Small employers urged to jump onboard single touch payroll

The Single Touch Payroll system is well and truly up and running and the Australian Taxation Office is urging all small employers, or those with 19 or less employees, to make the switch if they haven’t already.

The Single Touch Payroll system came into play on July 1, 2019 with most employers with over 20 staff now already reporting the employees’ salaries and wages, pay as you go withholding and superannuation information to the ATO each payday.

When the system was rolled out earlier this year, ATO Assistant Commissioner Jason Lucchese said employers of 19 or less staff had until July 1 to September 30 to commence reporting under the new system.

The ATO says the Single Touch Payroll system stands to deliver benefits for both employers and employees by streamlining payroll processes and providing greater visibility for the ATO in relation to unpaid superannuation or late payments.

The ATO says more than 540,000 employers across Australia have successfully transitioned to the Single Touch Payroll (STP) already but understands the switch for smaller employers is marks a significant digital reporting change.

Lucchese says there are three possible pathways for small employers to take in order to switch to the new system.

“You can start reporting now through an STP-enabled solution that is right for you, consider if you are eligible for a quarterly reporting concession, or apply for a deferral if you need more time,” Lucchese said.

“It’s really important for small employers to contact us if they have any concerns about their ability to transition to STP.

“You can also speak with your registered tax or BAS agent if you have one.

“We want the transition to STP to be simple and manageable for all employers, and no penalties will be applied in the 2019-20 financial year for small employers who make a genuine attempt to transition or for missed or late reports.”

The ATO has launched a video series about small employers and their transition so that others can hear about how they made the move to STP. Watch here:

The ATO has also developed an online quiz to assist small employers understand their options and determine what the next step should be.


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