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31 August 2018

Ombudsman welcomes Labor commitment for Second Commissioner in ATO

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, Kate Carnell, today welcomed the commitment by Labor to legislate to establish a Second Commissioner and Appeals Group within the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), to give small businesses a fair appeals process.

 “In a report to Treasury in April, we suggested the ATO create a fully independent internal review process to deliver timely and low cost dispute resolution,” Ms Carnell said. “We also suggested an independent external review process.

 “A Second Commissioner and Appeals Group that have their own practices and approaches, completely separate to the current audit officer processes, would ensure small business disputes are fair and transparent.

 “Although the ATO is currently piloting an Independent Review facility, this would be a further step in the right direction.

 “We work closely with the ATO’s small business area, to ensure small businesses are able to meet their obligations and are treated equitably.

 “Small business expertise would be an essential requirement in the setting up this new group and Second Commissioner, and we welcome the opportunity to provide advice on this.”