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Deferrals

If you need more time to start STP reporting or to lodge particular STP reports, find out how to apply for a deferral.

Last updated 8 February 2022

Under Single Touch Payroll (STP), there are deferrals for:

  • commencing your reporting
  • lodging particular STP reports.

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

Transitional deferrals

STP reporting started from:

  • 1 July 2018 for employers with 20 or more employees
  • 1 July 2019 for employers with 19 or fewer employees.

You should only apply for a transitional deferral if you have not yet commenced reporting through STP and need more time to get ready.

This type of deferral should not be used to apply for a delayed transition to the new STP Phase 2 reporting requirements – see STP Expansion (Phase 2) delayed transitions.

Deferrals will only be considered if you have exceptional circumstances.

Find out about

Employers

If you haven't started STP reporting and need more time, you can ask us for a deferral by:

If you use a registered tax or BAS agent, they can request the deferral for you.

Registered agents

You must be a registered tax or BAS agentExternal Link to:

  • provide payroll services and report through STP for your clients
  • apply for a deferral on your client's behalf.

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 pay as you go (PAYG) withholding and super guarantee liability.

Client not ready to report

If one of your employer clients is not ready to start STP reporting, you can apply for a deferral using Online services for agents – select Business then STP deferrals and exemptions.

You're not ready to report

If you are not ready to start STP reporting due to exceptional circumstances, you can apply for a deferral using Online services for agents. Select Business, then STP deferrals and exemptions.

For more information about registered agents, visit TPB(I) 31/2016 Payroll service providersExternal Link.

Unreliable or no internet service

If you live in an area where there is no internet connection, or the connection is unreliable, this may 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:

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

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. This type of deferral should not be used to apply for a delayed transition to the new STP Phase 2 reporting requirements – see STP Expansion (Phase 2) delayed transitions.

Recurring deferral

If there are special circumstances affecting your ability to regularly report on, or before, a pay day, you can apply for a recurring deferral. This deferral allows you additional time to lodge each STP report without penalty for late lodgment.

The maximum number of additional days granted to report will be three business days.

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.

You may also apply for a recurring deferral where you are advising us that you have inbound assignees.

No requirement to report

If you have already started STP reporting and you cease to have a PAYG withholding obligation for part of the year (for example where you have no employees), you can let us know that you have no requirement to lodge STP reports for that period.

Finalisation declaration deferral

At the end of the financial year, you need to finalise the STP information you've reported.

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 using:

  • Online services for business (employers) – select Employees 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 online.

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