Automatic lodgment and payment deferrals announced by ATO

The ATO has deferred lodgment and payment for various obligations that would have fallen due in the near future. It says the move has been made in light of the significant impact COVID-19 is having on both practitioners and their clients.

Lodgment and payment deferrals for the following obligations, that would have fallen due on 15 May, have been put back. They are:

  • Company 2018-19 income tax returns, which will now be due by 5 June
  • SMSF 2019-19 annual returns, which will now be due 30 June (with the same deadline for bushfire affected SMSFs).

The 2018-19 returns for individuals, partnerships, and trusts can also be lodged by the 5 June deadline, provided clients pay any liability by then. These entities that are bushfire affected can also lodge by the same date.

Fringe benefits tax annual returns for 2019-20, for both lodgment and payment, have been automatically deferred until 25 June.

Practitioners should note that if your clients are so affected by circumstances that more time is needed for lodgment, you can request further deferrals via Online services for agents.

If unable to make a payment by the extended deadlines, practitioners can submit a payment only deferral request form in their behalf. This form, and other relevant forms, can be downloaded here.

Comments may be made below, however Tax & Super Australia is not in a position to answer specific enquiries. Replies may be made by Tax & Super Australia, making general observations about the issue raised. People should ensure that their comments are respectful and professional and should not make adverse comments on specific individuals. Members can of course make use of our Helpline service and receive detailed and technically accurate responses in the timeframe mentioned under terms and conditions.

Website Comments

  1. Adam Maccora

    Big Deal!
    We already had up until the 05/06/2020.
    The Clients don’t need more time to get their affairs in order – WE DO!
    We have spent more than a month of time helping Clients who are going broke and acting as the Governments pseudo Centrelink administrator.
    And it ain’t over yet!
    Now every single Tax Agent has to go to through the bother and stress, of trying to secure further extensions for every outstanding Client.
    Just another unnecessary bureaucratic waste of time.
    When will our “Partners” at the Tax Office start to give us some “Practical” assistance – instead of this irritating and token concession.

    • Suzanne Grima

      could not agree with you more Adam – it’s a bloody joke from public practitioners point of view!

  2. Noel Lockett

    Totally agee with Adam Maccora – It isn’t the client the needs the extension of time to lodge it is the Sole Tax Agent. I’ve lodged 5 tax returns in the last month with 99% of time helping clients with Job Keeper/Centrelink – now with Super and BAS Returns coming up with lodgements, what time do we have left. Requesting further deferrals on line – another waste of day or two!

  3. Sudath Perera

    Totally agree with the above comments. I am a sole tax agent and have been spending most of daily time assisting clients with their Gvt Covid enquiries which has delayed my core work, that is attending to tax returns. It is going to be a struggle to meet the coming up BAS and non individual tax returns’ deadline. ATO needs to recognise the time and efforts the tax agents are putting/have to put re Covid assistance to their clients.

  4. Wayne Manna

    Absolutely agree. There is nothing available that was not already available. Many of us already have to rely on the 5 June deferral in a “normal” year. This has been anything but a normal year because of all of the other issues all tax agents have had to deal with – like the other respondents, I have been flat out for three weeks on Cash Boost and JobKeeper. None of the related tasks were made any easier by complex legislation and I reckon I have done 10 hours of webinars in the last 3 weeks trying to get on top of the stimulus offerings. Even simple matters like sole traders whose businesses are in lockdown but who didn’t lodge their 2019 returns by 12 March and who want to know if they can get JobKeeper or have to apply for JobSeeker have been complicated because of delays in getting clear guidance about the applicable Commissioner discretions. This is tough for the ATO as well, but offering “lodgement concessions” that are hardly concessional is not helping. At the very least, it would make sense to move the 15 May date to 31 May and to extend the 5 June date to 15 June. That would help. I accept that extensions beyond those dates are a problem because we are then into the 2020 season and I am expecting an early-July rush from people who are anticipating and desperately need their tax refunds for 2020.

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