AUSTRALIA | Update from the Inspector-General of Taxation

It has been six months since Mrs. Karen Payne assumed the position as Inspector-General and Taxation Ombudsman of Australia (IGTO). She now used the opportunity to give an update and show what has happened in those last months.

In the first quarter of the 2020 Financial Year (FY20), the IGTO has completed and published its Corporate Plan 2020-2023, its Annual Report 2018-19 and has lodged four submissions. The Q1 report for FY20 will be available on the institution´s website soon and will set out the performance measures as per the Corporate Plan 2020-2023.

Furthermore, Ombudsman Payne has joined the Australian and New Zealand Ombudsman Association (ANZOA), attended several trainings, meetings, discussion groups and conferences including the IPA Women in Practice Conference, the Tax Institute’s 52nd Western Australia State Convention and the Society of Consumer Affairs Professionals (SOCAP) Symposium.

Ombudsman Payne also mentioned that it the institution will commence two new investigations concerning undisputed tax debts in Australia and the ATO systems and processes for dealing with deceased estates.

The IGTO office has initially been set up to conduct systemic investigations or reviews. To date, the institution has completed forty-nine reviews which have covered a broad range of topics including debt collection, alternative dispute resolution, small to medium enterprises, large businesses, refund integrity, data matching and superannuation. Reviews may be originated from a number of different sources – the IGTO’s own initiative, topics identified in complaints data and trends, a direction of the Minister, a request from the Minister, either or both Houses of Parliament or a Parliamentary Committee, the Commissioner of Taxation or the Chair of the Tax Practitioners Board.

The IGTO´s reviews have touched on all areas of good tax administration, including:

  • fair and consistent treatment of taxpayers;
  • being proactive and responsive;
  • providing accountability, transparency and governance;
  • providing certainty and consistency of outcomes;
  • being respectful, professional and collaborative;
  • simplicity and minimising compliance costs, and
  • that tax is paid and collected correctly;

In order to view the full version of the update on the activities of the as Inspector-General and Taxation Ombudsman of Australia click here.


Source: Inspector-General and Taxation Ombudsman, Australia

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