October 18, 2019

Here Come the Single Touch Payroll (STP) Audits

If you are a business owner, and haven’t been living under a rock, you should now be aware that all salary information needs to be reported through Single Touch Payroll (STP) enabled software when you run your payroll.

There are a few concessions available, however in the main, employers should be reporting through STP.

So, now that the ATO has all of your payroll data, what are they going to do with it? Well one thing is cross check whether employee super liabilities (which are also reported via STP) have been paid on time. Super funds are now also reporting to the ATO.

Accountants Daily article today mentioned the ATO completing a review of super guarantee contributions for 75 million payments from 1 July 2018 to 31 March 2019. This covered around 400,000 employers. The review showed that around 85 – 90% of contributions were paid on time and the information will now be used for a super guarantee campaign. 2,500 employers will be contacted this week who were identified as paying all or some of the super guarantee payments late in 2019.

The ATO has never had as much live data in front of them, which is giving them incredible visibility over employer’s conduct.

Remember that to claim a tax deduction for your employee super payments, you need to make the payments on time (not just make the payments).

We recommend that employers pay extra attention to this going forward and maybe even consider audit insurance given the likelihood of increased ATO audit activity in the future.

Daniel Breheny

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