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  • Disaster events

    If you or your clients are affected by a major incident or natural disaster that causes disruption to life or business, we'll work with you to help sort out you or your clients' tax affairs.

    Depending on the situation, we may be able to:

    • give extra time to pay tax or lodge tax forms such as activity statements or other forms
    • find your or your client's tax file number (TFN) by verifying identity using key information such as date of birth, address and bank account details
    • re-issue documents including income tax returns, activity statements and notices of assessment (for example if needed to access government payments or concessions)
    • help you reconstruct tax records that are lost or damaged so you can claim entitlements including income tax deductions or access government payments
    • prioritise any refunds owed to you or your client
    • set up a payment plan tailored to your or your client's individual situation
    • remit penalties or interest charged during the time you or your client have been affected.

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

    For assistance:

    • visit Dealing with disasters for information
    • phone 1800 806 218 to talk to us about help for you or your clients.

    If you or your clients have been impacted by a recent event or disaster, visit:

    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 both     
      • reconstruct their lost or destroyed tax records
      • 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 both     
      • reconstruct lost or destroyed tax records
      • 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 806 218.

    Last modified: 08 Feb 2021QC 43989