• Frequently asked questions about Account details

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    Obligations

    How do I know which tax obligations relate to the same activity statement?  

    How do I know which payment was made for an activity statement?  

    Does the tax type summary accounts screen include obligations that were paid?  

    Amounts

    What is an account payout figure?  

    Can I see the amounts for activity statement labels?  

    When preparing an annual return, what amount of instalments should be taken into account?  

    Dates

    When will the activity statement I lodged appear on the itemised account?  

    What is a process date?  

    What is the effective date?  

    Refunds and transfers

    How do I request a refund or transfer?  

    Can I request a transfer from one entity’s account to a different entity’s account?  

    Charges

    How is the general interest charge (GIC) calculated?  

    How do I know which transactions triggered a general interest charge amount?  

    How does GIC affect an income tax return?  

    Making payments

    Can I arrange to pay off an amount?  

    Can I make a payment online?  

    How do I check that my bank account details are correct?  

    Obligations

    How do I know which tax obligations relate to the same activity statement?

    On the Itemised account screen choose the:

    • Process date order – all tax obligations for the same activity statement are grouped under the heading Self-assessed amount(s) for period ended (date). This date is the end of the period that the activity statement applies to. For amended or revised activity statements, all obligations for the same activity statement are grouped under the heading Amended self-assessed amount(s) for period ended.
    • Effective date order – each activity statement tax obligation will appear with the period information of the activity statement. For amended or revised activity statements, all obligations are reported with the original activity statement period information.

    How do I know which payment was made for an activity statement?

    Tax accounts are maintained in a running balance format. Payments are not applied to specific activity statements or tax obligations – they are applied to the balance of the account.

    Does the tax type summary accounts screen include obligations that were paid?

    The tax type summary does not reflect payments. It shows net amounts that were reported for each tax obligation, including any revisions or amendments to amounts already reported and net amounts of assessable and deductible interest. All amounts displayed relate to a client income year or the current income year to date.

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    Amounts

    What is an account payout figure?

    The payout figure is the amount you need to pay to bring an account balance back to zero. Where appropriate, the payout figure will include an estimate of the general interest charge (GIC) payable. Payment of this amount, on the payout date specified, will bring the account balance to zero, unless other transactions are processed in the interim.

    A payout figure can be changed by updating the date field on screen.

    Can I see the amounts for activity statement labels?

    You can view amount details for activity statement labels by selecting the linked amount beside the Goods and services tax heading in the Debit amount or credit amount column on the Itemised account screen. This will take you to an Activity statement summary screen.

    When preparing an annual return, what amount of instalments should be taken into account?

    When processing an annual return, the ATO will allow an instalment credit equal to that reported on activity statements. Credit will be given regardless of the payment being made. However, where debit account balances exist, any assessment refund will be offset against these and the remaining balance refunded. The net reported amounts are available on the Account details – itemised account screen.

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    Dates

    When will the activity statement I lodged appear on the itemised account?

    The activity statement amount will appear on the itemised account immediately after successful lodgment of the activity statement.

    What is a process date?

    The process date is the date a transaction is processed by the ATO. This is the date the transactions are placed onto the account. By sorting the itemised account list by process date, you will be able to view the order that transactions were placed on the account.

    What is the effective date?

    The effective date is the date the transaction affected the account. For debit amounts it will reflect the due date, and for payment or credit transactions it will be the date the payment was received or credit notified. The effective date is used to determine the daily balance and for calculating the general interest charge (GIC). The date allows for weekends, public holidays and permanent extensions.

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    Refunds and transfers

    How do I request a refund or transfer?

    You can request a refund or transfer through the Business Portal by selecting the Refund request or Transfer request buttons located on the account screens.
    You will be issued a receipt number for the request. Ensure that you record this receipt number by either printing the screen or writing down the receipt number against your records.

    The details of the request will be recorded as a secure message, enabling you to review the details at any time by choosing the Mail link in the left navigation bar – Sent items view. You need to allow 14 days for us to process the request.

    Can I request a transfer from one entity’s account to a different entity’s account?

