Small employers transition to July's Single Touch Payroll starts now

Parliament has now passed legislation to extend Single Touch Payroll (STP) reporting to include all small employers (those with fewer than 20 employees) from 1 July 2019. STP is payday reporting by employers to the ATO as it happens, this reporting having started 1 July 2018 for large employers (20+ employees).

JulyExtending STP to all employers will help ensure all Australians get their full superannuation entitlements, give greater transparency and help ensure a level playing field for small business. This initiative is also an important step in streamlining business reporting and keeping pace with the digital age, according to the ATO.

Moving to real-time digital reporting may be a big change for employers, especially small business, so the ATO will adopt a supportive, tailored approach to help you undertake this change:

  • Small businesses and other small employers currently not using commercial payroll software will not be required to purchase such software to report under STP.
  • The ATO is working with software providers to develop low and no-cost reporting solutions including simple payroll solutions, portals and mobile apps. 

The ATO's approach to extending STP will be flexible, reasonable and pragmatic. In particular, the ATO understands there will be circumstances where more time is needed to implement STP or lodge reports:

  • The ATO will offer micro employers (1 to 4 employees) help to transition to STP and a number of alternative options.
  • Small employers can start reporting any time from the 1 July start date to 30 September 2019. The ATO will grant deferrals to any small employer who requests additional time to start STP reporting.
  • No penalties for mistakes, missed or late reports for the first year.
  • STP reporting exemptions for employers experiencing hardship or in areas with intermittent or no internet connection.

In any event, make some time now to meet with the Collins Hume team to ensure you are STP-ready by July. Our advice is don't leave it to the last minute, as set up can be time-consuming for some businesses. Call us in Ballina or Byron Bay on 02 6686 3000.

Let Collins Hume partner with you to achieve greater business and lifestyle success as your trusted advisers. Call us in Ballina or Byron Bay on 02 6686 3000.