After lodging your tax return you may realise that there are some information that you forget to include in your tax return or perhaps ATO amend your Notice of Assessment (NOA) and you dispute the outcome.
For example, if you:
- receive a revised payment summary or another payment summary after you have lodged your return
- realise you made an error when completing a question
- forgot to include:
- capital gain or capital loss
- the value of a reportable fringe benefit
- some income you received, such as interest from a bank account or fuel tax credits (which are part of your business income)
- forgot to claim:
- an allowable deduction
- a tax offset you are entitled to
- have repaid an amount you were overpaid.
Making a voluntary disclosure
When a taxpayer tells ATO about a false or misleading statement they have made to ATO or a change that increases their tax or reduces their credits – and they do so without prompting, persuasion or compulsion on our part – ATO generally refer to it as a ‘voluntary disclosure’.
A voluntary disclosure provides you with the opportunity to bring your tax affairs into order. For example, if you have not disclosed income that you know you should have, you have claimed deductions you know you weren’t entitled to, or you have made other statements in relation to your affairs that you know were false or misleading.
In most cases a voluntary disclosure also opens the way to concessional treatment both for any administrative penalties that apply and any interest charges (administrative penalties are those ATO may impose without taking court action).
The amount of any reduction in penalty amounts and interest charges depends on when you tell ATO about the correction. Generally, the reduction is greater if you make the disclosure before ATO notify you of an examination. You will have to pay any tax you owe and may have to ask ATO for any interest concessions.
Generally ATO will allow you to amend your return 2 years from the date of the NOA for small businesses and individuals, and for other taxpayers is 4 years from the date of the NOA.