Tax reporting requirements

Payroll reporting

As of 1 July 2019, small businesses with fewer than 20 employees are required to lodge reports with the Australian Tax Office (ATO) using Single Touch Payroll software. There is however a transition period for small businesses to prepare for this new way of reporting which ends on 30 September 2019.

Monthly or quarterly business activity and instalment activity statements

The Australian Tax Office (ATO) requires businesses to submit a business activity statement (BAS) monthly, quarterly or annually (annual GST return, if eligible).

It is used to report and pay goods and services tax (GST), pay as you go (PAYG) instalments, PAYG withholding tax and other tax obligations.

When you register for an Australian business number (ABN) and GST, the ATO will automatically send you a BAS when it is time to lodge. All businesses registered for GST must lodge a BAS before the due date.

An instalment activity statement (IAS) is similar to the BAS but without GST and some other taxes. Businesses that are not registered for GST would submit an IAS to pay PAYG instalments.

Financial year reporting

In Australia, the financial year for tax purposes runs from 1 July to 30 June.

Businesses are required to lodge an income tax return for this period. If you operate your business as a sole trader you can declare your business income as part of your personal income tax return.

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