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How to Deal With an Overdue Company Tax Return

By Opulent Accountants|Wednesday Sep 26, 2018

When it comes to submitting tax documentation to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) for your business, it often feels like a never ending stream of IAS, BAS and Tax Returns – among many others. Keeping up with business taxation paperwork across all four quarters of the year requires a lot of time and attention, so it’s all too easy to find yourself notified of an overdue company tax return. But how your business approaches the overdue tax return can make all the difference. Opulent Accountants is here to help you take the less stressful approach to your company tax return. 

First Step – Make a Payment Before Submitting Your Return 

Lodging an overdue company tax return can be financially costly, but there are ways to reduce any penalties or late charges. If the return shows a tax payment is required, the ATO might impose an additional penalty interest rate that remains on there until the tax debt is paid in full. However, it’s possible to avoid this penalty interest rate by making a tax payment before submitting your overdue tax return. Whether you make just a partial payment or pay in full, anything paid off before lodging your late company tax return is not subjected to the penalty interest rate. 

Seek the Assistance and Advice of a Qualified Tax Agent

Acquiring the help of a certified and experienced tax accountant is particularly prudent when dealing with an overdue tax return, as they may be able to help you negotiate extensions for payment due dates. A registered tax accountant can also submit your company tax return through what the ATO refers to as the Safe Harbour Exemption. Basically, if your overdue tax return has been late for lodgement due to the actions of your tax agent, then it can be submitted via the Safe Harbour Exemption without penalty or additional charges.

Get the Upper Hand – If it’s Available 

If you’re in a position where you can take a preventative approach and get the upper hand, specifically if you are able to contact and advise the ATO that your overdue company tax return is likely to be late and provide a sufficient reason, they might be able to extend the date for you. 

For more company tax return advice and assistance, get in touch with the in-house CPA Tax Accountant at Opulent Accountants today. Call us at +61 (3) 8838 8726 or +61 (0) 423 272 600, or send us an email at


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