TPAR aimed at leveling the playing field for couriers, freight services

A Taxable payments annual report (TPAR) may be required of logisitcs and transport businesses that engage contractors to provide courier or road freight services.

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has launched a campaign to help level the playing field for companies that provide these services as last mile deliveries and ecommerce surges in recent months in response to COVID-19.

ATO Assistant Commissioner Peter Holt said the ATO was working to prevent businesses from gaining an unfair advantage over others who are doing the right thing.

“It is now more important than ever we create a fair and equal system for businesses in the courier and road freight sector and one way is through the Taxable payments reporting system (TPRS),” he said in a statement.

“Many businesses are offering new or expanded services – including courier and delivery services in response to COVID-19 restrictions. The information reported on the TPAR is used to make sure that contractors are reporting their correct income and paying the right amount of tax, so that honest businesses don’t lose out to those under-declaring or not declaring income,” Holt said.

In 2018 the Taxable payments reporting system (TPRS) expanded to include businesses that pay contractors to provide courier services on their behalf. It has since further expanded to include businesses that pay contractors to provide road freight services on their behalf.

This would include payments made to couriers which should be lodged in a TPAR.

It also applies even if courier or road freight services are a customary part of the operations.

According to the ATO, this information is used to check that contractors are reporting all their income as part of a fair and transparent tax system.

Recording all payments made to contractors throughout the year will help businesses get it right and make it easier when the time comes to check should a TPAR need to be lodged.

The information can be found on the invoices received from contractors and is the same information made to claim income tax deductions for an annual tax return and GST credits for BAS statements.

The TPAR is due by 28 August each year.

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