The ATO are currently undertaking a voluntary disclosure program, entitled Project Do It. It allows those people with overseas investments or income, that hasn’t been declared before to come clean under much more favourable conditions than would apply under an audit.
The deadline to lodge a disclosure is by 19th December 2014.
By coming clean the benefits include only four years of tax returns being amended, maximum 10% penalty and a guarantee of no criminal proceedings.
You can expect that once the amnesty closes, the ATO will be focussing its audit attention to those who haven’t disclosed. They now have access to a much larger list of banks information from a range of countries, and are much more likely to be able to detect undeclared income than at any time before. We expect them to be aggressive, and use their full prosecution powers on those that do not take advantage of this offer.
If you need assistance with this, please contact your Snelleman Tom advisor to discuss the best ways forward.