If you’re running a small business in Australia, chances are you’re constantly pressed for time. Preparing and lodging your business payment summaries would certainly take time, good thing the Australian Tax Office (ATO) now allows certain reports to be lodged online.
If the type of annual report you’re going to lodge is all about payments you have made regarding work, which includes salaries and wages, then you’re in luck as the ATO allows Pay-As-You-Go (PAYG) withholding payment summary annual report to be lodged online.
The only question is, how do you prepare and lodge your business payment summaries online?
Preparing Your Online Business Payment Summaries
When lodging your business payment summaries online, there are 3 questions to consider:
- Is your software ATO-compliant?
- What’s your supplier number?
- How can you ensure a safe and secure access online?
Ensuring ATO Compliance of Your Payroll Software
Before everything else, make sure that the information recorded on your Business Activity Statement matches the Australian Business Number (ABN), payer’s name, and branch number listed on your payroll software. Failure to correct errors on this stage will only cause you significant problems in your lodging procedure.
For a successful online lodging, you have to ensure that your software is ATO-compliant. ATO lists all the commercial payroll software that are compliant with their system and the requirements you have to meet if you’re using in-house payroll software. You could easily check their site to see if the software you’re using is okay for lodging.
Your Supplier Number
When you save your PAYG annual report from your payroll software to your computer, the online lodging system may require you to input your supplier number. Your supplier number is simply your ABN.
If the manual input of your supplier number online seems too much of a hassle for you when lodging online, you can automate the online lodging whole process by entering your ABN and other business details into your payroll software. These details will be automatically included on your lodged online report.
One of the best things about online lodging is the capability to lodge PAYG annual reports for other business entities. When you lodge for other entities, the payer ABN, your business, should be different from the supplier ABN, the business entity you’re paying for. In essence, your supplier number is necessary when lodging online, whether you’re lodging for yourself or others.
Ensuring Safe and Secure Access Online
Make sure to keep a backup file of your annual report. There are a lot of potential mishaps that may arise during the lodging process and it’s better to be safe than sorry. After all, ATO may reject your lodged report, which means you’ll have to provide your report once again. Plus, the ATO requires businesses to keep a copy of their annual report to meet their requirements for record keeping.
There are 2 ways to ensure a secure online lodging. The first option is registering for an AUSkey, the standard secure login provider for online government services in Australia. However, you have to check if you’re eligible for an AUSkey first.
Otherwise, you can try the alternative secure log in provider, Manage ABN Connections, which requires your myGov account. After getting on Manage ABN Connections, you’re all set to access online Australian Government services.
Lodging Your Online Business Payment Summaries
Now that you’re all set, it’s time to lodge your business payment summaries online. There are various ways to achieve this objective: Use the ATO Business Portal, BAS Agent Portal, or the Tax Agent Portal.
If your payroll software is Standard Business Reporting-enabled, you can easily lodge your business payment summaries from there. Just remember that you can’t send screen captures, scanned photos, image files, PDFs, spreadsheets, and word processing files. ATO’s portals will automatically reject these files.
All that’s left for you to do is to properly go through ATO’s process and in a few moments, you have successfully lodged your business payment summaries online.
Bear in mind that you can also lodge amended annual reports online. But you need to check with your payroll software whether it generates amended reports or not.
When lodging amended reports, don’t include the non-amended reports. Make sure you’re only lodging amended reports that weren’t included in the first report you sent. Regardless whether you’re sending amended reports or not, you’re required to type in the Amendment Indicator. Key in ‘O’ for original report and ‘A’ for amended report. Remember, amendments need to be reported within 21 days.
Online Lodging Still a Hassle?
Darcy Bookkeeping & Business Services expert team of experienced bookkeepers and accountants will get the job done in no time and allow you the opportunity to work on what matters most: your business. Contact us and let us help you focus on what’s important.