No RST for the Wicked The End of Paper from the ATO - 14th January 2022

No RST for the Wicked The End of Paper from the ATO


The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) announced in March 2020 that they were going to cease sending paper activity statements. This applies to forms R, S and T. These forms are:


R (quarterly Pay As You Go PAYG instalment notice),

S (quarterly Goods and Service Tax GST instalment notice), and

T (quarterly Goods and Service Tax GST and PAYG instalment notice).


As you can imagine, there was an instant backlash from the Accounting and Tax community as many taxpayers relied on those papers forms to pay their instalments.

Some of the Accounting Bodies and the ATO then developed an "interim solution" that to date still does not work very well. Here is how it is intended to work:


1. For clients with their preference set to Digital, paper activity statements will stop.

2. If you or we lodge a quarterly activity statement electronically and you lodge your own monthly activity statement by paper, paper activity statements will stop.

3. If you or we lodge a one-off electronic revision of a quarterly activity statement and you lodge your own activity statement by paper, paper activity statements will stop.

4. If you or we lodge or vary an instalment amount online for a client and you normally receive paper instalment notices, paper instalment notices will stop.

5. If you have a MyGov account and link it to the ATO, paper activity statements will stop.


You can see a pattern developing here. If you or we deal with the ATO on your behalf electronically or online, the ATO will stop sending paper activity statements or paper instalment notices.  It is incredibly frustrating to oversee a system that moves like quicksand. The irony of course is the ATO sends out the non-payment reminders, wait for it, BY PAPER!  We had a lot of clients contact us to say they received the non-payment reminder but not the original quarterly activity statement. The five scenarios above are the reasons why.


The good news is that if we attach your email address to the ATO preferences and your preferences are set to Digital, the ATO will send you an emailed reminder 21 days before the due date.  The ATO also recognise that electronic communications is not for everyone, so they will make exceptions, in limited circumstances and revert you to paper. But you need to call them directly to make this happen.


We are sending you this newsletter because we have just clicked over a new quarter (and New Year obviously). The December 2021 quarterly activity statements will be issued soon.  If you usually receive a quarterly activity statement by paper and have not received your December 2021 statement by 31 January 2022, can you please contact our office and we will check your ATO preferences.


Also, for those of you who have MyGov and have it linked to the ATO, make sure your notifications in MyGov are switched on. They too send an email or a text to alert you that you have mail in your MyGov account.


Here is an ATO link with more information - ATO link here. Once again we thank you for your patience in this rapidly changing world of ours and as always, if you have any questions or concerns please contact our office. 

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