ATO Introduces Self-Review Reporting Requirements for Non-Profit Organisations

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has recently unveiled new self-review reporting requirements specifically designed for non-profit organisations (NFPs). These guidelines aim to promote transparency and accountability within the NFP sector and ensure compliance with relevant tax laws. Below we break down the key points of the ATO’s announcement and explain how NFPs can fulfil their reporting obligations.

Under the new framework, NFPs are expected to conduct self-reviews to assess their compliance with tax regulations and provide a written report outlining the results of their review. The ATO acknowledges that NFPs operate with limited resources and may face unique challenges in meeting their obligations. Therefore, the self-review process is intended to be a practical and manageable task for organisations of all sizes.

The self-review reporting requirements cover a range of key areas, including:

  1. Governance and structure: NFPs are encouraged to review their governance arrangements, ensuring they have appropriate structures and processes in place to comply with tax laws. This involves examining board composition, decision-making procedures, and financial management practices.
  2. Tax concessions and exemptions: Organisations should assess their eligibility for tax concessions and exemptions, such as deductible gift recipient (DGR) status or goods and services tax (GST) exemptions. It is crucial to ensure that the NFP’s activities align with the requirements for these benefits.
  3. Deductible gift recipients (DGRs): NFPs registered as DGRs should review their operations to verify that they are still eligible for this status. This includes evaluating the activities and funds used to support charitable purposes, as well as any potential risks or conflicts of interest.
  4. FBT (Fringe Benefits Tax) obligations: If an NFP provides fringe benefits to its employees or associates, it must comply with FBT obligations. Self-reviewing in this area involves assessing employee benefits, including salary packaging and the provision of non-cash benefits.
  5. Reporting and record-keeping: NFPs must maintain accurate records of their financial transactions and activities. The self-review process involves ensuring that proper record-keeping procedures are in place and that financial statements and annual returns are prepared and lodged correctly.

To facilitate the self-review process, the ATO has provided comprehensive guidance on their website, including a Self-Review Questionnaire that covers the areas mentioned above. NFPs are encouraged to utilise this resource to assist them in conducting their reviews effectively.

It is important to note that the self-review reporting requirements do not replace the need for NFPs to engage with external auditors or seek professional advice where necessary. External assistance can provide valuable insights and ensure compliance with broader legal and financial obligations.

The ATO aims to work collaboratively with NFPs and support them in meeting their reporting obligations. However, it is also prepared to take appropriate action if non-compliance is identified, including penalties and loss of tax concessions or exemptions.

The ATO’s introduction of self-review reporting requirements for NFPs aims to enhance transparency, accountability, and compliance within the sector. By conducting self-reviews and submitting written reports on their compliance status, NFPs can demonstrate their commitment to fulfilling their tax obligations and maintaining public trust. Organisations should carefully review the guidelines provided by the ATO and seek professional advice when needed to ensure they meet their reporting requirements effectively.

Our Accru advisors are here to support your business. If you need any professional advice or have further questions you can always get in touch –  we’re here to help.

About the Author
Ahmad Samadi , Accru Melbourne
Ahmad plays a key role in the management and development of our audit division and our firm as a Director. Ahmad’s key strengths lie within external audits, data analytics and internal audits.
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