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The ATO’s Super Guarantee Amnesty

Posted 12 Jun '20

Have you missed paying any of your employees super over the past few years and haven’t got around to paying it back yet?

We understand old liabilities can be overlooked and if you’ve been meaning to fix it up, now is the perfect time to do so with the ATO’s Super Guarantee Amnesty.

What the amnesty means is that if you let the ATO know about any super money owed for your employees (past or present) before the 7th of September 2020, they will allow you to pay this in full or via a payment plan and not charge you any penalties or administrative fees.

Why is the Super Guarantee Amnesty so important?

If the ATO is to audit your businesses Super Guarantee(SG) obligations and finds that there is undeclared unpaid super, you can receive administrative penalties from 100% to 200% of the amount unpaid, as well as general interest charges that accrue from the date your Super Guarantee is due up to the date you pay the account in full, and further administration charges of $20 per employee per quarter.

Not only will your business be exposed to these pretty hefty fees, as a director of a company that fails to pay employees super in full by the due date, you can automatically become personally liable for a penalty equal to the unpaid amount. 

Who is eligible for the Super Guarantee Amnesty period?

To be eligible you must:

– Have not been informed by the ATO that they intend to examine your super obligations for the quarters your disclosure relates to.
– Disclose any unpaid super for any quarter between 1 July 1992 and 31 March 2018 that hasn’t been previously disclosed
– Lodge your voluntary disclosure form by the 7th of September 2020
– Pay the amount owing to the ATO or set up a payment arrangement after lodging the form.

How can a business apply for the amnesty?

To apply:

– Download the ATO’s SG Amnesty Form (XLS)
– Complete one form per quarter
– Check for errors and ensure the amounts are correct
– Complete the declaration and save

This can be lodged online through the business portal or through your accountant. If you require assistance with this contact Empire Accountants today 07 3124 0244.

Are there any extensions due to COVID-19?

While the ATO acknowledge the difficult times that the community is experiencing with COVID-19 and have granted extensions on various lodgement due dates, unfortunately the law does not allow them to vary the due date for the Super Guarantee Amnesty.

The good news is that if you wish to participate in the amnesty, the ATO are willing to work with you to establish flexible payment plan to assist you in continuing to make payments. This includes:

– Flexible payment terms that can be adjusted if your circumstances change due to COVID-19
– Ability to extend the payment arrangement beyond 7 September 2020 (keeping in mind that only payments made by 7 September will be tax deductible)

To learn more please visit the ATO website, or contact your Empire Advisor today for assistance 07 3124 0244.

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