22 December 2020

While the ATO has done a fantastic job in its administration of the Government’s stimulus packages, a small number of entities may have wrongfully missed out.

The report by the Inspector-General of Taxation and Taxation Ombudsman (IGTO) recognises the good work of the ATO in this area but indicates some taxpayers should have been allowed to demonstrate their trading circumstances other than by lodging a BAS before 12 March 2020.

“The ATO is to be commended for its administration of the JobKeeper scheme,” said Institute of Public Accountants (IPA) chief executive officer, Andrew Conway.

“However, a small number of entities may have been denied access to JobKeeper and the cash flow boost.

“According to the IGTO report, certain financial supplies can satisfy the requirement to evidence business activity which is not limited to notifying the making of a supply via lodgement of a business activity statement (BAS).

“In fact, if a new business opened a business account then this would be sufficient to indicate their business activity intent.

“Accountants, as trusted advisers, should review their small business clients to ensure those that may have been eligible but denied access, are now brought to the attention of the ATO.

“It is unfortunate if some small businesses closed where they could have rightfully accessed the cash flow boost,” said Mr Conway.