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Tax Office Assistance To Small Businesses



The Tax Office has announced new measures to help businesses with an annual turnover of less than $2 million that are struggling to manage their tax debts in the current economic climate.


Tax Commissioner Michael D’Ascenzo confirmed his commitment to helping small businesses by offering twelve month general interest charge (GIC) free payment arrangements and deferring the payment date for activity statements.


“While most small businesses are meeting their tax obligations, global conditions are having an impact, with over a quarter of small businesses carrying a tax debt,” Mr D’Ascenzo said.


“We’ve introduced the GIC free payment arrangements and deferred activity statement payment due dates to help those small businesses that are struggling to meet their tax obligations.


  “We don’t want the GIC or temporary cash flow problems to be the deciding factors between a business surviving and being able to meet its tax and superannuation obligations or becoming insolvent.


Twelve month GIC free payment arrangements


Businesses with an annual turnover of less than $2 million with an activity statement debt can apply for a GIC free payment arrangement from now until 30 June 2010.


They will have the GIC remitted for a maximum period of 12 months, provided the payment arrangement is maintained.


Deferred activity statement payment due dates


Small businesses can also request a deferral of payment on their next activity statement.


Businesses with short term cash flow problems that pay quarterly and annually may be granted a deferral of up to two months, with those that pay monthly eligible for up to one month.


Activity statements still have to be lodged on time, however, no interest applies for the period of the deferral.


How to access these concessions


Businesses need to contact the ATO as early as possible so as to negotiate a sustainable interest free payment arrangement.