Single touch payroll to kick off next month

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From next month many employers will start reporting to the ATO in real time from their payroll software each time they pay their employees.

Known as single touch payroll (STP), the new system means employers will send tax and super information to the ATO electronically when they run their payroll. This includes their employees’ salaries and wages, pay as you go (PAYG) withholding and super information.

ATO Assistant Commissioner John Shepherd says employers with 20 or more employees need to plan for STP before July 1.

“With (a few weeks) to go our message is clear: know when and how your software will be updated, get your business STP ready or ask us for more time if you need it,” he said.

Some payroll software providers have been given a later start date (a deferral) by the ATO, which covers their employer clients.

“Ask your software provider if they have a deferral from the ATO and check it applies to the software version you’re using. If they do, you’ll start reporting on or before that deferral date, not on July 1,” Mr Shepherd said.

“If your software will be ready by July 1, but you need more time, apply for your own deferral using our online form. You’ll need to make sure you provide us with the right information.”