ATO visiting businesses to address black economy activity

ATO Visit New Farm, Teneriffe, Newstead, Fortitude Valley

During October 2019, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) will visit businesses in inner-north Brisbane after identifying the area as being “at risk” of becoming a black economy hotspot.

About 400 businesses in Teneriffe, New Farm, Newstead and Fortitude Valley will be inspected by the ATO after public tip-offs and intelligence about suspected operations outside the tax system.  Among the behaviours at the centre of the enquiries are:

  • demanding cash from customers
  • underpaying employees or paying them cash in hand
  • not complying with superannuation obligations
  • under-reporting sales
  • over-stating expenses
  • discrepancies between activity statements and tax returns
  • outstanding tax returns

This latest effort is part of a wider strategy to visit almost 10,000 businesses across Australia this financial year to “protect honest businesses from unfair competition by addressing black economy activities”.  Black economy activity is estimated to cost the Australian economy $50 billion each year.

What to expect from an ATO visit

ATO officers will be talking to businesses about:

  • record keeping and payment facilities, registrations, outstanding lodgements, tax debts, and employer obligations such as super
  • how to fix mistakes
  • the benefits of electronic record keeping and payment methods
  • ATO tools and assistance products available

Depending on what the ATO finds during the visit, they may contact businesses at a later stage to follow up (for example, through a phone call, letter or additional visit), and may undertake a review or an audit.

New Farm information session for businesses and tax agents

Businesses and tax agents in New Farm, Teneriffe, Fortitude Valley and Newstead are invited to attend an ATO information session to find out further information on ATO activity in their area such as:

– why the ATO is visiting your area
– what you can expect during the visit
– how the black economy affects all businesses and Australians
– common mistakes businesses make and how you can avoid them
– how investing in point of sales technology and electronic record keeping will help with accuracy

Tuesday, 8 October 2019

10:00 to 11:00

New Farm Bowls Club
969 Brunswick Street

You can register for the information session here.

Further help:

If you have any questions in relation to an ATO visit, please contact our advisors on (07) 3023 4800 or at

If you require ongoing bookkeeping assistance, consider outsourcing your accounts to our bookkeeping service.

As well as bookkeeping, BAS preparation and reporting, our team are payroll experts and offer expertise in:

  • Payroll set up
  • Payroll calculations and payments
  • Payment summaries and end of year processes
  • Superannuation
  • STP set up and reporting

Visit our Bookkeeping page to find out more about how we help.

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