ATO flags changes to tax returns

Could this be the end of the road for tax returns?
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01.ATO could be doing your tax return

australians doing their tax return

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) could be doing your tax return for you, if reports from the Australian Financial Review (AFR) prove accurate. The newspaper is claiming that the government is about to embark on changes to the taxation system that could cut red tape for DIY tax lodgers. 

The AFR has reported that straightforward tax returns for salary earners with bank interest and simple tax deductions will be pre-completed by the ATO starting from 1 July 2014, although the ATO has yet to confirm this. Taxpayers can pull their tax return from the ATO’s system and accept the assessment without taking any action.

The move could potentially save taxpayers hours of completing their tax returns, or an average of $371 for those who get someone else to do it for them (ATO estimate). And despite the potential loss of earnings, accountants reportedly support the move, acknowledging they will lose low margin business but can instead offer targeted advice to people with more complicated tax returns.



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