With an estimated shortfall in superannuation payments of around $2.8 billion, the Australian Government are introducing a two-fold front to tackle the issue of unpaid superannuation. There will be a crackdown on employers who are not complying with superannuation requirements and an increase in mandatory reporting for small employers, who are the main offenders.
Legally, employers are obligated to pay 9.5 percent in superannuation to all employees, including part-time and casual employees, 18 years and over earning more than $450 gross a month.
The proposed changes to penalties mean that employers who do not follow instruction from the ATO to pay superannuation entitlements, along with hefty fines, can ultimately face imprisonment of up to 12 months. Directors of companies are personally liable for missed contribution payments, and if payment orders are defied, will be exposed through the allocation of a “director identification number” to aid the Tax Office in policing those who are non-compliant with fulfilling their superannuation requirements and short-changing their employees.
Additionally, Single Touch Payroll (STP), which is mandatory for employers with over 20 employees from 1 July 2018, is planned to expand and include employers with 19 or less employees from 1 July 2019. Through STP employers must report all payments such as salaries and wages, pay as you go (PAYG) withholding and superannuation information as part of the payroll process every time employees are paid. The upside of this for employers is that STP will streamline these reporting processes and save time in the long run.
Where previously the ATO were informed of unpaid super largely through employee complaints, they are now taking ownership in identifying employers who neglect to pay super contributions and will enforce serious penalties.
Are you paying all of your employees the super they are entitled to? Find out.
If you have 20 plus employees, are you prepared for implementation of STP on 1 July 2018? We can help.
Here’s how to run a quick check of your super obligations, to make sure you’ve got everything sorted.
ATO's Penalties, amendments and objections
The Treasury - Superannuation Guarantee Integrity Package
For all media enquiries please contact Tracy Miller, CMO, Keeping Company 0414 898 452.