Single Touch Payroll due 1st July 2018

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Single Touch Payroll due 1st July 2018

The ATO is changing the way that you report payroll details. As from the 1st July 2018 the government is phasing in Single Touch Payroll reporting for employers with 20 or more staff.

Those currently using Xero, Myob, Quickbooks or Attaché and those on other online payroll software should not have any extra work to do except for the below in relation to reporting.

You will need to complete a headcount of the employees in your business as per the details below to see if these new rules apply to you this year.

Employee headcount

April 1, 2018 is the date stipulated by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) to count the employees on your payroll. Note that this can be done after 1 April, but you need to count the employees who were on your payroll on 1 April.

If you have 20 or more employees on 1 April, you will need to start Single Touch Payroll (STP) reporting from 1 July 2018. If you have 19 or less employees, your deadline is 1 July 2019.

– Count each employee, not the full-time equivalent
– The headcount is a bit like the census. You can do it after 1 April but you need to count the employees who were on your payroll on 1 April
– If you do have 20 or more employees, you will need to continue reporting through STP even if your employee numbers drop to 19 or less – unless you apply for and are granted an exemption
– The headcount is a self-assessment. You do not need to notify the ATO of your employee numbers
– If you are part of a company group, you must include the total number of employees employed by all member companies of the wholly-owned group.

Include in your headcount:
Full-time employees
Part-time employees
Casual employees who are on the payroll on 1 April and worked at any time in March
Employees based overseas
Any employee who is absent or on leave (paid or unpaid)
Seasonal employees (staff who are engaged short term to meet a regular peak workload, for example, harvest workers).

Do not include in your headcount:
Any employees who ceased work before 1 April
Casual employees who did not work in March
Independent contractors
Staff provided by a third-party labour hire organisation
Company directors
Office holders
Religious practitioners

Directors, office holders and religious practitioners are not included in the headcount. They are not considered employees within the common law meaning of the term. However, when you start reporting through STP you will need to report their payment information. This is because the payments are subject to withholding and are currently reported in the Individual non-business payment summary.

If you have any queries regarding the above, or would like any further information, please contact our office via email or call us on (02) 4455 5333.

About the Author:

David Howells
David is passionate about helping clients improve their businesses and achieve their goals. He is an expert Auditor who also specializes in Business Advisory, Strategic Tax Planning, and compliance of Not-For-Profits & Self-Managed Super Funds.Contact David via email or call 02 4455 5333.