‘Introduction to business records’ session for businesses that need some help.

“One of the most common mistakes we see is small businesses failing to keep appropriate records. We want small businesses to know that you don’t need to be concerned by our visits, if you aren’t getting it right – if you need support, we are willing to help,” Mr Holt said.

“After the information sessions, we will be visiting local businesses one on one. The visits can help us identify who needs extra support to make it easier for them to comply. However, the visits also help us identify where businesses are not doing the right thing and getting an unfair advantage. If we see this behaviour, we will follow up. All businesses should get a fair go.”

“If businesses know they have made mistakes, we encourage them to let us know and work with us or their tax professional.”

The ATO investigates whenever they are concerned that a business is deliberately doing the wrong thing.

“We get tip-offs from the local community about those not doing the right thing. The community as a whole is concerned and wants those who try to seek an unfair advantage to be held accountable,” Mr Holt said.

“We want to help Australian businesses get their tax and super right. We understand that people are busy and most businesses are trying to meet their obligations – but there is a difference between needing help, making mistakes and deliberate cover-ups.”

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