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Australia: Tax relief for businesses affected by coronavirus (COVID-19)

Australia: Tax relief for businesses, coronavirus

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) announced that it will implement a series of administrative measures to assist Australians experiencing financial difficulty as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

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As noted in an ATO release, relief options to assist businesses affected by COVID-19 include:

  • Deferring by up to four months the payment date of amounts due through the business activity statement (including “pay as you go” (PAYG) instalments), income tax assessments, fringe benefits tax assessments and excise.
  • Allowing businesses on a quarterly reporting cycle to opt into monthly goods and services tax (GST) reporting in order to get quicker access to GST refunds to which they may be entitled.
  • Allowing businesses to vary PAYG instalment amounts to zero for the April 2020 quarter. Businesses that vary their PAYG instalment to zero will also be permitted to claim a refund for any instalments made for the September 2019 and December 2019 quarters.
  • Remitting any interest and penalties, incurred on or after 23 January 2020, that have been applied to tax liabilities.
  • Working with affected businesses to help them pay their existing and ongoing tax liabilities by allowing them to enter into low interest payment plans.

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