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14 July
2019
ATO NEWS AND UPDATES SMALL BUSINESS TOPICS
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Keep good records from the start

Record keeping is crucial for any business and forms part of your tax and super obligations. Good record keeping will also give you a more accurate picture of your business to help you understand how you’re doing and spot potential problems sooner rather than later.

Start keeping records as soon as you start setting up your business. Without proper records you may not be able to claim deductions, concessions or credits that you’re entitled to. You need to keep records of:

  • all income including cash, EFTPOS, credit or debit card, and other payments you receive
  • expenses such as operating expenses, business travel expenses, and payments you make to employees and contractors, including cash wages
  • bank statements.

This also applies if your business is online.

Keeping your records electronically can help you meet your obligations, as many accounting software packages have built‑in checks. If you’re a sole trader you may be able to use the ATO app to keep track of some of your records. Your software provider or tax professional can advise you on the best way to set up your software to suit your business needs.

Remember to keep your business and personal interactions separate. If you use an asset for both business and private use, you need to record when it was used for business, so that you can claim its use correctly. You should also keep a bank account that is just for business income and expenses. This will help when it comes time to report your business tax obligations.

You generally need to keep your tax records for at least five years.

Other languages 

Do you speak another language and still wish to access online information at your business obligations?

Here are some additional resources :

ATO Tax Talk

ATO tv for foreign languages

Glossary of common tax and superannuation terms




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