Keep your ABN Active and Tax Returns Lodged
Are you a sole trader, trust, or partnership who has not lodged an income tax return or BAS for a long while?
If your ABN is inactive for more than two years, your ABN might be cancelled once the Australian Business Register (ABR) is checked. These checks will be happening throughout 2018.
Not only do you need to keep any business name details up to date (and paid for through ASIC), your ABN details also need to be kept active. This can be done through lodgements to the ATO (Australian Tax Office).
Of course, if you cease trading, you should advise the ABR.
Small sole traders - please lodge your tax returns
Smaller sole traders with income below the tax-free threshold (of $18,000) often believe that they have no need to lodge an income tax return. However, they must lodge the individual tax return, including the supplementary section and business/professional schedule (for individuals), regardless of this. That way, the ABN will remain as ‘active’ in the ABR register.
By the way, if you don’t lodge tax returns through a registered tax agent, you have until 31 October to lodge your tax for the financial year 2017-18. If you use an agent to lodge, like Team Accounting, then the closing date is more flexible. Prior years tax returns should be lodged as soon as possible to avoid a penalty.
Just like the public does, you can use the ABN lookup to see your business status and GST status.