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Single Touch Payroll is the latest addition to the payroll reporting landscape. All Australian businesses must comply with these new requirements to avoid penalties. Below, we have put together a comprehensive checklist for employers to ensure that they’re ready to roll-out the new Single Touch Payroll reporting requirements.

STEP 1: Perform an employee headcount by April 1st, 2018 and inform the ATO

Every business within Australia is required to submit a headcount of employees to the Australian Taxation Office on the 1st of April 2018. Employers must provide a headcount – not a full-time equivalent. Read more about how to count your employees correctly here.

From your headcount, you can determine whether your business is a ‘substantial employer’ or not. If you employ more than 20 applicable employees, then you will be classed as a substantial employer. This means you are required by law to implement Single Touch Payroll reporting by July 1st, 2018. If you employ less than 20 applicable employees and therefore aren’t a substantial employer, you have an extra year to make the relevant payroll reporting changes.

STEP 2: Enquire with your current payroll solution, or implement a new one

For businesses who already have a payroll solution in place, it is vital that you ensure that it is being updated to reflect the necessary reporting changes. You should set aside some time to contact your payroll software provider or outsourced payroll officer and discuss not only if the changes are being made, but also when. Remember to keep in mind the roll-out date for your business when you’re discussing with your provider. If you operate software on your end, remember you might have to perform updates to the system.

If you aren’t currently using an outsourced payroll solution or software for your payroll, the Australian Taxation Office recommends implementing one now to cut back on the amount of work required to report correctly. You can find out more about Single Touch Payroll ready solutions here.

STEP 3: Start reporting your payroll with the new requirements

As soon as your payroll solution is compliant, you can begin reporting with the new requirements. Your business will have 12 months to ensure that the ATO is receiving PAYG and super details at each pay event. After this period, each failure to report on time will incur a penalty.

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