Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand has received a large amount of feedback from our members regarding the announcement that Inland Revenue will no longer accept cheques from 1 March 2020. There have been three clear themes from this feedback:
- ensuring 'vulnerable' taxpayers such as the elderly, those in remote/rural areas and those without stable internet access can continue to meet their tax obligations,
- ensuring there are affordable and practical alternatives available to taxpayers who require co-signatories, for example, trusts, and
- detailing what conditions must be met in order to qualify for an exception to continue to pay via cheque and, clarifying the process for applying for this exception.
While we acknowledge that cheque usage is declining, and the systems required to support them are becoming obsolete, there remains a group of taxpayers who will have to experience a 'transition period'.
In our submission we identify practical issues and clarifications to help taxpayers understand what payment options will be available to them after 1 March 2020.