At any given time there are 3,8 Million small business taxpayers in the tax system. So a recent media statement from the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, Kate Carnell, brings good news to these Australian entrepreneurs. The Prime Minister announced a funding line for a Small Business Concierge Service in her office. This will function as a direct line of inquiry to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). And will specifically furnish the needs of small business ATO disputes.

How will it work?

The intention going forward is that for $500, small business owners can lodge an appeal directly through this service. Fast-tracking them to a response. Carnell’s office will be able to offer bespoke support and advice regarding the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) process, prior to making an application. Further to this, a dedicated Small Business Taxation Division within the AAT – independent of the ATO – will case manage appeals to ensure small businesses get a fair hearing.

Why now?

Small business is a critical part of the Australian economy. When an ATO dispute is lodged, this can present a certain challenge to this growth.  The process can take an extended period of time to resolve. Often time that SMEs don’t have. A common (and disturbing) issue is that in many cases, small business owners have their houses on the line. This makes fast-tracking the dispute all the more crucial.

If these disputes get stuck in court, it can have a devastating knock-on effect financially.  Often they run out of money. And it is this type of scenario that the Ombudsman is trying to avoid. Says Carnell, “Our assistance team is well-placed to manage small and family business tax disputes, having already triaged hundreds of similar cases for almost three years. Ours and AAT’s specialized support will assist small businesses to resolve ATO disputes in a timely and cost-effective manner.”

What else can SMEs with small business ATO disputes do?

When small business ATO disputes are already in the system, cash flow can be negatively affected. If this is the case, a Merchant Cash Advance can help. This is a unique PAY-AS-YOU-TRADE system. Ideal for business owners who have a monthly average turnover of $5,000 or more, and have been operating for more than 6 months. In contrast to the ATO process, applying for a Cash Advance is quick and easy. And approval can happen in less than 48 hours.

Says Jaco Gunter, COO of Beyond Merchant Capital, “We understand how much small business owners have on their plate. We have streamlined the process. This will allow entrepreneurs time to focus on what they do best- run their business.” If a business is stuck in an ATO dispute, a quick cash injection can be the factor which keeps the doors open. The Pay-As-You-Trade system will enable repayments to work in line with turn-over. So the operator is unlikely to feel the pinch of the repayments.

SMEs finally get the support they need

Small businesses are crucial to the development of the Australian economy. They account for almost half of the employment in the private non-financial sector and over a third of production. Government and private support are crucial. And SMEs should be taking advantage of what’s out there. For more information on how to get a Merchant Cash Advance for your SME, speak with a BMC Lending Specialist today.

Speak with a lending specialist today about funding the growth of your business.

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