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Use a registered agent this tax time

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Use a registered agent this tax time

With tax time now here, Chair of the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB) Dale Boucher urged taxpayers who are using a tax agent to prepare and lodge their tax return to make sure their agent is registered.

“Anyone who uses an agent to prepare and lodge their tax return should ensure the agent is registered with the TPB. This way they can be confident they are getting professional advice. This should help to avoid any mistakes or penalties this tax time,” said Mr Boucher.

“The TPB is an independent national body which regulates tax practitioners. Agents registered with the TPB must comply with a strong professional and ethical framework in providing tax services.

“Taxpayers who use a registered agent may benefit from safe harbour provisions, administered by the Australian Taxation Office. These may relieve them from certain administrative penalties that may be imposed by the ATO. This includes situations where an agent carelessly makes a false or misleading statement or does not lodge a return or statement on time.”

“Remember, only a registered agent can charge a fee to prepare and lodge a tax return.”

To see if an agent is registered, check the TPB’s online register of registered agents. This can be accessed at www.tpb.gov.au. Searches can be conducted under first, last and business names, as well as state, suburb and postcode.

More information:

The TPB was established on 1 March 2010 and replaces the previous State Tax Agents’ Boards in regulating tax agents and now BAS agents nationally.
Further information can be found at www.tpb.gov.au.