Show download pdf controls
  • Report through Single Touch Payroll

    We have developed guidelines to help you report through STP when you're ready. You can also access and print out a PDF version of the guidelines.

    The employer guidelines include more detailed information about all the requirements of STP, such as what you need to report, the rules of reporting, making corrections and finalising your report at the end of the financial year.

    Next step:

    Find out about:


    This list includes some of the common errors we've seen with STP reports.

    Table: STP troubleshooting information for employers and intermediaries

    Reporting issues

    What you need to do

    You have started reporting and your software is not connecting to the ATO.

    See our Start reporting checklist. You need to make sure you have taken these steps before you submit your first report.

    There are different methods for connecting your software to the ATO. In most cases, your software provider will tell you how to do this. This will be part of your STP setup.

    You have submitted your first STP report and you want to know if we have received it.

    A confirmation message will be sent once an STP report has been received by the ATO. This will generally be displayed in your software. You can also check the Business Portal to see the STP reports that have been lodged.

    We will also send a welcome letter to all employers once they start reporting through STP.

    There is no need to call us to confirm your report has been received by the ATO.

    You use multiple payroll solutions and you are unsure about the business management software (BMS) ID to use.

    You can report separately from each payroll solution. Most products will allocate the BMS ID for you. Talk to your software provider to find out about the BMS ID you should use.

    See also: The rules of reporting through Single Touch Payroll

    If you use the wrong BMS ID, your employees may not see the right information in ATO Online through myGov, and this could affect their pre-filling at tax time.

    You submitted an STP report in error, or it contained significant incorrect data.

    You can submit a full file replacement within a 24 hour period.

    A full file replacement gives you the ability to completely replace the latest STP report you sent to us in error, or which contained significant incorrect data.

    You have submitted several full file replacements for the same pay period and they have failed.

    A full file replacement can only be submitted once within a 24-hour period.

    You should wait 24 hours before attempting to submit again. If this fails again, talk to your software provider.

    You have submitted your STP report several days after paying your employees.

    The law requires you to submit your STP report on or before the day you pay your employees.

    If you make an out-of-cycle payment, this can be reported in your next regular pay cycle.

    We will not be issuing penalties for late reporting in the first year of STP reporting.

    However, if you are consistently late submitting your reports, you can expect us to issue reminders and you may be subject to penalties after the first twelve months of STP reporting.

    You have used an exception tax file number (TFN) for an employee who has not provided you with one yet (for example, you used 000000000).

    You can temporarily use a substitute TFN. However, you need to update your employee's information with the correct TFN as soon as it's available.

    When you use a substitute TFN, the STP information you report cannot be matched to your employee and they will not be able to see their year-to-date tax and super information in myGov.

    Continuing to use a substitute TFN will affect your employee's pre-filled data at tax time.

    You have not entered your own ABN in your STP report.

    You must report your own ABN.

    If you use an incorrect ABN we are not able to match the information you report to the records of your business entity, or your employees' myGov account.

    You are unsure if you need to report superannuation.

    You must report superannuation amounts through STP.

    For each employee, make sure you report the following each pay period:

    • year-to-date employer super liability
    • ordinary time earnings (OTE) amounts.

    If you pay above the minimum SG liability, you can report that amount.

    If your year-to-date super liability for an employee is zero, do not leave the field blank - report zero.

    See also: The rules of reporting through Single Touch Payroll for more information.

    You have deleted unused or legacy pay codes (such as overtime allowances) from your payroll software.

    Deleting pay codes may affect the accuracy of your STP data. While your software may allow you to do this, you should check if the pay code you are deleting has been used in a previous STP report in the same financial year.

    If you delete a pay code, check your data is correct before submitting your report.

    You are a related entity and you need to submit STP reports on behalf of other ABNs in the group.

    If a related entity will be submitting STP reports on behalf of other ABNs within a group, that entity needs to have a business authority to lodge on your behalf.

    Check which of the following applies to determine how to create this authority:

    The entity can choose the permission they wish to give you. This tells us what they want you to be able to do or see on their behalf. The STP permission is called 'Payroll event form'.

    Your software is requesting an email address for each employee.

    Only enter valid email addresses for your employees. Although it's not mandatory, including employee email addresses will help us identify the employee if the TFN provided in the STP report does not match our records.

    If your software requires you to enter an email address for an employee, and they don't have one, ask your provider what to do.

    Do not enter a fake or invalid email address.

    You missed sending an STP report.

    Your employees may not see the correct year-to-date amounts in ATO Online until you have either submitted the missed report or lodge a subsequent STP report.

    There are a number of options available to you if you realise you have missed an STP report:

    • You can lodge the missed report, if you are able to do so.
    • If all employees in the missed report will be paid again in the next regular pay run, make sure the YTD’s reflect all amounts in the next regular pay run.
    • If some employees are not being paid again, lodge an update event within 14 days to update their YTD balance.

    If you continue to miss reports, you may be subject to Failure to Lodge penalties beyond the first year of reporting.

    Last modified: 17 Jun 2019QC 54704