Last week, Parliament passed legislation to extend Single Touch Payroll (STP) reporting to include all small employers (those with fewer than 20 employees) from 1 July 2019.
Small employers can start reporting any time from the 1 July start date to 30 September 2019.
There will be generous transition arrangements including deferrals and a quarterly reporting option for two years for micro employers reporting through an agent.
Chris Jordan, Commissioner of Taxation, made the following statement:
|We understand the move to real-time digital reporting may be a big change for employers, especially small business, so the ATO will adopt a supportive, tailored approach to help them undertake this change.
· We understand that many small businesses and other small employers do not currently use commercial payroll software and they will not be required to purchase such software to report under STP.
I want to reassure small business and give my personal guarantee that our approach to extending Single Touch Payroll will be flexible, reasonable and pragmatic. In particular, the ATO understands there will be circumstances where more time is needed to implement STP or lodge reports.
· We will offer micro employers (1 to 4 employees) help to transition to STP and a number of alternative options – such as allowing those who rely on a registered tax or BAS agent to report quarterly for the first two years, rather than each time payroll is run.
Pleasingly, many small employers have already taken up STP reporting and they have provided positive feedback that STP makes payroll reporting easier.
The best thing to do is contact us if you have any questions or concerns about STP or any other tax matters, on 13 28 61 or at ato.gov.au/stp.