AAG In Action: When Tax Time Overwhelms, We Can Help

June 2019 | Accounting & Tax

Background

One of AAG’s long-standing clients referred a friend to our services, as they were dealing with a number of taxation compliance issues within their small business. A young couple, the business owners had been sent a letter of demand from the ATO and were panicking – they were unsure how to move forward and were afraid for their business’ future.

When our new clients first came to AAG their overdue returns included:

  1. Five income tax returns for the business;
  2. 16 BAS returns outstanding; and
  3. Four outstanding individual tax returns.

Our client’s reasons for failing to lodge their returns were not deceitful; they were dealing with a number of personal and business-related issues that were distracting and had impeded their ability to see the way forward – including:

  • Poor business conditions – they were struggling to keep the business afloat and were worried that they would be facing a tax liability they wouldn’t be able to pay;
  • Personal stresses on their relationship, largely due to financial pressures within the business; and
  • A difficult personal situation, with a close family member of one business owner dealing with a terminal illness.

AAG in Action

It was clear from the first meeting that our clients required significant professional assistance and support – not just from an accountant, but from a team who could understand the fears they had for their business and personal lives, and who had the experience to expertly guide them through the process.

Not wanting to detract from the seriousness of their situation, we explained to our clients that they had two obligations to the ATO:

  1. To lodge returns – and the ATO has the ability to fine for late lodgement; and
  2. To pay their tax liabilities.

The first course of action was to lodge our clients’ returns, allowing us to then approach the ATO with a payment arrangement plan. The payment plan was to ensure any tax debt would be paid over a period of time that was manageable for our client, allowing them to essentially ‘set and forget’.

Through a coordinated effort of the AAG team, we collated and processed five years of tax invoices, receipts and paperwork for multiple entities, and in just three short months lodged five income tax returns for their business, 16 outstanding BAS returns and four overdue individual tax returns. We also undertook a financial ‘health check’ for our client, ensuring their financials were properly in place going into the next Financial Year and beyond.

Result

Much to our clients’ relief, the ATO accepted the proposed payment arrangement plan and our client has regained control over their tax obligations.

It was fortunate that our clients contacted AAG before their situation was escalated by the ATO, as this allowed us to be proactive and approach the ATO with a plan. We also provided the ATO with reassurance that going forward, our client would be compliant with their tax obligations. Thus, a less than desirable outcome was avoided, and our client was able to get their business and personal lives on track again.

Are you needing help with outstanding tax return lodgements, and would like professional guidance on how to move forward? Contact us today on (08) 9227 6300 or email for a confidential chat about the issues you’re facing and how we can assist.

Important information and disclaimer

This Case Study should not infer that the ATO will agree to a payment arrangement over time for the payment of overdue tax, for all taxpayers who request this. The facts and circumstances that surround lodgement and preparing financials are individual so this Case Study should not be relied upon as an indicator of our success.

This publication has been prepared by AustAsia Group, including AustAsia Accounting Services Pty Ltd (Registered Tax Agent No 7587 3005).

AustAsia Accounting Services Pty Ltd – Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation.

Any advice in this publication is of a general nature only and has not been tailored to your personal circumstances. Accordingly, reliance should not be placed on the information contained in this document as the basis for making any financial investment, insurance or other decision. Please seek personal advice prior to acting on this information.

Information in this publication is accurate as at the date of writing, 12 June 2019. Some of the information may have been provided to us by third parties. Whilst it is believed the information is accurate and reliable, the accuracy of that information is not guaranteed in any way.

Opinions constitute our judgement at the time of issue and are subject to change. Neither the Licensee nor any member of AustAsia Group, nor their employees or directors give any warranty of accuracy, nor accept any responsibility, for any errors or omissions in this document.

Any general tax information provided in this publication is intended as a guide only and is based on our general understanding of taxation laws. It is not intended to be a substitute for specialised taxation advice or an assessment of your liabilities, obligations or claim entitlements that arise, or could arise, under taxation law, and we recommend you consult with a registered tax agent.

Sign up to receive our latest Newsletter