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Thursday, 2 December 2004
Page: 156


Senator Brown asked the Minister representing the Treasurer, upon notice, on 18 November 2004:

With reference to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and the non-payment of superannuation contributions by small businesses:

(1) Why are complainants not routinely issued with receipts or reference numbers to help them keep track of the details of their complaints.

(2) Would such records assist with any disputes with the ATO in relation to complaints that have not been followed up properly.


Senator Coonan (Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts) —As the question deals with matters administered by the Australian Taxation Office, I have asked the Commissioner of Taxation for advice. The advice to the honourable senator's question is as follows:

(1) Upon receipt of complaints, the ATO issues a unique reference number to the employee that will assist them with any follow up correspondence or calls to the ATO regarding their complaint.

(2) The complainant is able to use this unique reference number at any stage of the investigation to enquire about the progress of the audit. It should be noted that privacy provisions preclude the ATO from divulging specific details of any action being taken against the employer to an employee.