The ATO has released a lengthy document – “What attracts our attention” – explaining the behaviours, characteristics and tax issues that might bring privately owned wealthy groups to the ATO’s attention for review or audit.
According to the ATO, such characteristics and behaviours attracting its attention include:
– tax or economic performance is not comparable to similar businesses;
– low transparency of taxpayer’s tax affairs;
– large, one-off or unusual transactions, including transfer or shifting of wealth;
– a history of aggressive tax planning;
– tax outcomes inconsistent with the intent of tax law;
– choosing not to comply or regularly taking controversial interpretations of the law;
– lifestyle not supported by after-tax income;
– treating private assets as business assets;
– accessing business assets for tax-free private use; and
– poor governance and risk-management systems.