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There is less than six months remaining on the Australian Tax Office’s (“ATO”) “Project DO IT: disclose offshore income today”. This initiative is an opportunity for eligible taxpayers to declare any unreported foreign income or assets without being subject to full penalties or criminal prosecution.

The ATO has announced that disclosures made under Project DO IT will only be subject to tax for the years where the tax return is open to review (generally the last 4 years).

To receive the benefits of the initiative, taxpayers must make a “truthful disclosure” to the ATO prior to 19 December 2014.

The ATO’s data matching systems are only getting better and we are noticing increased scrutiny from the ATO in relation to offshore income and assets owned by Australians.

The ATO is also sharing more information with foreign jurisdictions. Earlier this year it entered into an agreement with the Internal Revenue Service in the US to improve reporting of financial information between the two agencies.

Project DO IT is an opportunity for people with offshore assets to declare their income ahead of a global crackdown on people using international tax havens.

If you have undisclosed offshore income or assets and wish to discuss your own position with regards to this project, please contact Murray Howlett, Josh Meggs and Kylee Smith from our Taxation Services Division on (07) 3023 1300.