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Single Touch Payroll is almost here

If you’re a business with 20 or more employees, then the government’s Single Touch Payroll (STP) scheme is about to come into effect for you.

This scheme, along with a number of other recent reforms, have been designed by the government to safeguard and modernise the Superannuation Guarantee (SG) system.

The aim of STP is to align payroll functions with your business tax and super reporting and obligations.

There’s work to be done

Single Touch Payroll will change the way you report your employee’ payroll information to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

From 1 July 2018, businesses with 20 or more employees will now have to report a range of payments including salaries and wages, Pay As You Go (PAYG) withholding and super information to the ATO when you pay your employees. The headcount for your business is a self-assessment and should be calculated as at 1 April 2018.

For many businesses, you will be able to meet your STP obligations through your existing payroll solution (account software etc.) as long as it is updated to offer STP reporting. If you haven’t already done so, you need to contact your payroll solution provider about how and when your product will be ready. Some payroll software providers have asked for more time to update their products and may have a deferred start date – check with your provider for more details.

If you don’t currently use a payroll solution, you will need to choose one that offers STP reporting and start reporting from 1 July 2018.

What’s not changing

Your payroll cycle doesn’t need to change – you can still pay your employees weekly, fortnightly or monthly. However, when you start reporting through STP, your payroll solution will send your employees’ payroll and super information to the ATO each payday.

Also, your payment due date for PAYG and SG contributions will not change.

Smaller businesses have a little more time

If your business has 19 or fewer employees, the current timeframe for your switch to STP requirements is 1 July 2019. We’ll be in touch closer to the date to confirm timing and any additional requirements – subject to legislation being introduced and passed in parliament.

If you have any questions or concerns about your current contribution processes or obligations, simply contact the Nationwide Super team, your payroll software provider, or your tax/accounting agent, for help.