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Take Note Of Australia's Most Important Bookkeeping Dates

time 481444 1280Aside from mastering the skills of business management, a business owner is also expected to be well acquainted with the concept of deadlines. Proscratination is not an option especially when it comes to making payments. The dates that you need to pay attention to are the filing dates and the tax deadlines. These refer to the bookkeeping dates and falling behind your payment schedule can create a ripple effect on your business.  

Pay as You Go Withholding

Pay as You Go (PAYG) withholding refers to the summary of payments that employees made based on a specified period of time. Your business makes the payment and the summary shows the amount withheld. The statement must be presented if your business did not withhold payments. You must take note that the deadline for PAYG withholding is always 21 days after the end of the month or 28 days after the end of the quarter. It also depends on the system you have chosen. 

Business Activity Statements

All Australian businesses must fulfill the tax obligations such as securing business activity statements. Each month, business owners are required to make payments. The payments should be lodged 21 days after the last day of the month. However, if you choose to pay on a quarterly basis, your payment needs to be made by the 28th day after the quarter. For the December quarter, payments are not due until February.  

Annual Withholding Declarations

There is a good reason employees are required to give their withholding declaration and one of which is to claim entitlement. Claiming entitlement enables employees to reduce the amount withheld from their wages. It can also work in the opposite way by increasing the amount of money withheld from each payment. If there are changes in the employment status or address of your employee, the declaration can also provide you enough information about these changes. Make sure you meet the deadline for tax declaration, which is on August 14th. Once you receive the declaration, you need to make changes to the employees' payments from the very first payment.  

Payment Summaries 

The purpose of payment summaries is to detail the payment that you have made to non-employees. The type of payments that fall under this category is the payment you made under a labour-hire arrangement and voluntary agreement. Take note that the due for the payment summaries is every 14th of July.  

Superannuation  

The funds that will be made available upon retirement are also included in superannuation. Your task as an employer is to set aside a portion of the employee's wages into a superannuation fund. The employees also have a choice of putting additonal funds into the account. It is essential for employers to pay superannuation fees regularly. The payment can either be made on a monthly or quarterly basis. Payment for superannuation must be made 28 days after the established period of time. 

Both business owners and bookkeepers must understand the significance of these dates. If you want to keep your business and finances in check, it is imperative that you take note of these dates. You can avoid penalities if you know when payment should be made. 

Get Ready For Superstream

In a nutshell, Superstream is an advanced package dedicated to improving everyday superannuation transactions. The process of submitting payments and essential data will be made much easier with the use of this system. Employers with more than 20 employees will have until June 30, 2015 to complete the requirements. However if a company has less than 20 employees, employers need to comply with the requirements until June 30, 2016. To ensure that employers are ready for these changes, it is important that they also prepare contribution data following the electronic format. The employers will adopt the new standard by June 30 2017. All employers that are making super contributions are mandated to use SuperStream.

Reasons for introducing SuperStream:calculator 695084 1280

It is every employer’s obligation to ensure that employee contributions are paid in a consistent and timely manner. With this new system, discrepancies will be prevented because transactions are done electronically.

Before employers can use SuperStream, changes have to be made with their existing system. Otherwise, there will be some issues with adopting SuperStream. The software that employers need to use should be compatible with SuperStream. Employers can either upgrade their payroll software or a third party service provider. For employers with less than 20 employees, another option to consider is using a commercial clearing house. This is also referred to as free Small Business Superannuation. Since this is a completely different approach, employers will also be required to collect additional information for the electronic processing to take place. The essential information includes electronic service address, bank account details, ABN and unique superannuation identifier.

The Significant Benefits of Superstream to Employers and Employees:

Employers

• Employers will only spend less amount of time dealing with fund queries and data issues.
• Employers save on the cost of processing payment and contributions.
• Since SuperStream only uses a single channel, employers can focus on a systematic process for handling employee contribution.
• Superannuation obligations become less stressful because there is a steady flow of information and cash.

Employees

• Employees will have greater peace of mind as payment processing will be less prone to errors.
• Payments and contributions are processed faster than using the old approach.
• Employees will have better retirement savings as the new system is more efficient.
• Employees will be notified once their contributions have been received.

How does SuperStream work?

SuperStream has four elements, which are essential for each transaction being made:

• Payment methods which have been set using standard electronic format.
• Standard message structure designed for sending and receiving notifications or messages when funds have been received.
• Data format so employees receive reports of their contributions.
• Business terms and definitions used for describing employees’ contributions.

While these are considered technical details of SuperStream, employers should not worry about it so long as compliance with the requirements is observed. In the event SuperStream is prevented from sending notifications of contributions due to internet outages or technical issues, the alternative channels will be used such as paper and electronic options. Employers must also include the reasons for using these options. These contributions cannot be rejected if these reasons are indicated.

For employers to get a better grasp of this new system, support tools will also be provided and these include support mailbox, seminars, self-help materials, which can be accessed online and links to the system’s framework.

­ Questions? Give Andrew a call 0450 605 592

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