More than half of the referrals since 1 July 2018 were for suspected under-reporting of income or about suspect activities in the cash economy.
For example, this may include businesses demanding cash from customers or paying their workers cash in hand.
ATO assistant commissioner Peter Holt believes businesses have had enough with competing on price with others that do not pay tax.
“We’re seeing an upwards trend in the volume of referrals about people suspected of participating in the black economy, which suggests that honest businesses have had enough of competitors cheating the system and getting an unfair advantage,” said Mr Holt.
The ATO believes the total number of community referrals will reach 70,000 by the end of the financial year, which is building off last year’s record.
Mr Holt stated the best way to avoid punishment this financial year is to, first and foremost, obey tax law. This can be proven through the provision of up-to-date records and open and honest communication with the ATO.
“We understand the pressures business owners face in running a business and that sometimes they make legitimate mistakes. The best way to stay on top of your tax and super is to ensure your records are kept up to date,” Mr Holt added.
“Good record-keeping will help you complete and lodge your tax returns, manage cash flow, meet your tax obligations and understand how your business is doing,” continued Mr Holt.