How to Prepare Your Business Activity Statement (BAS)
Business Activity Statement or ‘BAS’ is a form of taxation report based on business tax obligations. It is submitted to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) monthly, quarterly or annually depending on how you are registered with the ATO. Before starting your BAS, you need to read the ATO guide for the form completion requirements. Identify whether your accounting method matches GST obligations for the cash or accrual accounting system. It allows you to account for the transactions that need to be included in the period’s BAS.
Two weeks before the end of the BAS reporting period, the ATO sends a statement for completion. It should be returned to the Office on the specified date of submission. It can also be lodged electronically by your bookkeeper or accountant. Computations and records for BAS should be done carefully. Mistakes and errors in data may result in penalties. Seeking help from qualified accountants can help your business lodge an accurate BAS. Tax laws should be followed strictly. To help you in preparing your BAS, here are some smart tips to keep in mind.
Tips on BAS Preparation
- Categorize all accounts correctly. Categorizing all accounts and statements makes it easier for you to lodge your BAS. Make sure that you are including all statements for the given period of the BAS submission. Using a reliable accounting system such as Xero or MYOB can help you segregate and group all financial records correctly. See to it that the groupings are correct based on BAS requirements. Before running reports, review all records from time to time to avoid inaccuracy.
- Know your BAS return period. You can generally choose from monthly, quarterly or annually BAS return period, depending on your turnover and other factors. When computing your records, double check if you are including all documents filed for the right period for BAS computation.
- Collate all your records. Keep all business records for reference and documentation. All receipts and invoices for the company’s financial transactions should be kept. Using an accounting system, enter all necessary financial documents including the date, type of transaction, description, and GST (if applicable). Once complete, total all these records and complete your BAS as required by the ATO.
- Keep accurate records. Every business is required to have accurate records of all its transactions. Your completed BAS should match your electronic records. Once submitted to ATO, the ATO will require you to pay the net amount of GST collected. On the other hand, you may be due a refund based on the Net GST paid. Make sure you keep a copy of your BAS for documentation purposes.
Preparing and lodging your BAS can be stressful but with an expert’s assistance, you can be guided thoroughly on what to do for your tax obligations. Here at The Money Edge, our qualified accountants and bookkeepers can help you prepare and lodge your BAS easily and on time. Feel free to call us at (07) 4151 8898 for more information.