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From a soft hug to a tight squeeze: ATO tightens its grip on private and high wealth groups

Businessman shaking hands together in corridor
In an interview with Accountants Daily, Tax partners Jonathan Ortner and Shaun Cartoon spoke about the ATO’s Top 500 and Next 5,000 Programs and explained why a soft hug can quickly turn into a tight squeeze.
Jonathan explains that the ATO’s interest in the Top 500 groups comes as a result of recent tax gap reports, which highlighted a 7.7 per cent tax gap in the sector worth $772 million. As of July last year, the ATO had been in touch with 460 Top 500 groups, and has since initiated engagements with a further 80.

As for the Next 5,000 program, Jonathan said taxpayers might not even be aware they fall under the program’s net and could remain in the dark until they’re approached by the ATO.

Shaun tells Accountants Daily that a good number of groups that fall into the Next 5000 program may never have considered a formal tax risk governance framework for their private group, and only ever engaged with the ATO on targeted issues.

To read the full article, click here

If you require more information about the ATO’s private wealth compliance programs, you can visit our Tax Disputes Portal here.

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