Reviewing the ATO App

Breaking news:  The ATO have an app!  How very 2014 of them 🙂  Truth be told, this did exist prior to now but last time I checked it was clunky and didn’t rate a blogworthy mention.  I’m an apple girl so know that it works well with my mobile (only iOS 5.0 and up), ipad and ipod touch.

It’s aimed at individuals and small business taxpayers.  The first thing I did was check the status of my return as an individual.  It did ask for my tax file number and once I got over my initial hesitation of sharing this via my phone, the app quickly told me that my return had been lodged, processed and the notice of assessment issued.  Further to that – it told me the expected processing time at the moment.  The ATO have 30 days but the app reports that they are currently operating at 12 days turn around time for electronic or agent lodgements.  This is a pretty handy feature if you are hanging out for your tax refund and by far my favourite feature.

From a business viewpoint, the app is fairly simplistic.  It directs you to the website for small business for basic questions such as ABN etc.  It also has a downgraded version of the employee/contractor tool from their website.  There is a handy tax withheld calculator to help work out the net amount of wages that need to be paid.

Both options have payment plan estimators and payment plan calculators.  I think this app is great for individuals to track their refunds but it’s not super helpful for business owners.  Ideally, it would be great to have a mini business portal app where you could see your ATO account balances, check on the lodgement of your Business Activity Statements and in the perfect world, receive reminders about due dates for lodgements.

Check it out for yourself!

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