ATO audits can happen any time to a business, but now with JobKeeper, early release of super and COVID-19 cashflow boost payments, the ATO will be reviewing and auditing a lot more businesses in the future.
The ATO will usually conduct a risk review initially, to determine if there are compliance issues that warrant a full audit process. Often the risk review process allows issues to be resolved quickly and simply without the need for a full audit.
If an audit is instigated, there are several stages including an initial meeting, research and investigation by the ATO agents and discussions with the business owner before the ATO issues a final audit report and outcomes. Often the ATO will issue an interim report before the final report, allowing the business owner to review their position and make comment or provide further information. Some audits will be concluded within a few months and others may take up to 18 months.
There are several types of audits for small to medium enterprises, including record keeping, income tax, data comparison, cash and hidden economy and superannuation guarantee audits.
What to Expect
If your business is linked with a registered tax or BAS agent, the ATO will generally liaise with them first. The business will be assigned an ATO case officer.
If you have been contacted directly by the ATO about a review or audit, talk to us about helping you through the process to reduce the stress of the process.
Even if you have not been flagged for an audit yet, we can help proactively manage your records and get your systems and accounts into excellent shape to minimise the impact on your business. Professionally managing the audit process will save you time and money.