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  • Disaster events

    If you or your clients are affected by a disaster that causes major disruption to life or business we can help by:

    • deferring the lodgment of activity statements or tax returns, without penalty
    • providing extra time to pay tax debts, without incurring general interest charges (GIC)
    • agreeing on a plan to pay tax in instalments
    • remitting any penalties automatically imposed during the disaster
    • prioritising refunds
    • refunding amounts credited to existing debts, when the client has entered into a deferral to pay or an arrangement to pay their tax debts
    • allowing farmers in identified impacted postcodes who have received a lodgment and payment deferral, to use simplified fuel tax credits to work out their claims, regardless of how much they claim each year
    • making field visits to help with reconstructing tax records and making reasonable estimates.

    When appropriate, your clients may also consider varying their pay as you go (PAYG) instalments.

    See also:

    COVID-19

    We are committed to supporting the Australian community to access the help on offer and working with people to get through this difficult time.

    If you are having difficulties meeting your tax and super obligations because of COVID-19, we are here to help you and your clients in this rapidly changing situation.

    You can:

    • visit COVID-19 for more information on the support options available
    • phone 1800 700 724 to talk to us about assistance for you or your clients
    • let your clients know that they can phone our Emergency Support Infoline on 1800 806 218 for help.

    Bushfire help

    If you or your clients are affected by bushfire we have a range of support options, including automatic deferrals for lodgment and payments if you are in an identified impacted postcode.

    You can:

    • visit Bushfires 2019–20 for information and a list of impacted postcodes
    • phone 1800 700 724 to talk to us about help for you or your clients
    • let your clients know that they can phone our Emergency Support Infoline on 1800 806 218 for help.

    Drought help

    If you or your clients are affected by drought we have a dedicated Drought help page where you can find out about the help available.

    Or you can:

    • phone our Registered Agent Disaster Infoline on 1800 700 724
    • let your clients know that they can phone our Emergency Support Infoline on 1800 806 218.

    Additional time to lodge and pay

    In some cases we use a list of identified impacted postcodes to automatically defer lodgment dates to people and businesses impacted by a major disruptive event.

    This means that if you or your clients are in one of the impacted postcodes you do not need to request a deferral.

    If you or your clients are not in an impacted postcode and lodgment has not been automatically deferred, or the extension is not long enough for you or your client, contact us as soon as possible.

    If you have a small number of clients needing a deferral due to a major disruptive event, and we haven't automatically provided a deferral, you can request a lodgment deferral through Online services for agentsExternal Link.

    Requests for additional time to lodge documents covered by your lodgment program will be allowed automatically if your request meets certain guidelines. If your request falls outside these guidelines, we will consider it on a case-by-case basis, in line with the Lodgment obligations, due dates and deferrals – Practice Statement.

    You can also request additional time to pay at the same time as requesting a lodgment deferral.

    If your clients' lodgments are up to date, but they cannot pay their tax debts on time, or would like to request remission of penalties or interest, phone us on 1800 700 724 to discuss their circumstances.

    See also:

    Long-term support for your lodgment program

    We can help you get your lodgment program back on track if:

    • you have a large number of clients that have been seriously affected by a major disruptive event
    • your practice has been damaged or affected in other ways by a major disruptive event.

    See also:

    Reconstructing records

    For individuals

    We can help if you have clients who have lost their records due to a major disruptive event by:

    • making on-site visits to help them    
      • reconstruct their lost or destroyed tax records, or
      • work out reasonable estimates if their records cannot be reconstructed
    • providing information we keep on record, such as tax returns, notices of assessment and payment summaries or income statements
    • speaking with third parties if appropriate
    • working closely with you as a tax professional.

    If you reconstruct records on your client's behalf

    If you wish to help your clients reconstruct their records or make reasonable estimates, we ask that you follow a process similar to ours:

    • ask for information from employers, for example, PAYG payment summaries or income statements
    • use information from bank accounts where income was regularly deposited
    • consider contributions made to super funds.

    When to make a reasonable estimate

    We will accept a reasonable estimate if your client's records cannot be reconstructed,. Each client must provide a signed letter declaring their estimate is true and correct and we will supply a Reasonable estimate pro-forma for them to complete.

    For business

    We can help if you have business clients who have lost their records due to a major disruptive event by:

    • providing on-site visits to help them    
      • reconstruct lost or destroyed tax records, or
      • work out reasonable estimates if their records cannot be reconstructed
    • providing information we keep on record
    • speaking with third parties if appropriate
    • working closely with you as a tax professional.

    Records we can provide

    We can help by providing records of your clients':

    • activity statements and tax returns, if lodged
    • pay as you go (withholding) annual reports, if lodged by employers.

    If you reconstruct records on your client's behalf

    If you wish to help your clients reconstruct their records or make reasonable estimates, we ask that you follow a process similar to ours:

    • use bank and other third-party information, including information from suppliers
    • use activity statements that have already been lodged, along with information from the affected business or individual, to reconstruct their tax returns
    • consider all information we have on record to work out a trend-based average, preferably over three years, this average includes    
      • tax statistics
      • other external industry norms and factors in economic events.

    When to make a reasonable estimate

    We will accept a reasonable estimate if your client's records cannot be reconstructed, However, each client must provide a signed letter declaring their estimate is true and correct and we will supply a Reasonable estimate pro-forma for them to complete.

    Contact us

    If you need information about ways to help your clients affected by a major disruptive event phone 1800 700 724.

    Last modified: 07 May 2020QC 43989