Online tax payments in Australia hit a record high
A record 3 million people used Australia's electronic tax payment systems in the 2013-14 tax year. This was revealed in the Australian Tax Office (ATO) annual report, published in November 2014. Since 2012, there has been a 36% decline in paper-based filings.
The e-tax system, designed for complex business taxes, was used by 2.8 million people. And the mytax system for personal taxes was used by 750,000 taxpayers.
Earlier, the Government allowed linking the mytax system to the myGov system, which is run by the Department of Human Services. The myGov system provides citizens with a single platform for all central government related transactions such as Medicare, eHealth records, child support, etc. After the linking, citizens were also able to file their personal taxes through the myGov system. By September 30th, nearly 2.4 million Australians had linked their myGov accounts to the ATO.
In terms of payments to ATO, 20.7 million payments were made electronically as opposed to only 1.4 million manually.
The ATO's mobile app for Apple, Windows and Android devices was downloaded by more than 196,000 users. The ATO mobile app allows lodging of tax returns for those with straightforward taxes. Users can also check the progress of their lodged tax returns. Other features of the mobile app include checking individual income tax rates, calculating fuel tax credit entitlements, updating personal and financial institution details, and many more.
During the year, the ATO received 2.3 million interactive voice recognition (IVR) self-help calls.
The ATO's annual report includes the agency's plans related to communications. For example, for telephone transactions, the ATO intends to use voice biometric technology for proof of identification. Also in mid-2015, the ATO has committed to issuing notices of assessments electronically. The report also points out that the agency aims to make all transactions digital, as a default choice. To support this, the ATO plans to create new systems, which will assist taxpayers in completing their transactions digitally, while ensuring minimum mistakes.
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