The IGT recommends that, in consultation and collaboration with external stakeholders, the ATO undertake a pilot to assess the utility and effectiveness of using trained in-house ATO officers to act as facilitators to assist in resolving smaller, less complex disputes.
We agreed with this recommendation and implementation was completed on 29 May 2014.
Following consultation with members of the Dispute Resolution sub-committee of the National Tax Liaison Group, we undertook a pilot to assess the utility and effectiveness of using trained in-house officers to act as facilitators to assist in resolving smaller, less complex disputes. The pilot has now been finalised and an evaluation report was completed.
The pilot found in-house facilitated conferences were timely and effective in resolving less complex indirect tax disputes. Taxpayers and representatives were generally comfortable with having one of our officers as facilitator. It also identified challenges, benefits and where facilitation can best be used.