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Stay on Track: Essential Guide to BAS Due Dates for 2024

Knowing your BAS due dates for 2024 is essential for avoiding penalties and staying ATO-compliant. Whether you lodge monthly, quarterly, or annually, our guide outlines all key dates and provides actionable advice to meet your obligations on time.

 

Key Takeaways

  • The Business Activity Statement (BAS) is pivotal for Australian businesses to report and pay taxes such as GST and PAYG, with strict compliance needed to avoid penalties.

  • BAS lodgement frequency is determined by GST turnover, leading to varied monthly, quarterly, or annual reporting requirements and associated deadlines to remember.

  • Electronic BAS lodgement is encouraged for its benefits, such as faster processing and deadline extensions, while professional tax and BAS agents can offer further assistance to ensure accurate and timely submissions.

 

 

Understanding BAS: An Overview

At the heart of the Australian taxation system lies the Business Activity Statement (BAS). This essential document is used by businesses to report and pay several tax obligations – think of it as a comprehensive report card, capturing everything from:

  • Goods and Services Tax (GST)

  • Pay As You Go Withholding (PAYGW)
  • Pay As You Go Instalment (PAYG)

  • Wine equalisation tax

  • Fuel tax credits

A BAS is not a requirement for all businesses. Taxi or ride-sharing drivers, as well as businesses with an annual GST turnover of $75,000 or more ($150,000 for non-profit organisations), are obliged to lodge a BAS. However, it goes beyond simply ticking a box; complying with the regulations set by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) requires both accuracy and timeliness when lodging your BAS. Fail to do so, and you might face penalties or audits. Ouch.

 

Determining Your Reporting Frequency

Now that you know a BAS is required, how often should it be lodged? Well, that depends on your business’s annual GST turnover. Here are the different reporting frequencies based on your turnover:

  • If your business is earning less than $20 million a year, you’re generally required to report your BAS on a quarterly basis.

  • If you’re a high-roller with a GST turnover of $20 million or more, you’ll need to engage in monthly BAS reporting.

  • Non-profit organizations with an annual GST turnover under $150,000 are eligible for annual BAS reporting.

When you register for GST, you can choose how often you want to report and pay your taxes – either every quarter or once a year. The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) will decide how often you need to report based on the information you provide during your registration or any updates you make later on. So it’s important to keep your business details up-to-date to ensure you’re reporting accurately. 

 

 

Essential BAS Due Dates: Monthly Lodgements

If you fall into the monthly BAS lodgement category, mark your calendars! The due date for monthly lodgements is the 21st day of the month following the end of the taxable period. That means if you’re lodging for the July monthly BAS, you’d need to do so by 21st August. But what happens if the 21st falls on a weekend or public holiday? There’s no need for panic – the next business day will be your deadline to lodge and pay your monthly BAS.

But here’s the catch – failing to comply with the monthly lodgement deadlines could result in a failure to lodge (FTL) on time penalty. To prevent any unforeseen issues, lodging your activity statements online is highly recommended.

 

Essential BAS Due Dates: Quarterly Lodgements

For those on the quarterly BAS lodgement train, your due dates fall on the 28th of October, February, April, and July. But here’s some good news – when lodging online, businesses can enjoy a two-week lodgement and payment extension. And if you’re a tax or BAS agent, you’ll get an even better deal with a four-week lodgement extension for Q1, Q3, and Q4. If your due date falls on a weekend or public holiday, you can lodge and pay on the next business day. Such flexibility aids in adhering to deadlines on time.

Remember, if you’re lodging through a BAS agent, you might get extra time!

 

Essential BAS Due Dates: Annual Lodgements

For very small businesses or non-profit organizations that may not be required to register for GST due to low turnover, you can opt to report your BAS annually. The annual GST return must be lodged and paid by 31 October. This is the general due date for the submission during the annual tax period. If you are not legally obligated to file a tax return, the deadline is extended to 28 February after the end of the tax period. Setting a reminder for these due dates can help prevent missing the deadline.

 

Navigating Electronic and Paper Lodgements

Comparison of electronic and paper lodgement processes

In this digital age, electronic lodgements are becoming the norm. With speedier processing and refunds, the possibility of a two-week extension for quarterly lodgements, and assistance in avoiding mistakes, it’s clear why businesses are making the switch. Transitioning to electronic lodgements may alter your due dates, hence, keeping your contact details updated with the ATO is a crucial step.

Opting for electronic lodgements has several benefits:

  • Your future statements will be provided electronically, saving trees and reducing paper waste.

  • Electronic lodgements ensure you’re paying the correct amount to the tax office.

  • Make sure to use the correct Payment Reference Number (PRN) when making payments!

 

Adjusting Your Reporting and Payment Cycle

As your business’s financial landscape evolves, your GST reporting and payment cycles may change accordingly. You can change your cycle to better suit your needs, such as opting to pay GST monthly, and the new cycle will take immediate effect if made early in the lodging period. If made later, changes will apply from the start of the next quarter or year.

But what if the ATO changes your withholding cycle that you do not agree with? Don’t worry, you can object or request to remain on a lower cycle by contacting the ATO within 14 days of receiving the notification. Remember, the ATO conducts an annual review of businesses’ withholding payments, which could lead to a change in their withholding cycle. Thus, keeping abreast of these changes and making necessary adjustments is vital.

 

Managing BAS Errors and Amendments

Mistakes happen. If you make an error on your BAS, you can correct it on a later BAS if it’s within the allowable time and value limits and not due to recklessness or intentional disregard of GST laws. The time and value limits for correcting debit errors vary according to your current GST turnover. Credit errors, on the other hand, can be corrected on a later BAS if they’re within the four-year credit error time limit, with no value limits.

