SMSF annual returns: late lodgment may impact fund status

The ATO has reminded trustees of self-managed super funds (SMSFs) that the annual return due date for some funds is 31 October.

As this date is a Saturday, these funds can lodge by Monday 2 November 2020. Trustees of SMSFs that cannot lodge their SMSF annual return (SAR) by their due date should contact the ATO to request a deferral before the due date. Otherwise, the ATO will change the fund’s status on Super Fund Lookup to “Regulation details removed” for any SMSF that is more than 2 weeks overdue on any annual return lodgment, and hasn’t requested a deferral from the ATO.

This status will remain in place until any overdue lodgments have been brought up to date. Having a status of “Regulation details removed” means: APRA funds will not roll over any member benefits to the SMSF; employers cannot make any super guarantee contributions for members of the SMSF; non-lodgment indicates to the ATO that members’ retirement savings may be at risk.

SMSFs that lodge via a tax agent are generally granted a lodgment deferral until January – June 2021 under the ATO lodgment program for tax agents. Registered tax agents can also request an extension of time to lodge via ATO Online services. Otherwise, SMSF trustees can request a lodgment deferral directly from the ATO.

Stuart Jones is a Senior Tax Writer with Thomson Reuters and a respected commentator on all matters superannuation. Stuart is the author of the Australian Superannuation Handbook and contributes extensively to other Thomson Reuters’ services, including the Australian Tax Handbook.

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