The Australian Taxation Office is encouraging self-lodgers who are yet to hand in their tax return to use myTax, the revenue collection agency’s new streamlined system designed for those with straightforward tax affairs.
There is only two weeks left until the 31 October deadline, a factor that Assistant Commissioner Karen Anstis says is all the more reason to use myTax.
“What we’re hearing is that myTax has made lodging online so much easier and people are completing their tax much faster,” Ms Anstis says.
“Some people have told us that they’ve lodge in as little as 5 to 10 minutes with myTax.”
Ms Anstis says the ATO has received “overwhelmingly positive” feedback from the almost 800,000 people who lodged returns using the new system.
MyTax consists of 10 main screens and uses prefilling to automatically place employer details and information from banks and government agencies, thus providing a quicker and easier way to lodge a return.
The ATO says that this year has seen four million people claim work-related expenses worth around ten billion dollars, but remind people that claiming expenses correctly will reduce the risk of being asked to provide evidence of expenses.
“One taxpayer claimed nearly $55,000 in phone and internet, home office, hairdressing and clothing expenses without providing sufficient information to support their claims,” said Ms Anstis.
The ATO says the taxpayer’s claims were rejected in full, requiring them to pay additional tax, penalties and interest charges totalling $30,000.