The requirement has come in following the passage of laws through Parliament on 12 February. Under STP, employers have to provide details of salaries and wages, PAYG withholding and superannuation information to the ATO from their payroll software each time payments are made.
The ATO said in a statement that since STP reporting was introduced on 1 July 2018 for companies that had 20 or more workers, more than 60,000 employers had successfully used STP to report the details of about 4.3 million employees.
At the time STP was introduced for employers with more than 20 employees, ATO assistant commissioner John Shepherd told iTWire that there were about 72,000 employers who would have to use the STP system
“Single Touch Payroll is an important change that will deliver benefits for both employers and employees by streamlining payroll processes and providing greater transparency around super entitlements,” he said.
“Employers with a payroll solution already in place may be able to start reporting now by updating their software to one that is STP-ready. We encourage employers to talk to their software provider about when their product will be available."
He said the ATO was aware that the 1 July deadline would be difficult for some to meet and "we want to reassure them that the ATO is committed to providing employers with enough time to properly consider their options".
Shepherd said if small employers started using STP between 1 July and 30 September, they would be reporting on time.
"The ATO is providing small employers with this three-month transitional period to work out the best solution for their business. We encourage them to talk to their accountant or tax adviser and ensure they are aware of all their options," he said.
“We will also be generous in granting deferrals to small employers who need more time to start STP reporting, and a number of low-cost options (less than $10 per month) will also become available in the 2018-19 financial year. These options may include simple payroll solutions, portals and online apps.”