Show download pdf controls
  • Getting started

    The eSAT icons will be installed to your desktop as part of the installation process.

    You can select the mode you want to access:

    • live mode – icon on your desktop with an image of a magnifying glass over books with 'eSAT' above it
    • training mode – icon on your desktop with the image of a magnifying glass with 'eSAT' above it.

    Live mode icon shows a magnifying glass over a stack of books with the text eSAT over a blue background.

    Training mode icon shows a magnifying glass with eSAT written above it on a yellow background.

    If you didn't set up your preferences when you completed the installation process, you'll need to complete the set-up the first time you access eSAT. The preferences input screen will appear before you can progress to eSAT.

    Setting up auditor and fund details

    We recommend that you use the training mode to practice using eSAT and learn about its features.

    Before you start work using eSAT, set up the auditor and fund details.

    Entering auditor details

    Set up auditor details for later inclusion of this information in reports. Select Auditors from the menu and enter details of each auditor who will be using eSAT.

    These details can be updated at any time but changing an auditor's details won't update any reports that are already lodged with us.

    Entering fund details

    To help manage client records, set up details for each fund that you audit annually. Select Funds from the menu and enter details for each fund. You can add new funds at any time. You can remove a fund only if it is not associated with a job.

    You can update these details at any time but changing a fund's details won't update any ACRs that you have already lodged with us.

    eSAT permits you to import a list of clients from a comma separated value (CSV) file. You can create CSV files in Microsoft Excel or an equivalent open source program. The data must be in the first two columns and there must not be any column headings. The first column must contain the name of the fund. The second column must contain the fund's Australian business number (ABN).

    Other information

    Use the free text field to add details about the fund, for example:

    • trustee name
    • phone number.

    This information is not included in reports you send to us.

    The Save function is available throughout eSAT. You can save your work as you progress. If you have changed the details for a fund or job and have not saved them, you will be asked if want to save your changes before exiting.

    The auto-save function (set at five-minute intervals) can be enabled or disabled at the Preferences screen.

    Starting a job

    The eSAT is a flexible system and you can choose different navigational paths, except when preparing an ACR. The following steps will take you through a logical sequence to create and lodge an ACR.

    If you are using eSAT for the first time, add your auditor details before starting a job.

    Step 1: Select a fund

    If you have already added fund details into eSAT, the search function will allow you to locate the fund you wish to work on. Otherwise, add a new fund by going to the Funds menu and adding a fund. To progress the job, you can either:

    • select the Next button
    • double click on the name of the fund.

    From the Jobs screen, select the New job button and select the year of audit.

    Step 2: Select the year of audit

    If you are undertaking a 2006–07 financial year or prior financial year audit, you can choose to create either a:

    • contravention report – prepare and lodge an ACR to report contraventions to us
    • audit complete advice – lodge a report to tell us that you have completed an audit of a fund and there are no reportable contraventions.

    If you select the 2008 or later year, you'll be taken to CAS questions. You can continue and use the CAS questions to help you identify contraventions. You can choose to answer all, some or none of these questions.

    When your response to a CAS question identifies a contravention, you'll automatically be taken to the Events screen. You can choose to add an event at this time or close the window and continue working through the questions. Any contraventions identified will be available for selection from the Events screen later.

    Go directly to the Contravention report using the left-hand navigation menu or go directly to the Audit complete advice (ACA).

    You can only have one active, in-progress report per year for a fund. This means you cannot create an ACR if you have an active ACA and vice versa. The ACA or ACR options in the menu are disabled where an active report exists.

    Step 3: Adding an event

    An event is an action or inaction by trustees that may lead, or has led, to one or more contraventions. You should enter any reportable sections or regulations for an event, together with other relevant information describing the event and any rectification action taken.

    We provide information in eSAT to help you use the Events screen.

    All mandatory information must be entered before you can add the event to the Contravention report. If you aren't required to report the event, you don't have to complete this information.

    Name each event to make it easy to identify when adding associated reportable sections and regulations.

    Step 4: Adding a contravention to an event

    There are two ways to add identified contraventions to an event.



