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The ATO is carrying out two new data matching programs with the express objective to locate tax avoiders. They’re using the data matching to identify non-compliance with registration, lodgement, reporting and payment obligations. The focus at the moment is on Motor Vehicle Purchases and Share Transactions.

Motor Vehicles

The ATO’s Motor vehicle data matching program collects details of individuals or business that have purchased or acquired a vehicle costing $10,000 or more in the financial years 2011/12 and 2012/13.

It will acquire information from every State and Territory vehicle registration authority with the expectation to match records relating to approximately 2.8 million individuals.

Share Transactions

The ATO has also announced a share transaction data matching program that will acquire details of share acquisitions and sales from 20 September 1985 to 30 June 2016 from the following registries:

  • Link Market Services Limited;
  • Computershare Limited;
  • Australian Securities Exchange Limited;
  • Boardroom Pty Ltd;
  • Advanced Share Registry Services Pty Ltd; and
  • Security Transfer Registrars Pty Ltd.

The type of data that the ATO will collect includes the name and address of the tax payer, and the data, price and number of shares acquired or sold.

It estimates that more than 95 millions records will be obtained, including the records for approximately 1.2 million individuals. The fact that this program collects information back to 20 September 1985 raised concerns the ATO might amend assessments up to 30 years old! However, the ATO has come out and said that it is only going back to when CGT was first introduced so that it can identify ‘post CGT shares’ and calculate the cost base where shares have recently been sold (for example, if they were bought in 1986 and sold in 2014).

If you have any concerns about non disclosed transactions, please raise them with your usual Hanrick Curran adviser or contact one of Business Advisory team on 07 3218 3900 for expert advice on how to manage your tax obligations to suit your cashflow.