The ATO has a responsibility to government and the community to make sure that everyone pays the correct amount of tax under the law.
The ATO undertakes a range of integrity checks both before and after they issue refunds or payments. In some cases, the ATO may contact you to verify some details before we release the refund or payment, or we may contact you after a refund or payment is made. For example, we may do this:
- If a transaction varies significantly in an amount from normal activity
- If we suspect that an error may have occurred
- To combat potential fraud.
The ATO uses specialist technology to help identify and review tax returns that may contain incorrect information or lack of information that should be there. Claims outside normal occupation or industry ranges are subject to a thorough review before a refund is issued.
The ATO verify GST refunds by phoning or visiting businesses and contacting third parties to substantiate claims, including checking for omitted or incorrectly reported property sales and purchases.
Tax returns that are held for review and action before release include returns identified as containing 'high risk' refund claims.