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Australian Tax Preparers get SBR Deadline

Posted on July 15, 2016 by Dave Nitchman

closeup of computer keyboard with tax return button

The Australian Tax Office, which has seen impressive uptake of its Standard Business Reporting programme, has begun transitioning preparers towards exclusive use of a new reporting channel that will further advance SBR in that country. Total SBR transactions for tax, business registration and pension reporting in Australia were in excess of 15 million last year.

The ATO’s new “practitioner lodgment service” (PLS) is replacing an existing online filing portal and will only work with software that is SBR enabled. Use of the PLS will be mandatory after 1 April 2017.

While there will be some costs incurred by firms not currently using SBR (primarily due to software upgrades), the ATO anticipates long term cost savings through a reduction in the amount of time spent reporting separately to different government agencies and the opportunity to simplify software requirements. Experience bears this out asestimated cost savings from SBR were AUD400 million in 2104-2015. Current SBR users will see improvements too, as the new PLS will cover more reporting obligations.

This is a very positive development and shows that process improvements and additional benefits can be realised in mature markets where XBRL has long been in use. Learn more (includes links to an FAQ and a video about SBR).

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