The ATO is in the process of writing to taxpayers that may be eligible to have their tax debts disclosed to credit reporting bureaus (‘CRBs’).
The ATO can potentially report outstanding tax debts to a CRB where the following criteria are satisfied:
Excluded entities are a deductible gift recipient, a complying superannuation fund, a registered charity and government entities.
The purpose of this letter from the ATO is to raise awareness of the actions that the ATO can now take under the Disclosure of Business tax debts measure.
The letter will be sent to all taxpayers with business tax debts that currently meet the criteria (discussed above) for disclosure.
This letter from the ATO provides business taxpayers with information on how to effectively engage with the ATO to manage their tax debt.
Taxpayers can avoid disclosure to a CRB by making payment in full or negotiating a payment plan.
If an eligible taxpayer does not take steps to actively manage their debt, they will remain eligible for disclosure.
Before the ATO takes any final action to disclose a tax debt, it will issue the taxpayer with a formal Intent to Disclose Notice.
If a taxpayer receives an Intent Notice asking them to 'Act now or your debt will be disclosed to credit reporting bureaus', the taxpayer or their tax agent must contact the ATO within 28 days of receiving the notice to discuss how the taxpayer will manage their debt.
It is crucial for taxpayers to engage with the ATO early before their debts become unmanageable.
Editor: If the ATO reports a taxpayer that has an outstanding debt to a CRB, this can have a negative impact on the client’s credit rating. This in turn may affect the client’s ability to borrow from banks and other financial institutions.
For more information, visit the Australian
Ref: ATO website, 28 March 2022, Disclosure of business tax debts