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  • Deferrals

    Under STP, there are deferrals for:

    • commencing your reporting
    • submitting particular reports.

    There are different ways to apply, depending on the type of deferral.

    On this page:

    Transitional deferrals

    A transitional deferral should be used if you need more time to get ready for STP reporting.

    Deferrals will be considered if you:

    • need more time to start STP reporting
    • are unable to get ready by your software provider's deferred start date
    • are transitioning to a new STP-enabled solution
    • are using customised payroll software and need time to configure and test it
    • have complex payroll arrangements and need additional time to transition
    • have entered administration or liquidation
    • have been impacted by a natural disaster
    • are affected by other circumstances out of your control.

    Find out about:

    Employers with 19 or less employees

    If you're not ready to start reporting, you or your registered agent can ask us for a deferral by:

    • logging in to the Business Portal and selecting Manage employees then STP deferrals and exemptions
    • phoning 13 28 66

    In many cases we'll approve your deferral straight away. If we need more information, we will let you know.

    Employers with 20 or more employees

    Your software provider may have applied to us for a later start date for STP reporting. This deferral would cover you as an existing client.

    If you are covered by your software provider's deferral, you will need to start reporting on or before the deferral date. Your provider will give you this date and a deferral reference number (DRN). This verifies they have a deferral for you. You don't need to give this to us – just keep it for your own records.

    If you're not able to start reporting by your software provider's deferral date, you or your registered agent can apply for your own deferral by:

    • logging in to the Business Portal
    • selecting Manage employees then STP deferrals and exemptions.

    You need to provide supporting evidence, through a portal mail message, to help us understand your circumstances:

    • Select the message topic General questions/problems/help.
    • Enter the message subject 'Single Touch Payroll enquiries'.

    If we need more information, we will let you know.

    Registered agents

    You must be a registered tax or BAS agentExternal Link to report through STP for your clients.

    Payroll services include processing payroll on behalf of the employer. They also include performing payroll-related functions, such as interpreting legislation and helping employers to calculate their PAYG withholding and super guarantee liability.

    Client not ready to report

    If one of your employer clients will not be ready to report, you can apply for a deferral through:

    • Tax or BAS Agent Portal – select Client's employer obligations then STP deferrals or exemptions
    • Online services for agents – select Business then STP deferrals and exemptions.

    For your clients with 19 or less employees you will, in most cases, receive a response in real-time. If we need more information, we will let you know.

    For your clients with 20 or more employees, you will need to provide supporting evidence, through a portal mail message, to help us understand their circumstances:

    • Select the message topic General questions / problems / help.
    • Enter the message subject 'Single Touch Payroll enquiries'.

    If you need to submit a request on behalf of multiple clients, you can use the Registered agent bulk client request form.

    Agent not ready to report

    You can use the Registered agent bulk client request form if you are a registered tax or BAS agent and you will not be ready to report because:

    • the payroll software you use
      • has a deferred start date and you need additional time to implement STP beyond that date
      • is STP-enabled but you need additional time to implement STP
      • is discontinued, and you need additional time to implement new STP-enabled payroll software
       
    • the payroll software your client uses is STP-enabled but you need additional time to implement the solution across all relevant clients
    • there are other extenuating circumstances where you or your clients require additional time to implement STP.

    When you apply for a deferral, list all the clients who need to be covered by the deferral. If granted, you or your employer clients will need to start reporting through STP on, or before, the deferral date granted.

    If we need more information about your deferral request, we will let you know.

    See also:

    Unreliable or no internet service

    If you live in an area where there is no internet connection, or the connection is unreliable, this will impact your ability to report through STP.

    We understand you may experience:

    • an inability to connect to the internet
    • a connection that requires multiple attempts
    • dropouts or disconnections
    • exceedingly slow data transfer.

    You or your registered tax or BAS agent can apply for a deferral or exemption through:

    • the Business Portal (employers) – select Manage employees then STP deferrals or exemptions
    • the Tax or BAS Agent Portal – select Client's employer obligations then STP deferrals or exemptions
    • Online services for agents – select Business then STP deferrals and exemptions.

    You can also phone us on 13 28 66 if you are unable to lodge a portal request.

    When you lodge your request or phone us, we will discuss your circumstances and may offer more time to lodge your STP report each time you run your payroll. You will need to provide evidence and meet our requirements.

    Other types of deferrals

    Operational deferral

    If you have already started reporting through STP and you won't be able to report for a period of time due to special circumstances, you or your registered agent can apply for an operational deferral.

    Recurring deferral

    If there are special circumstances affecting your ability to regularly report on, or before, pay day, you can apply for a recurring deferral. An example would be if you regularly experience intermittent internet connectivity issues which means we might receive your report a couple of days after pay day.

    No requirement to report

    If you cease to have a PAYG withholding obligation for part of the year, you can let us know that you have no requirement to submit STP reports for that period.

    Small business reporting concession

    Eligible micro employers (1–4 employees) can choose to report quarterly and lodge at the same time as they lodge their activity statement through their registered agents. Only registered agents can apply for this concession on behalf of their clients.

    Finalisation declaration deferral

    At the end of the financial year, you need to finalise the STP information you've reported by 31 July in 2020, and 14 July for each following year. If you are unable to do this by the due date, you can apply for additional time.

    How to apply

    You or your registered tax or BAS agent can apply for these deferral types through:

    • the Business Portal (employers) – select Manage employees then STP deferrals or exemptions
    • the Tax or BAS Agent Portal – select Client's employer obligations then STP deferrals or exemptions
    • Online services for agents – select Business then STP deferrals and exemptions.
    Last modified: 01 Oct 2019QC 56186