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BAS services

BAS services

BAS service is defined in the Tax Agent Services Act 2009 (TASA) as:

  • ascertaining or advising about the liabilities, obligations or entitlements of a client under a BAS provision; or
  • representing a client in their dealings with the Commissioner of Taxation in relation to a BAS provision; and
  • where it is reasonable to expect a client will rely on the service to satisfy liabilities or obligations or to claim entitlements under a BAS provision.


BAS provision

Declaring certain services as BAS services

Examples of BAS services

Conveyancers

Labour hire firms and service trusts

Registering to provide BAS services


BAS provision

The term ‘BAS provision’ is defined in Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 as:

  • Part VII (collection and recovery only) of the Fringe Benefits Tax Assessment Act 1986
  • the indirect tax laws, including
    • the goods and services tax (GST) law
    • the wine tax law
    • the luxury car tax law
    • the fuel tax law, and
  • Parts 2-5 and 2-10 in schedule 1 of the Tax Administration Act 1953, which are about the pay as you go (PAYG) system.

The TASA also provides that the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB) may, by legislative instrument, specify that another service is a BAS service.

There are significant civil penalties for anyone providing BAS services for a fee or reward, or advertising BAS services, while unregistered.

For detailed information about the meaning of BAS service, refer to section 90-10 of the TASA.

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Declaring certain services as BAS services

We've registered the following legislative instruments that extend the scope of services that registered BAS agents can provide:

Superannuation guarantee

The legislative instrument — Tax Agent Services (Specified BAS Services No. 2) Instrument 2020 — allows BAS agents to provide the following additional services from 6 November 2020:

  • services under the Superannuation Guarantee (Administration) Act 1992 to the extent that they relate to a payroll function or payments to contractors
  • determining and reporting the SG shortfall amount and any associated administrative fees
  • dealing with superannuation payments made through a clearing house
  • completing and lodging the Taxable payments annual report to the ATO, on behalf of a client
  • sending a tax file number declaration to the ATO, on behalf of a client
  • applying to the Register for an Australian Business Number (ABN),on behalf of a client.

Types of services relating to the SGC

  • Advising about an SGC liability, including calculating SGC and preparing the SGC statement
  • Advising about the offsetting of late payments of superannuation contributions against the SGC, including completing the late payment offset election section of the SGC statement
  • Representing a client in their dealings with the ATO relating to the SGC, including:
    • lodging of SGC statements
    • accessing the SG and SGC accounts in online services for BAS agents
    • being an authorised contact for the SG and SGC account
    • being an authorised contact for payment arrangements and requesting penalty remissions relating to the SGC account
    • being an authorised contact for any audit or review activity undertaken by the ATO relating to the SGC.

Refer to the explanatory statement of this legislative instrument for further information.

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COVID-19 stimulus measures

From 16 April 2020, BAS agents can legally provide advice and assist eligible businesses to claim their entitlements under the JobKeeper Payment and Cashflow support for business initiatives.

The legislative instrument, Tax Agent Services (Specified BAS Services No.1) Instrument 2020, declares the following services to be a BAS service:

  1. a service under the Boosting Cash Flow for Employers (Coronavirus Economic Response Package) Act 2020
  2. a service under the Coronavirus Economic Response Package (Payments and Benefits) Act 2020
  3. a service under any rules that the Treasurer may, by legislative instrument, make pursuant to section 20 of the Coronavirus Economic Response Package (Payments and Benefits) Act 2020
  4. a service under any legislative instrument made under subsections(b) and (c).

This Legislative Instrument also allows registered BAS agents to legally provide services under the JobKeeper Payment extension rules and the JobMaker Hiring Credit rules.

Refer to the explanatory statement of this instrument for further information.

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Examples of BAS services

This table includes a non-exhaustive list of the types of services that may and may not constitute a BAS service under the TASA.

