Bookkeeping

How to lodge a TPAR non-lodgement advice form (NIL TPAR)

If you normally lodge a Taxable Payments Annual Report (TPAR) but have decided that this year, you don’t have anything to report, you can lodge a “Non-lodgement Advice” form (NIL TPAR) with the ATO. You can do this online via ATO Online Services.

If you are a sole trader or individual taxpayer you can access Online Services through your myGov account. If you are another structure, such as a company, you can access Online Services via Online Services for Business.

Submitting a TPAR non-lodgement advice form,

  • allows you to notify multiple years on the same form
  • allows you to advise when you do not need to lodge in the future
  • allows you to give a reason for not lodging
  • validates information entered
  • provides a reference number for confirmation
  • appears in the lodgment history tab.

If you are not sure if you need to lodge a TPAR or not, go to this ATO webpage which will help you work this out.

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Travel Diaries

Finally, after the dark days of COVID-19 and endless lockdowns, etc., we are now seeing glimpses of opportunities to travel again (THANK GOD!). For business owners, this means work-related travel is once more on the table. Given it’s been a while between trips, I thought it might be useful to provide a refresher on travel diaries and when they are required.


When do I need to keep a travel diary and what do I record?

When you travel for work or your business, you are sometimes required to keep a travel diary as per the ATO to assist in working out which part of your travel is tax-deductible. I have outlined the circumstances below which would dictate when you should keep such a diary:

You should include the following in the diary:

  • Your location
  • The nature of the activity e.g. a conference
  • The day/s and time/s (start and end times)
  • The length of the activity e.g. 2 days
  • When you stopped for meals
  • Travel movements and activities before the activities end, or as soon as possible afterwards
  • The entries must be in English

What can I use as my travel diary?

The ATO has said that you can use a diary or journal of your choice for the purposes of keeping a travel diary. You can also use your digital calendar as well, making sure to attach receipts/invoices to each entry.

What other records do I need to keep?

It goes without saying, that you should keep all receipts and invoices related to your travel as well as the travel diary. This will make both the bookkeeper’s and tax agent’s jobs much easier 🙂 and make the ATO very happy!


Lastly, you need to remember that if you were required to keep a travel diary and you didn’t, then you may not be able to claim the relevant travel expenses on your tax return! Speak to your tax agent for further advice if this affects you. 

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Temporary Full Expensing Measure

If you’ve been thinking of buying new equipment or a new vehicle for the business, now might be the time to do it. The instant asset write-off cost limit of $150K has been replaced by a new “temporary full expensing” measure (TFE) which effectively means you can fully deduct the cost of most assets, no matter how much they cost. This measure is in place to provide immediate tax relief and assist cash flow.

Who & what is eligible?

  • Businesses with an aggregated turnover of less than $5 billion.
  • Assets purchased and/or installed between 7:30 pm on 6 October and 30 June 2023.
  • Commercial vehicles, vans, buses and motorcycles.

Who/what is not eligible?

Fancy a new car?
  • Cars costing more than $59,136 (they can only be depreciated up to this amount).
  • Assets allocated to a low-value pool or a software development pool.
  • Certain primary production assets (water facilities, fencing, horticultural plants or fodder storage assets), unless you are a small business entity that chooses to apply the simplified depreciation rules to these assets.
  • Buildings and other capital works.
  • Assets that will never be located in Australia, or will not be used principally in Australia for the principal purpose of carrying on a business.
  • If your entity has an aggregated turnover of $50 million or more, you cannot TFE the cost of assets that are secondhand or that you purchased or installed prior to 7:30 pm on 6th October 2020.

While TFE sounds good on paper, it is imperative that you get advice from your tax agent or accountant about TFE and how it may impact your tax situation, especially if it results in creating a loss. As we are BAS Agents, we cannot advise you about this so please do speak to your tax advisor if you think you would like to use the TFE measure for your business.

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Meal entertainment: when does GST apply?

The area of “meal entertainment” is an absolute minefield for accounting professionals like us. It can be very difficult to know when an expense incurred by a client relating to food or drink should be recorded with GST or not. Luckily there is a resource out there via the ATO that brings some clarity to the situation.

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Netflix Tax – A Bookkeeper’s View (from the Trenches)

My last blog was all about the new “Netflix Tax” and was really just an informational blog outlining what, how and when etc. In this blog, I want to look at the tax from a bookkeeper’s perspective and provide a real “from the trenches” viewpoint. All is not what it seems with the Netflix Tax!

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Registered for GST? What you need to know about the Netflix Tax.

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For some time now, larger IT companies have been charging GST to their Australian consumers. Examples of these are Google, Adobe and Linkedin. They are doing this because of a new law that began formally on 1 July 2017. This new law is known colloquially as the “Netflix Tax”, requires all international companies with an annual GST turnover of $75K or more and selling services and digital products to Australian consumers, to enter the Australian GST system. While most of us aren’t too impressed with the 10% price hike on these products, GST registered business owners understand that they can claim the GST back in their BAS which alleviates the sting a little……or so they thought! Sadly, this is not the case with this new law. The “Netflix Tax” tells us something different and if you’re not paying attention, you or your BAS Agent are likely to get things wrong when processing your next BAS. Read on.

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On-charging merchant surcharges to your clients – new rules!

If you use your bank’s credit and debit card merchant facilities to accept payment from your clients and you on-charge the bank’s fees for use of these facilities, you need to take note of this blog!

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Which documents do I have to provide to e-BAS Accounts?

At it’s most basic, bookkeeping involves receiving data in the form of invoices etc. and entering this data into an accounting system. So, if you are one of our clients, before we can start doing your accounts, we will send you a request for a list of documents. The type of document we request from you will depend on the scope of work that we agreed to do for you within your engagement letter.

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How do I share my documents with e-BAS Accounts?

There are several tools you can use that will allow you to share your documents with us. Your location (and ours) isn’t a problem as most tools will allow you to share your data remotely. Here is a list of tools you can use:

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Why do I have to sign an engagement letter?

It is customary across many professional industries to use engagement letters or client agreements when on-boarding a new client. They are used by most accounting professionals and are considered best practice. An engagement letter protects both the consultant and the client in the event anything should go awry during the engagement. We certainly use engagement letters in our practice and if you are a new client you will be asked to sign one. The engagement letter is step three in our on-boarding procedure (see step one here and step two here). This blog will cover why you need to sign one and details what we include in our letters.

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