You’ll need to submit a revised activity statement if your errors exceed the allowable limits or can’t be corrected on a later BAS. These revised statements are treated as amendment applications and can lead to an amended assessment. The good news is, if this is viewed as a voluntary disclosure, you could be eligible for concessional treatment for penalties and interest.

 

Seeking Professional Assistance: Tax Agents and BAS Agents

The complexity of BAS can be daunting, but this is where the expertise of tax and BAS agents prove beneficial. Registered tax and BAS agents can help ensure your BAS lodgements are accurate and timely, reducing the risk of penalties. They also have different annual GST return lodgement due dates for their clients.

While there are generally no lodgement extensions for monthly BAS submissions, even when using a tax or BAS agent, having a team of experienced accountants on your side can ease the burden of BAS lodgements and potentially save you time and money in the long run.

 

Disaster Preparedness and BAS Lodgements

The unpredictable nature of natural disasters can cause significant disruptions to your business operations – BAS lodgements included. If your business is affected by a natural disaster, different due dates may be applied to your BAS lodgements. The ATO supports affected businesses, including lodgement deferrals and remitting penalties or interest charges.

If you are in such a situation, don’t hesitate to contact the ATO. They offer:

  • An emergency support line

  • Specific information such as the ‘Dealing with disasters’ guide to help you get back on your feet.

 

Stress-Free Tax Lodgement with Save My Books

Choosing a BAS agent to handle your BAS lodgement is like having a GPS for the winding roads of tax compliance—minus the robotic voice telling you to turn left at the next available legal obligation. Save My Books steps up as that savvy co-pilot, with a few extra perks up our sleeves.

Why engage a BAS agent?

Extended deadlines mean more breathing room, and who doesn’t love a good extension? Our expertise is your secret weapon against the tax maze, ensuring you don’t accidentally take a wrong turn into the land of penalties. Plus, we take the tax stress off your plate, so you can focus on what you do best—running your business, not drowning in paperwork.

And why Save My Books?

We’re not just about dotting i’s and crossing t’s. We’re about tailored solutions that fit your business like a glove and proactive advice that’s as refreshing as a cold brew on a hot day. With us, you get clarity, strategy, and a dash of humour to make tax lodgements less…taxing. We’re the partner you never knew you needed, turning the chore of BAS lodgement into a breeze. Honestly, do yourself a favour, and check out our bookkeeping packages today (which all include BAS lodgement).

 

Summary

Navigating the world of BAS lodgements and due dates can feel overwhelming, but with some organisation and the right support, it doesn’t have to be daunting. Whether it’s understanding BAS, determining your reporting frequency, or handling BAS errors and amendments, each step brings you closer to mastering your BAS obligations. 

 

FAQs

What are the key BAS due dates for 2024?

Keep your business on track with these key BAS due dates for 2024:

  • Quarter 1 (July – September): 28 October
  • Quarter 2 (October – December): 28 February
  • Quarter 3 (January – March): 28 April
  • Quarter 4 (April – June): 28 July

Remember, if you’re lodging through a BAS agent, you might get extra time!

 

When is my monthly BAS due?

Monthly BAS reports are due on the 21st day of the month following the end of the taxable period. For example, the July monthly BAS is due by 21 August. Mark your calendar to stay ahead!

 

Can I lodge my BAS after the due date?

It’s best to lodge your BAS by the due date to avoid penalties. However, if you foresee a delay, contact the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) or your BAS agent as soon as possible to discuss potential extensions or payment plans.

 

How do I pay my BAS?

You can pay your BAS online, via BPAY, or directly at your bank. Ensure you have your unique BAS payment reference number handy. Early payments are always welcome and can help ease the end-of-period rush.

 

What should I do if I’m struggling with BAS payments?

If you’re finding it tough to make BAS payments, contact the ATO or chat with your tax or BAS Agent – sometimes, they can help by setting up a payment plan with ATO on your behalf. 

Picture of Stacey, Registered BAS Agent and bookkeeper, who provides bookkeeping services to small businesses all over Australia

Stacey Fulton

Boss Lady / BAS Agent

Hey, I’m Stacey, I’m a fan of karate and big beefy muscle cars. But my major, stay-awake-till-3am obsession… is other awesome small biz owners. We ‘get’ each other. I mean, let’s face it. This gig; running a business… it’s empowering and exhilarating. But man, it’s also painful and lonely at times. A kind of pain that our non-small business friends don’t always ‘get’.

In a previous life, I was a corporate gal. Clad in my business suit and sporting a mouthful of technical jargon, I was set to climb the proverbial ladder of the accounting world. And I didn’t do too bad. Then I had kids. Lots of them. Turns out, the corporate world wasn’t a fan of big families and I wasn’t a fan of the corporate world. So I packed up my mundane little cubicle and fell face first Fat Amy style into the world of small business. Save My Books was born.

Don’t go it alone, it’s no fun. And business should be fun. Grab a few squares of chocolate *who am I kidding, grab the block*, and peruse some of the content I’ve put together for you. Or, if you’re time poor like me, save the reading, let’s chat for real over Zoom.

Until then.

Stacey

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March 15, 2024

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Hi, I’m Stacey Fulton, Chief Bean-Counter and BAS Agent at Save My Books. Together with my small (but mighty) team, we help small businesses understand their finances, so they can build sustainable thriving businesses – minus the overwhelm.

Our main goal? To be real people, that have real conversations (minus the jargon), leading to real results. See, our team are all business owners ourselves, so we understand the pressure that small businesses can put on families because we experience it ourselves. Every. Single. Day.

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