Service BAS service Not a BAS service
Applying to the Registrar for an ABN on behalf of a client. X  
Installing computer accounting software without determining default GST and other codes tailored to the client.   X
Coding transactions, tax invoices and transferring data onto a computer program for clients through processes that require the interpretation or application of a BAS provision. X  
Coding transactions, tax invoices and transferring data onto a computer program for clients through processes that do not require the interpretation or application of a BAS provision.   X
Confirming figures to be included on a client’s activity statement. X  
Completing activity statements on behalf of an entity or instructing the entity which figures to include. X  
General training in relation to the use of computerised accounting software not related to client's particular circumstances.   X

Preparing bank reconciliations.

  X
Entering data without involvement in or calculation of figures to be included on a client's activity statement.   X
Providing advice about or confirming the withholding tax obligations for the employees of a client. X  
Services declared to be a BAS service by way of a legislative instrument issued by the TPB. X  
Preparing and providing an income statement that may include reportable fringe benefits amounts and the reportable employer superannuation contributions. X  
Registering or providing advice on registration for GST or PAYG withholding. X  
Services under the Superannuation Guarantee (Administration) Act 1992 to the extent that they relate to a payroll function or payments to contractors. X  
Advising about an SGC liability, including calculating the liability and preparing the SGC statement X  
Advising about the offsetting of late payments of superannuation contributions against the SGC X  
Completing the late payment offset election section of an SGC statement X  
Representing a client in their dealings with the ATO relating to the SGC – lodging SGC statements, being an authorised contact relating to SG and SGC, and accessing these accounts in the ATO’s online services for BAS agents X  
Being an authorised contact with the ATO for payment arrangements relating to SGC account X  
Being an authorised contact with the ATO for requesting penalty remissions relating to SGC X  
Being an authorised contact for any audit or review activity undertaken by the ATO relating to SGC X  
Advising about claiming of an allowable tax deduction for superannuation contribution   X
Advising about superannuation contribution caps and the effect of exceeding those caps   X
Advising on salary sacrificing arrangements and salary packaging   X
Advising about fringe benefits tax laws   X
Advising about, preparing and/or lodging income tax returns   X
Determining and reporting the superannuation guarantee shortfall and associated administrative fees. X  
Dealing with superannuation payments made through a clearing house. X  
Completing and lodging the Taxable payments annual report to the ATO on behalf of a client. X  
Sending a TFN declaration to the Commissioner on behalf of a client. X  

Transmitting data to the Commissioner through single touch payroll (STP) enabled software, where the data transmission doesnotrequire the interpretation or application of a BAS provision.

  X
Providing a payroll service which involves interpreting and applying a BAS provision, including reporting of employee payroll information through the use of STP enabled software. X  
Undertaking a payroll compliance review, providing an assessment and/or opinion whether the client is compliant with one or more BAS provisions. X  
Determining eligibility, providing advice and assisting eligible clients to elect to participate in the JobKeeper Payments scheme. X  
Determining eligibility, providing advice and assisting eligible clients in relation to their Cashflow boost entitlements. X  
Determining eligibility, providing advice and assisting eligible clients to claim the JobMaker Hiring Credit. X  

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Conveyancers

Conveyancers may need to register with the TPB to assist their clients with GST on certain property transactions.

For further information refer to Conveyancers and GST withholding for certain taxable supplies of property

 

Labour hire firms and service trusts

Where a service trust or labour hire entity provides services to a client and the client can reasonably be expected to rely upon the service to satisfy their liabilities or obligations or claim entitlements under a BAS provision, the service trust or labour hire entity may be providing a BAS service and be required to register as a BAS agent.

Generally, a service trust or labour hire entity is unlikely to be required to register where there is another registered entity (including a registered individual) which is providing the BAS service and it is that entity which is directing the services being performed by the personnel provided by the service trust or labour hire entity.

If you operate a labour hire/on-hire firm and are unsure if you are required to be registered, please refer TPB information sheet Labour hire/on-hire firms TPB(I) 26/2016

If you operate a service trust and are unsure if you are required to be registered, contact us

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Registering to provide BAS services

You can apply for BAS agent registration as:


Last modified: 8 December 2020