As tax return deadline looms close, Australian taxpayers are racing to lodge tax return with ATO, as they encourage taxpayers to file early or get a late refund check.
Lodge Tax Return with ATO Before October 31
The deadline for lodging an income tax return or engaging a tax agent is on October 31. If you have yet to lodge, stop delaying and lodge now. If you plan to engage a tax agent, you’ll have a longer period of completing your return but take note that you have to be on the tax agent’s books by October 31.
Aside from possibly getting a Failure to Lodge (FTL) penalty from the ATO if you fail to lodge before the tax return deadline, you also risk getting a late refund check from the office.
Some 300,000 Taxpayers Missed Out on Cash from the ATO
Karen Foat, ATO assistant commissioner confirmed that last year, about 475,000 people filed their annual tax returns late and as a result of not meeting the tax return deadline, more than 300,000 Australians received their refund checks late as well.
She said, “We know that tax can seem complicated, which is why we see so many people putting it off.”
“People should know that it’s actually becoming increasingly quick and painless to lodge your return.”
Strange Excuses for Late Lodgements and Lack of Receipts
The Australian Taxation Office has also provided a list of excuses taxpayers are making on why they are cutting it close and why they couldn’t provide proof of expenses.
A thief, a mouse, and a holiday brain; these are just some of the unusual excuses that taxpayers make for late lodgements and lack of receipts, according to ATO.
One taxpayer said a thief had broken into his car and stolen part of his work uniform where he had the receipt for it. Because of the theft, he was unable to provide receipts as proof of purchase for a valid work-related expense.
Another taxpayer claimed it wasn’t a thief but a mouse that had broken into his car. The mouse had eaten the receipts and because of that, he was unable to provide proof of his expense.
Others just didn’t know they have to file a return while others just blamed it on “holiday brain.”
Still, the ATO thinks there are less false tax claims now and attributes it to taxpayers and accountants being careful. Their record also shows the average tax refund has increased by under $270 in 2019.
So go ahead and lodge your tax return if you haven’t yet. You can also get in touch with us here at Chan & Naylor to make sure you don’t miss the tax return deadline. We’ll make it easier and less stressful to lodge tax return with ATO.
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