    Adding a contravention to an event identified using Compliance audit support

    Select the reportable contraventions related to the event by selecting the Add contraventions to event button.
    Complete the mandatory fields with the required detail for each section or regulation you add.

    Adding a manual contravention to an event

    Manually add a contravention that needs to be reported by selecting the Select a manual section. Choose the relevant section or regulation from the drop-down menu and select the Add manual section button.

    You can add each identified contravention to more than one event, but only once to each event.

    Step 5: Financial position of the SMSF

    While performing your duties, did you form an opinion that the SMSF’s financial position is, or may become, unsatisfactory?

    Select Yes or No here.

    If you select Yes, explain why you formed that opinion.

    Where possible, clarify if the unsatisfactory position is due to a regulatory breach or other circumstances.

    Step 6: Other regulatory information

    Do you want to provide additional information about the fund or trustees that you think could help us perform our function as the regulator of SMSFs?

    Please select Yes or No here.

    If you select Yes you are consenting under paragraph 14ZZW(2)(e) of the Taxation Administration Act 1953 for the purposes of the Whistleblower legislation, to the disclosing to the Commissioner, your identity (if required) when using this information in administering any taxation laws.

    If you would like to keep your identity confidential, do not complete this section. You can make a disclosure by completing the tip-off form.

    The form is available at:

    Alternatively, you can phone in your tip-off on 1800 060 062.

    Step 7: Preparing and lodging the ACR

    The Contravention report menu provides you with wizard-style navigation. As you complete each screen, select the Next button. The options listed in the left-hand navigation sub-menu only become enabled after you complete the subsequent screen and validate the information.

    You can preview the completed report before you lodge it.

    After you select the Lodge report button, a message will confirm that you have lodged the ACR successfully.

    You'll be asked if you have completed the job. Unless you have more than six events to report or have more details to add to the job, you should change the status to 'completed' when prompted. If you have more than six events, you'll need to complete another ACR.

    Step 8: Reviewing the status of the job

    To review the status of the job after lodging a report, go to the Jobs screen. The job status will have changed from 'in-progress' to 'completed' if you responded positively to the prompt when you lodged. The report type will show as 'lodged', and the lodgment date will be displayed in the Jobs screen.

    Backing up your data

    We recommend that you regularly back up the repository in the event of a system or computer failure.

    eSAT data is not stored on ATO servers. It is located in the repository at the location specified in Preferences.

    You should choose the appropriate storage media to back up your data, based on the size of your fund repository.

    As eSAT is available online, you don't need to back up the software, only your repository. You should also keep a record of the data repository location and any user-specified system settings that aren't the default settings used by the eSAT installation wizard.

    Training mode

    The eSAT includes 'live' and 'training' modes. The training mode allows you to simulate live scenarios and explore the eSAT features, including the CAS and reference facility. It also allows you to simulate report lodging without transmitting any information to us.

    You cannot access the live and training modes at the same time.

    To use training mode, select the eSAT training icon on your desktop. When you are in training mode, the word training appears on the top and bottom of every screen.

    User names, auditor names, fund names and job files used in the training environment aren't used in the live environment, and vice versa.

    You can use the following numbers when you are in training mode and need an ABN:

    • 95444111000
    • 21333111000
    • 80555111000
    • 36222111000
    • 25888444000
    • 50777111000
    • 20999111000
    • 18111222000
    • 74111333000
    • 41111444000
    • 77333222000
    • 62444222000
    • 47555222000
    • 17777222000
    • 91888222000
    • 73777333000
    • 58888333000
    • 14555333000
    • 59222333000
    • 40777444000

    You must not use the above numbers for any other purpose.

    eSAT help files

    Inbuilt files, including information and warning messages, help you understand eSAT features. To access the help files, select Help from the top menu or press your keyboard's F1 key.

    There is also contextual help to provide you guidance for each of the CAS questions. To access this help, select the information icon next to the question.

    The reference facility provides you with guidance such as case studies and links to legislation to help you make decisions when undertaking a compliance audit.

    User guide

    The Electronic superannuation audit tool (eSAT) user guide is a useful resource.

    Last modified: 01 Feb 2021QC 21192