ATO Data Matching
With tax season just around the corner, many business owners are turning their attention to their tax returns. One concern that torment many taxpayers’ minds is the chance of being audited by the ATO. The ATO can become quite strict when it comes to checking on the compliance of taxpayers. Their data matching programs help them work out who should be subject to a tax audit.
What is a Tax Audit?
A tax audit is an investigation of an individual’s or organisation’s tax return to prove that the financial information is correct.
What is the ATO Data Matching Program?
The data matching is a process by which the ATO collects information about you from third parties including your bank, some government agencies and some other businesses.
Some of these examples include:
- Your employers
- BAS statement
- Superannuation accounts
- Health insurance funds
After gathering such information, the ATO compares the data retrieved from the third parties against the information you provided on your tax return.
Are third-parties required to share my private information with the ATO?
Yes, they are. If the organisation refuses to provide the information requested by the ATO, they can be penalised for the criminal offence.
ATO Data Matching – Know Your Risk
We asked our professional accountants at Tax Return to give us some tips on how to minimise your risk of being audited. They suggest to:
- Have a knowledgeable bookkeeper who helps you to keep track of your finances
- Hire a trusted accountant who can help you assess your tax return situation and help you validate information reported by the ATO
- Make sure you report all income including second jobs, investment properties etc.
“With the growing number of homes, apartments, units and rooms available via accommodation sharing sites, there is a real risk some people may not understand their tax obligations.” MARSH, S. (2018)
Claim Your Income If You Drive Your Car As An Uber Driver
On this note, the ATO’s Uber tax regulations for Uber Drivers are:
- You need to register for GST as an Uber driver regardless of your income threshold
- All your income made through Uber driving must be declared.
ATO Data Matching – If You Did Wrong, You Could Fix It
While the ATO gives you a chance to make it up to them by taking full responsibility of your actions, your tax accountant can advise you on amending your tax return to assess your current situation in depth before taking further steps.
Our team of accountants at Tax Return suggest being compliant from the very beginning as the ATO data matching program will only become more developed at catching misleading individuals.
Trust the Tax Return Team
Let the team at TaxReturn help you make the most of your tax return. Contact us today to start your tax return online or over the phone with one of our local tax accountants.