SUPERANNUATION GUARANTEE AMNESTY – DO YOU HAVE UNPAID SUPER FOR EMPLOYEES?

The Government has announced an amnesty for employers that have fallen behind with superannuation guarantee (SG) payments to "self-correct". The amnesty applies to employers that have underpaid or not paid SG for any period from 1 July 1992 up to 31 March 2018. Under the amnesty, the penalties that normally apply to late payments are waived as is the administration fee, and the SG payment is deductible - normally employers lose the ability to deduct superannuation payments where SG is late.

The time period for taking advantage of the amnesty is due to end on 23 May 2019 and it will be important to identify any potential problem areas as soon as possible so that appropriate action can be taken.

If your business has engaged any contractors during the period covered by the amnesty, then the arrangements will need to be reviewed as it is common for workers to be classified as employees under the SG provisions even if the parties have agreed that the worker should be treated as a contractor. You cannot contract out of SG obligations.

If you have not undertaken a payroll audit or an audit of rates paid to employees, you should do this within the next 12 months.

The amnesty applies to voluntary disclosures. The amnesty does not apply to amounts that have already been identified as owing or where the employer is subject to an ATO audit.