Tax & ATO News Australia

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External Scrutiny Into the ATO

The house of representatives committee on taxation is currently accepting submissions into the external scrutiny of the ATO. This is after recent comments from the Commissioner of Taxation, Chis Jordan that there is too much scrutiny of the ATO. 

Encouragingly, Liberal Senator, Bronwyn Bishop, has resisted this call, saying that given the ATO’s role is to collect money and this has the potential to effect peoples’ lives, parliamentary scrutiny should remain.

More critically, the power that the ATO has to collect money is virtually unlimited, as I have written about before. This power, coupled with a culture that oscillates between rabidly aggressive (at worst) to uncompromising (at best), means that there is always a real risk that an individual ATO officer will go too far and destroy someone’s life in the meantime. This has happened, and I have personally been involved in many such cases, including cases that are deserving of compensation, so badly has the ATO behaved.

The Inspector General of Taxation, Mr Ali Naroozi, does an excellent job of scrutinizing the ATO, with limited resources. Mr Naroozi is a sensible and appropriately skeptical watchdog and needs more scope to review what the ATO does, not less. It would be an absolute disaster if the parliament was convinced that the ATO should be unsupervised.

If parliament agreed with the Commissioner of Taxation in this regard, the result will only be worse for taxpayers, including in particular those many taxpayers who are ultimately showed to have done nothing wrong. There must be consequences if the Commissioner’s actions cause an individual who has not avoided tax at all to lose their business, their house or worse. This has happened, and must not happen again.

Posted in: Tax & ATO News Australia at 22 March 16

ATO staff member backs claims of undue heavy handling by ATO

Not only are taxpayers outraged by the abuse of powers by ATO officers, now its own staff members are speaking out.  See one staff members story here.  She is even suing the ATO for bullying.  What chance does the ordinary taxpayer have when the ATO is prepared to treat one of its own staff members this way?

Call me if you feel you have also been mistreated by officers of the ATO and lets see if there is something we can do together to stop this injustice.

Posted in: Tax & ATO News Australia at 19 April 12

David You need to check out Serene's open letter to the Taxation Commissioner

Additional posts
Comment by Steve lodged 15 May 12


Tax & ATO News Australia

Author: David Hughes

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