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While most people do the right thing, a small number of people who engage in refund fraud will be held to account by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).
Examples of refund fraud
Refund fraud is when a person claims a tax refund or other benefit by giving false information to the ATO. It is undertaken in a deliberate and deceitful way rather than a careless or accidental mistake.
It can also involve identity crime, where personal identity information is stolen and used to lodge fake refund claims in someone else’s name.
Refund fraud can include:
- Making false work-related expense claims
- Providing fake information and documents, such as invoices and receipts
- Lodging fraudulent returns using false or stolen identities
- Claiming GST refunds through fraudulent business registrations.
If an honest mistake or you have fallen behind in your obligations, the ATO will work with you to find a solution. The ATO will hold people who deliberately set out to cheat the system to account and this can include administrative penalties, or even criminal prosecution.
For more information and examples about refund fraud then click here.
Please contact us if you need assistance in preparing your tax returns.