Business owners act now! ATO Amnesty for Late Tax Payments is Ending Soon

Hi Friends!  if your business has overdue BAS, tax or FBT returns  we have important news for you.  The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has extended a helping hand with their amnesty program for late tax payments, but the clock is ticking, and the opportunity is about to slip through your fingers!

What’s the ATO Amnesty?

In a nutshell, the ATO amnesty is a lifeline for businesses that have fallen behind on their tax payments. It’s like a gentle reminder that says, “Hey, we understand times can get tough, but let’s get you back on track without the heavy penalties.” This was introduced after COVID  with the ATO recognising that small businesses were struggling and tax debts were mounting.


 Why you should care?

  1. Avoid Crushing Penalties: Late tax payments usually come with hefty penalties and interest charges. With the amnesty, you can avoid these financial burdens.
  1. Reduce Stress: Dealing with overdue taxes can be stressful. The amnesty program allows you to take a deep breath and sort out your tax affairs without the looming anxiety of extra costs.
  1. Protect Your Business: Ignoring tax obligations can lead to serious consequences, including legal action. The amnesty helps you protect your business’s reputation and financial stability.

Important Dates to Mark on Your Calendar

The ATO amnesty program isn’t going to last forever. So, here are some key dates you need to be aware of:

31st December 2023:  This is the deadline for businesses to disclose unpaid tax debts that were originally due between 1 December 2019 and 28 February 2022. All late returns need to be lodged by this date.


30th June 2024: The final date to pay any outstanding amounts under the amnesty without facing extra penalties.


How to Take Advantage of the ATO Amnesty

Getting on board with the amnesty is a straightforward process. Here’s a quick rundown of what you need to do:

1.Disclose Your Unpaid Taxes: If you have unpaid taxes from previous years, you must disclose them to the ATO by 31st December 2023. This is crucial to be eligible for the amnesty.


2. Set Up a Payment Plan: You’ll need to establish a payment plan for the disclosed amount, which must be paid by 30th June 2024.


3. Stay Compliant: Moving forward, ensure that you remain up-to-date with your tax obligations. Don’t let history repeat itself!


The ATO amnesty for late tax payments is a great opportunity for small business owners to get their financial affairs in order without the burden of excessive penalties. If you’ve been procrastinating on lodging your taxes / BAS  or  if you are facing financial challenges, don’t wait any longer! Take advantage of this amnesty while you still can and keep your small business on the right track. Your future self will thank you for it!

If you have any questions or need assistance with the process, don’t hesitate to reach out to your friendly bookkeeper ( me)  or the ATO. Together, we can help your business thrive and manage your tax responsibilities as we head into 2024.

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