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Government Proposes 12-month SG Amnesty


A one-off, 12-month amnesty period for historical underpayment of the superannuation guarantee (SG) has been announced by the government (click here for media release), forewarning tougher penalties once the Single Touch Payroll (STP) regime kicks in fully next year.


The amnesty offer applies for the 12 months from yesterday (24 May) and according to Minister for Revenue and Financial Services Kelly O’Dwyer, incentivises employers to “do the right thing”.


The measure has been strategically announced one year out from the full implementation of STP across all business sizes, before the ATO enforces a tougher penalty regime for SG non-compliance.


STP will roll out for employers with 20 or more employees on 1 July 2018, while employers with 19 or less employees will have to start reporting on 1 July 2019.


Under STP, the ATO are going to have real-time data and know who is behind in payments and the penalty is enormous for not paying on time so it’s really an olive branch and the calm before the potential storm if businesses don’t do something about it and get their SG payments in order.


Employers who have historical underpaid super will have to pay out the owed super in full, including the higher rate of nominal interest, but will sidestep the penalties for late payment.


According to Ms O’Dwyer, the ATO will continue its enforcement activity against employers who do not own up voluntarily to their historical obligations during the 12-month amnesty period.


Contact us if you need any further information on this announcement.

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