Time for a Payroll Health Check
As we predicted with the introduction of GST, the ATO is focusing on ensuring employers are meeting their obligations to employees. As there have been a number of changes and in the light of increased scrutiny, we recommend that you conduct a review of your payroll processes. This includes but is not limited to the following.
1. Registered for Single Touch Payroll (STP) reporting
Unless you have applied for a deferral or extension, all employers have until 30 September 2019 to start reporting via STP. Have you managed the process and are you taking advantage of benefits of STP such as some of the Employee Onboarding tools? There is useful material on the ATO’s STP resource page, click here for more information.
If you need assistance transitioning to STP, don’t hesitate to give us a buzz!
2. Recording personal/carer’s leave & more
How recently have you reviewed Awards at your workplace? For example, a recent employment law update may change the way you record personal/carer’s leave. Employers now need to record personal/carer’s leave accruals in their payroll software in days (rather than hours). Employers need to ensure they are paying employees for personal/carer’s leave based on their rostered ordinary hours, rather than notionally 7.6 ordinary hours
3. Review your super obligations
While there is an amnesty for small businesses on penalties for STP during the STP transition period, there is no concession in relation to Superannuation Guarantee Payments. If you don’t comply, you can lose the tax deduction for super contributions, pay extra interest and be liable administrative penalties. Directors can also be made personally liable for company or trust obligations.
On top of that, legislation which would have allowed the Commissioner some discretion to remit penalties has not been reintroduced since the election. If you have employee superannuation debts, we strongly recommend you take action now. Bring these to our attention now before the ATO approach you with a “please explain” letter.
4. Do you provide fringe benefits?
Do you provide fringe benefits to your employees and, if so, have you considered fringe benefits tax? Fringe benefits include more things than just cars. They can arise from staff getting a discount on products you make or sell, lunches (Christmas, Melbourne Cup, etc), providing laptops and phones or paying expenses on behalf of employees. They can also arise when someone else, eg a supplier, provides benefits to your staff. There are a number of exemptions for benefits structured correctly. How well do you comply?
If you have any queries about your payroll obligations, give us a ring on 02 6362 1966 or contact us here and we can help you out.