MONEY MONEY MONEY: It's time to start sorting out those dockets and getting organised for tax time.
MONEY MONEY MONEY: It's time to start sorting out those dockets and getting organised for tax time. Candyce Braithwaite

No time like the present for doing tax

WITH a suite of online tools that make lodging easier than ever before and the majority of pre-fill information now available, Tax Commissioner Chris Jordan said now is an ideal time to do your tax.

"We have developed a suite of online services that have made it easier than ever before to get your tax return done, and now we have most pre-fill records such as wages, bank interest and dividends ready for taxpayers and agents to use. This means most of the work is done for you,” Mr Jordan said.

"Your information can be accessed via myTax or can be uploaded by your agent. All you need to do is review the pre-filled information and add any deductions, it's that easy.

"We're finding that people who lodge their own return through myTax are finished in less than half an hour. It's one of the reasons why we have a 93 per cent satisfaction rate with users.”

Mr Jordan said many taxpayers were taking advantage of the tools the ATO had released which make tax time easier and faster than ever before.

"Our ATO app makes it easy for individual taxpayers to manage their tax and super affairs on the go. One of the best features of the app is our myDeductions tool which allows you to take a photo of receipts using your smartphone, and store them in one convenient spot,” Mr Jordan said.

"You can then share your records directly with your agent or upload your deductions directly to your tax return. If you haven't used it yet, download the ATO app today and start snapping today. You'll be able to use the data next year to make sure you don't miss out on any deductions due to faded or lost receipts.”

Mr Jordan said 2017 was shaping up to be a record-breaking year for lodgment numbers.

"We've received almost five million returns already this year, which is an increase of 360,000 on this time last year,” Mr Jordan said.

"Over three million of these lodgments have come through tax agents, an increase of two per cent from 2016. Almost two million Australians have completed their returns themselves using myTax, up 13 per cent from last year.

"So whether you lodge your own return or use an agent, the numbers show that it's easier and faster than ever before to get your tax done - which also means getting your refund back even faster.”

The ATO has already issued 3.6 million refunds worth a total of almost $8.5 billion. More than 96 per cent received their refunds within 12 days.

Taxpayers can lodge online using myTax or by going to a registered tax agent. You can check your agent is registered through the Tax Practitioner's Board website. If you are using an agent for the first time or using a different tax agent to last year, you need to contact them before 31 October 2017 to ensure you are on their lodgment program.



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