The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) announced that people impacted by the recent floods in North Queensland will be granted extra time to deal with their tax affairs.
Taxpayers in impacted local government areas will automatically get an additional four weeks to lodge and pay activity statements, tax returns and fringe benefits tax returns that would normally be due in February 2019.
Refunds that are due will also be fast-tracked by the ATO.
Commissioner Chris Jordan said taxpayers do not need to apply for a deferral or a faster refund.
“Ensuring the immediate safety and security of family and property is everyone’s first priority following a natural disaster. Tax obligations are probably the last thing on people’s minds in North Queensland right now” Mr Jordan said.
The ATO will work with people to help them sort out their tax affairs when they’re ready, for example giving more time to pay or reissuing lost or destroyed documents.
For those taxpayers with a tax debt or outstanding obligation, the ATO is also suspending compliance and debt recovery action.
“People impacted by the disaster are encouraged to contact us for assistance on 1800 806 218 if they have any queries about their tax or superannuation obligations” Mr Jordan said.
This tax assistance currently applies to multiple shires in the region. A complete list is available on our website ato.gov.au/NaturalDisasters
The ATO will continue to monitor the flooding in North Queensland and make further decisions to include additional areas and/or provide further extensions as needed.
Employers are reminded that they still need to meet their ongoing super guarantee obligations for their employees. Automatic deferrals do not apply to large pay as you go withholders.
The ATO is also providing support for those impacted by the fires in Tasmania. Any member of the community impacted by disaster or suffering financial hardship is encouraged to contact the ATO to discuss their situation.
More information about assistance available is at ato.gov.au/NaturalDisasters