Small business taxpayers facing an adverse tax decision by the Australian Tax Office will now be able to contact the office of the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman for assistance.
The Small Business Concierge Service helps small businesses decide if an application to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal for review of a tax office decision is an appropriate pathway to resolution.
'It is now simpler, faster and cheaper for small businesses to address their tax disputes with the ATO, with the help of our Small Business Concierge Service,' Ombudsman Kate Carnell said. 'Our case managers will help small-business owners understand the AAT process; providing information on costs and timelines to support a timely resolution.'
The Concierge Service will provide access to a one-hour consultation with an experienced small business tax lawyer to review the facts and provide advice on the viability of the appeal.
Should an appeal be warranted, an Ombudsman case manager will help the small-business owner with the process, assisting them to compile the relevant documents to maximise the benefit of the one-hour legal consultation.
A co-payment of $100 is required from the small business taxpayer at the time of the consultation, with the balance covered by the ASBFEO.
After lodging the application with the AAT, the small-business owner will be assigned a case manager from the AAT's new Small Business Taxation Division and ASBFEO will offer an additional hour with a lawyer, at no cost to the small business.
The Ombudsman has stated that small business taxation decisions will be finalised within a turnaround time of 28 days from the date of a hearing at the AAT.
While the ASBFEO cannot give tax or legal advice to the small business taxpayer; the new service is designed to assist and support the appeal process.
'We look forward to supporting small businesses achieve fairer tax outcomes,' Ms Carnell said.
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