Small Business Compliance Obligations
There are many compliance obligations that a small business owner must be aware of. Especially for new business owners, this can seem quite daunting at first!
Not only do you need to be the creative entrepreneur who maintains the vision and energy of your business, you also need to be across all areas of government-related compliance and reporting.
Don’t let the legal obligations of being in business hijack your creative energy! I can assist you in managing your compliance obligations. While there are many areas that will have to be managed by you the owner, there are other areas that I can advise on or manage directly.
Compliance Areas to Consider
- Registrations—Australian Business Number (ABN), Goods and Services Tax (GST), local council registrations or permits relevant to your business, domain name for your website.
- Taxes—GST, payroll tax, land tax, fuel tax credits, fringe benefits tax, pay as you go withholding (PAYGW) for employees, income tax instalments for personal or company tax.
- Australian Taxation Office Records—business owners must keep required records for the statutory period according to the type of business transaction. Tax related records should be kept for five years from lodgement; payroll records for seven years from the date of termination or end of financial year. Records must be kept for every business related transaction.
- Lodgement of ATO forms—individual, partnership and company tax returns are lodged annually; Business Activity Statements are lodged quarterly, monthly or annually; Taxable Payments Annual Report and Fringe Benefits Tax Return are lodged annually; Payment Summary Annual Report for employees is lodged annually; superannuation guarantee is reported monthly or quarterly.
- Laws—there are many laws that apply to business and you will need to get advice on which ones apply to your business. In general, you will likely be subject to workplace health and safety, equal opportunity, anti discrimination, dispute resolution, anti bullying, privacy, consumer protection, codes of practice, price regulation, fair trading and contract law.
- Employment—Fair Work Ombudsman, superannuation guarantee, National Employment Standards, as well as other laws listed above will apply to employers.
- Legal contracts—may be required for partnerships, suppliers, customers, contractors, intellectual property, non-compete agreements and so on.
- Insurances—business, property, cyber protection, public liability, professional liability, income protection, directors’, volunteers’ and workers compensation. You will need to get advice about whether any of these insurances are compulsory for your business industry and type.
- Directors—company directors have legal obligations setting out the duties and responsibilities of being a director.
Do You Need Support for Your Business Compliance Requirements?
I can advise you on your general obligations as an employer and business owner, giving advice about contractors and employees, superannuation payments, GST and BAS related matters, and general cash flow planning.
I can take care of your BAS, superannuation, payment summary and taxable payments report lodgements.
I can advise you generally of your business obligations and give you areas to consider, along with asking you the right questions to ascertain what your obligations might be. I can also direct you to other professionals if you need specific advice, and in particular work collaboratively with your business tax agent.
Once your business is in the flow of operating, I can then analyse your reports and be an objective set of eyes to look at your business systems and performance. One obligation of a business owner is to maintain solvency—understanding cash flow and budgets is key to long-term success.
Compliance obligations—don’t let them get you down!