“GOOD MORNING, IT’S THE ATO HERE – WE ARE CONDUCTING A REVIEW OF…”

What a great way to start your day – It’s enough to instil fear in most people (regardless of the nature or complexity of their tax affairs).  While it’s human nature to be fearful of being checked, as with most things, taking preventative measures and making sure you get it right from the beginning will always be more beneficial than only taking remedial actions once the Audit has started (a Review is an Audit by any other name).  As the government continues to increase funding to the ATO for more and more review activity, we can only assume it will be a case of when not if you are selected for an ATO review.

Below are a few tips for some actions you could consider either to minimise your risk of an ATO audit or to make it a more pleasant process when it arises:

– Have your returns prepared by an experienced, registered tax agent (like Astro Tax). Because even just disclosing information in the wrong boxes in a return can lead to an audit;

– Keep your records for as long as required.  Do you know how long you have to keep records of capital assets, of property which has been sold?  The onus of proof is on you, so if you are unsure whether or not you are getting this right, why not have Astro Tax complete a Prudential Tax Review for you and/or your business – we can then provide you with some helpful suggestions as to improvements you can make in your record keeping procedures so as to minimise your angst when an ATO audit arises;

– Consider Tax Audit Insurance which can cover the majority of the professional costs (subject to limits and caps) in having your tax agent assist you in the event of an ATO audit.  All existing clients of Astro Tax have recently received details of the Tax Shield product we have on offer.  If you would like to know more, give us a call;

– If in doubt, ask before you do.  At Astro Tax, we like to be the first port of call for our clients on all financial matters.  So, we encourage you to call to discuss the likely tax position of that transaction or venture, before you go into it;

– If you are contacted by the ATO (about anything), refer them to your tax agent – at Astro Tax we have vast experience in dealing with all ATO inquiries.

If you have any queries or would like to discuss any of these matters further, please do not hesitate to contact us at Astro Tax on 62628327.

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