    The ability to request a transfer of funds from one account to another is not currently available. To request a transfer, contact the ATO by phoning 13 28 66.

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    Charges

    How is the general interest charge (GIC) calculated?

    GIC is calculated on the daily outstanding balance. To obtain GIC details:

    • if there is a link available, you can select the hyperlink and the calculation detail will be displayed
    • if there is no link available, you can send a secure message to the ATO by choosing the Mail link in the left navigation bar.

    You can lodge a request for the remission of GIC in the Business Portal by choosing the Mail link in the left navigation bar and selecting the Request a remission of general interest charge topic, or by sending a request in writing.

    When you make a request in writing, you must detail the circumstances that led to the delay in payment, including any action taken to relieve these circumstances or their effects.

    Alternatively, you can send your requests to the ATO as follows:

    Fax: 1300 139 045  

    Mail: NSW, QLD, ACT

    PO Box 9102  
    PENRITH NSW 2740  

    Mail: WA, SA, NT, VIC, TAS

    PO Box 327  
    ALBURY NSW 2640  


    For more information on the grounds for remission, phone the ATO on 13 28 66.

    How do I know which transactions triggered a general interest charge amount?

    On the Itemised account screen you can sort by effective date. The account transactions will be displayed in the order that each amount took effect on the account. The trigger for calculating the general interest charge (GIC) occurs when the account balance changes to a debit amount (that is, an amount you owe the ATO). GIC is calculated on a daily compounding basis for each day the account is in debit. For current rates, refer to GIC rates.

    How does GIC affect an income tax return?

    Generally, you may claim a tax deduction for interest expenses in the year that the interest charge is incurred.

    You are required to disclose interest income in your tax return in the year the remission occurs.

    Deductible interest expenses include:

    • GIC amounts
    • debit amended GIC amounts.

    Assessable interest income will include:

    • remitted GIC
    • credit amended GIC
    • credit amendments to GIC remissions.

    On an RBA statement, the:

    • Total net deductible interest expense includes original GIC amounts and debit amended GIC amounts
    • Total net assessable interest income includes credit amended GIC amounts, remitted GIC amounts and amendments to GIC remission amounts.

    ATO systems differentiate between account types. Consequently, GIC applied to a fringe benefits tax account or income tax account will not be shown on an RBA and are notified separately on a late payment or GIC notice.

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    Making payments

    Can I arrange to pay off an amount?

    If you cannot pay your tax debt on time, you can organise a payment arrangement by:

    • selecting Mail and New Message, then the Debt and lodgment subject, and then Payment arrangement request in the portal
    • phoning the ATO on our 24-hour automated service 13 72 26 and selecting option 2 if your debt is less than $25,000
    • phoning 13 11 42 to discuss your tax debt or make an arrangement to pay if your debt is more than $25,000.

    You may need to provide written details of your financial position, including a statement of assets and liabilities, as well as details of income and expenditure. In addition, detail the steps you have taken to obtain funds to pay your tax debt, as well as how you will meet future tax debts on time. You may be given extra time to pay, or may pay the debt in instalments, depending on your particular circumstances.

    Can I make a payment online?

    No. The Payment options details screen simply displays account information and payment methods.

    However, you can link to the BPAY site and make a payment there, provided you have made arrangements with your financial institution, or pay by credit card through the link to Government Easy Pay.

    How do I check that my bank account details are correct?

    You can check your bank account details by first choosing Business registration details in the left navigation bar and then choosing the Financial institution details radio button. The financial institution details currently recorded will be displayed.

    You can update them if necessary.

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We are committed to providing you with advice and guidance you can rely on, so we make every effort to ensure that what we give you is correct.

If you follow our advice or guidance and it turns out to be incorrect, or it is misleading and you make a mistake as a result, we will take that into account when determining what action, if any, we should take.

Some of the advice and guidance on this website applies to a specific financial year. This is clearly marked. Make sure you have the information for the right year before making decisions based on that information.

If you feel that our advice and guidance does not fully cover your circumstances, or you are unsure how it applies to you, contact us or seek professional advice.

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