What is it ATO Data Matching?
The Australian Taxation office have implemented data matching technology which is shining a spotlight on Australian taxpayers, with a focus on ensuring tax returns are lodged with income entirely disclosed. With the new systems in place, it is making it easier for the ATO to catch-out persons understating their income through omitting extra income which is not displayed within the ATO prefill report such as rental, sole trader and foreign income
How does it work?
The ATO now have more advanced systems in place, with the increased scope of data collected from your employers, health insurance providers, superannuation funds, banking and financial institutions and information from state revenue offices with a focus on rental properties. The data matching technology is strengthening due to an increased scope of bodies which the ATO are now regulating more economies.
The data matching technology is strengthening due to an increased scope of bodies which the ATO are now regulating. The ATO have announced a crackdown on rental properties with specific light being shone on the accommodation share economy for those who engage in providing rental accommodation through online platforms such as Airbnb and Stayz. They have stated they will be collecting information from home share providers for 2017 to 2020 financial years to help identify particular individuals who may be omitting extra sources of income from the ATO.
They have also announced that they will be acquiring rental bond information from all state and territory bodies from as far back as 1985 to match and identify taxpayers who have earned income or have sold property and incurred a CGT event but have not disclosed this information to the ATO within their tax return.
Expats with study loans
At the beginning of the 2020 financial year the ATO sent out a gazette notice to the Australian public notifying them of the increased regulations into existing HELP, VSL & or TSL debts for Australian expats. The ATO announced the introduction of a data matching program they will be conducting for 2020, 2021 & 2022 financial years. Aussie expats who have current study loans with the ATO will be obligated to update contact details and submit an overseas travel notification if you have an intention to, or already reside overseas, for 183 days or more in any 12 months. Australian expats will also be obligated to lodge a worldwide income or a non-lodgment advice with the ATO.
How does ATO Data Matching affect you ?
The Australian taxation office have given a friendly reminder that just because the income may not be displayed within an individuals ATO prefill report, does not mean they do not have the means in which to track down undisclosed income within a taxpayers lodged returns.
ATO audits are becoming more frequent with new technology enabling them to send out letters automatically to taxpayers with discrepancies in the information provided within their returns.
Amending a Tax Return
So before you are forced to explain your omissions to the ATO it’s a good idea to ensure that you lodge your return with all income disclosed. If you have lodged a tax return within the past 2 years which you know may have an error, our advice is get in contact with us at Ezytaxback, a registered tax agent for assistance in completing an amended tax form. It doesn’t take long and it can save you possibly thousands of dollars in fines if you happen to get audited by the ATO.
Find out more
If you want to know more or have any questions regarding your tax return please feel free to contact us.