Working together - the reinvention of the ATO

Late last year, Moore Stephens Victoria  supported the AustralianTaxation Office (ATO) and then subsequently hosted a Key Agent meeting by our Directors with several senior ATO executives to enhance collaboration with our firm and ultimately to deliver a better client experience.

It was made clear from the ATO presentations that its environment is going through significant change and reinvention, particularly in the areas of innovation, review and dispute resolution and helping taxpayers meet their tax payment obligations.

Innovation

New ATO projects designed to deliver an improved client experience through the delivery of contemporary digital services and provide greater certainty around taxpayers affairs include:
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  • The launch of a new ‘App’ to enable on-the-go capture of deductible expense information for the 2015/16 year;
  • The implementation of the ‘OK letter’ pilot project where the ATO is in the process of advising more than 500,000 taxpayers with straight forward tax affairs that their 2015 income tax return is closed.
Dispute resolution

Key ATO initiatives to improve the management and governance of disputes:
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  • The use of early and direct contact with
  • Increased use of alternate dispute resolution;
  • Promotion and use of an in-house facilitation service for resolution of less complex disputes ;
  • Measuring perceptions of fairness by taxpayers in their dealings with the ATO; and
  • Improving relationships with the legal profession.
New ways to assist people to meet their tax payment obligations

The ATO has shifted its focus from debt to ‘payment thinking’, which in practical terms means the ATO is:
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  • Encouraging people to understand and plan for their payment obligations;
  • Making it easier to pay by increasing the number of easy payment options;
  • Providing tailored support to those who want to pay but are struggling to meet their obligations;
  • Making it easier to self-manage any debts that arise by continuing to expand and enhance digital services.
How Moore Stephens can help you

If you are grappling with an uncertain tax position or are struggling to meet your tax payment obligations, we would be happy to discuss the best approach with you and, where appropriate, liaise with our ATO specific contacts on your behalf to ensure resolution is achieved in a mutually beneficial manner.

For further information please contact:

Philip MacIsaac
Moore Stephens Victoria
Director, Taxation
p +61 3 9608 0157
e pmacisaac@moorestephens.com.au