An investigation by the ABC has revealed that a controversial financial crime law that was supposed to reduce fraud and tax avoidance is still causing a headache for regulators.
The ABC understands that the Federal Government is considering changing the law so that the term ‘coupon’ can now be used to describe frauds in which people are given money as a reward, not as a bribe.
The Government has been considering whether the changes should be made permanent.
It is understood the Government has now reached an agreement with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and has agreed to allow for a review of the term.
The ABC’s investigations team has been in contact with people in the tax department who are concerned about the impact the change would have on tax reporting.
Taxpayers are now concerned that some of their information could be exposed in an audit and it could also affect their ability to pay their tax bill.
In the past, tax cheats would often claim that the money was part of a ‘couch potato scheme’ to conceal their income, and would then seek to use the money to pay off debts.
This scheme has been shown to be fraudulent.
It is believed that the current term could also be used as a tool to cover up the extent of the fraud in question.
In recent years, tax experts have argued that it is necessary to change the law to allow people to be held to a higher standard.
However, there is now concern that some tax authorities are trying to use it as a way to stop people reporting tax fraud.
Taxpayers can be told to complete a form called a ‘bargain sheet’ and pay a fee to the tax office.
If they are caught doing this, they are liable to a maximum of a $1,000 fine and six months imprisonment.
Under the scheme, a person can claim an ‘assignment’ as part of the tax return.
This means that they are supposed to pay the money upfront and the tax official will then send the money out as an invoice.
But if the amount paid is too small, or is a large sum, the person may be required to complete the form again and pay the fee again.
The ‘assignments’ are typically made out to people who are in the same company or industry as the individual claiming the ‘assigned amount’.
The scheme can be confusing, because the person who makes the assignment has to complete it as part the tax returns.
So if an accountant in a similar position was trying to claim an amount from someone who was also making an assignment, the auditor could find out the person was also claiming the same amount.
If a person is caught, the accountant will have to take legal action against the person.
But under the current system, the tax authorities can use the ‘baggage sheet’ to stop the person reporting their tax.
If a tax official does not find it difficult to stop a person from reporting their income and claiming a ‘assocation’, they can force them to do so.
Under this system, a taxpayer could be required not to report income or claim a ‘bonus’.
Under this scheme, the government has told the ATO that it will have the power to make the person responsible pay more in tax if the person refuses to pay.
The ATO has also told the ABC that it may require a person to pay more tax to prevent the tax fraud from occurring.
However, the ATG may be able to use this power to prevent people reporting their incomes from being affected by the scheme.
At present, the ABC understands there are around 200,000 people who pay income tax but do not have a tax return, including about 300,000 taxpayers in NSW alone.
Some people are afraid to pay taxes because they fear being caught.
The scheme is being challenged in court by people who have paid their taxes, but the scheme is still in place.
The tax office has also said that it has a duty to act in the best interests of taxpayers, and has said that the ATCO must enforce the law.
The government has promised to investigate the issue.
But critics are worried that the Government may not have the tools it needs to stop tax fraud, or to stop Australians being caught by the law that is in place to prevent it.
Topics:tax-policy,law-crime-and-justice,business-economics-and/or-finance,government-and-(acting-parties-andupcoming-events-other-than-budget-2016),government-organisations,government,government—state-issues,government–news,taxation,australiaContact Emily GreenMore stories from Victoria