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Help available for drought affected areas

The Tax Office can help taxpayers affected by the drought by giving them more time to lodge and pay their income tax and activity statements.

Tax Commissioner Michael D’Ascenzo said he understands the impact the drought is having on many people in rural and regional communities.

“We understand and sympathise with the extreme situations many farmers, businesses and community members may be facing at this time.

“The good news is the Tax Office can help.”

This includes: • allowing more time to lodge activity statements or tax returns without penalty • allowing additional time to pay tax debts without incurring charges • arranging for tax debts to be paid in instalments • remitting penalties or interest that may have been imposed, and • fast tracking refunds.

The Tax Office is also looking at what else it can do to better identify and assist those impacted by the drought.

“We are not in a position to extend lodgment and payment deadlines across the board. However, we recognise that, as the drought has a tight grip on much of Australia, many people affected may not be able to meet their deadlines.

“We will take a sympathetic approach by working one-on-one with individuals, businesses and tax agents to help them out during their time of hardship. However, we do need them to get in contact with us first.”

People affected by the drought can contact the Tax Office for information or assistance with any of their tax matters. They should call as soon as possible on 13 11 42 for individuals and businesses, or 13 72 86 for tax agents.



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