Are you ready for Single Touch Payroll?

If you haven’t already heard, the way you will report an employee’s tax and super information to the Australian Tax Office (ATO) is changing. This online reporting change is called Single Touch Payroll (STP).

Employers with 20 or more employees are now classified as ‘substantial employers’ and they will have mandatory STP reporting of payments such as salaries and wages, pay as you go (PAYG) withholding and superannuation information from 1 July 2018.

To find out if you are a substantial employer, the ATO states you should count the employees on your payroll as at 1 April 2018. They provide further advice on how to count, who to count and how to record the data HERE.

And for small businesses that employ less than 20 employees? STP is likely to be rolled out to you by 1 July 2019 if further legislation passes. More information is available at the ATO website 

Now some related information:

A big change that STP introduces is around Payment summaries (also referred to as Group Certificates). These summaries show payments you have made to your employees and any amounts you have withheld from those payments in a financial year (for example, for superannuation).

Under STP, employers are now providing the ATO with information each time the business makes a payment to an employee. This in turn means some employers will no longer be required to provide their employees with hardcopy payment summaries. Employees will instead see their year-to-date information online through myGov or directly from the ATO if they don’t have a myGov account.

What should you do?

Some actions we and the ATO recommend:

  • Check with your payroll service provider or payroll system vendor to confirm that they have plans in place to comply with STP reporting requirements (or seek a deferral)
  • Prepare a communication to advise your workforce when questions start to flow in. They will eventually…
  • Make sure the right people in your business know about Single Touch Payroll – especially your payroll staff.
  • Check if you are paying your employees correctly
  • Check if you are calculating your employees’ super entitlements correctly
  • Check if you are addressing overpayments correctly
  • Check your employee information is accurate, including names, addresses, date-of-birth records
  • This last point is also related to industrial record keeping requirements anway

More information is available at the ATO website

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