Is your tax return overdue? Do you have many late tax returns to lodge?

Most people need to lodge a tax return every year. However, sometimes life gets in the way. If you tax return is overdue or if you haven’t lodged your tax returns for many years, the ATO may issue a failure to lodge on time penalty and apply interest to the income tax payable. Not lodging your tax returns on time can have serious financial consequences and even prevent you from getting a loan.

Don’t let this happen to you! Let us help you get your tax affairs in order.

Over the last few years, HQTax has helped many people get their tax affairs in order. We have even dealt with late tax returns from more than 20 years ago. When you bring your tax work to us, we’ll let the ATO know that we’re working on bringing your affairs into order so they’ll stop any escalation. You won’t have to worry.

We can help! We can help you lodge your overdue tax returns very quickly. We have helped many clients like you. We can also help with a penalty and interest waivers. Naturally, waivers will be subject to the ATO approval. Simply arrange an appointment in one of our offices, or alternatively, we can organise everything for you online.

We provide a fixed fee for late or overdue tax returns.

What is the most common reason to not lodge tax returns on time?

One of the most common reasons for not lodging a tax return is the fear of a large tax bill. Generally, the ATO does not pursue late taxpayers for a few years. Once there are few years of overdue tax returns, the ATO actively pursues the matter believing there is a deliberate effort to avoid paying tax. It is often at this point in time, that a late taxpayer approaches us for help.

Other common reasons for overdue tax returns are:

  • Unforeseen circumstances
  • Health Concerns
  • Family Issues
  • Travel Overseas
  • Starting a new business
  • Closing down a business
  • Lost records due to fire, floods or theft

When you appoint us to be your registered tax agent, you will not need to deal with the ATO yourself at all. We will handle the communications with the ATO on your behalf. We can also negotiate with the ATO on your behalf, to minimise the cost for you as much as possible and also organise a payment plan for you, ensuring that your financial position is not drastically affected. We also have a high success rate of completely waiving ATO penalties and fines for many of our clients.

If you have received a penalty, warning or a notice from the ATO regarding late tax returns, then this is the perfect time to contact us and we’ll take care of this stressful process for you.

Our fee for your tax returns will depend on your circumstance. We can lodge multiple late tax returns for individuals with foreign income, investment property, capital gains, business schedules and so on.  Once we know what is required, we shall be able to provide a fixed fee for our service. The invoice we provide shall be tax deductible meaning you would be able to claim the full fee in your next financial year’s tax return.

If you are in business and have late company or trust tax returns or business activity statements to lodge:

Read our post:  Late Business Activity Statement Lodgments:

If you have a self managed superannuation fund and have late SMSF annual returns or activity statements to lodge:

Read our post:  Late SMSF Annual Lodgments:

The Good News

Having an overdue tax return just means you’re late. That’s all. It is not an issue of bad character, it’s not a crime. It just means you have a few forms you need to lodge.

We can retrieve many years worth tax related and property related information from the ATO directly and will help retrieve other historical information on your behalf, so we can get the tax returns lodged and assessed by the tax office quickly.

The other reason for optimism is that there are hundreds of accountants in Australia, and you’ve found us. We have a lot of experience with ATO lodgments. We’ve dealt with 25 years of tax returns, and $600,000 of debts, so you’re not going to shock us. You’re actually in the right place. We offer personal consultations in Brisbane, as well as online appointments anywhere in the world.

Call us on 1300474829 to book an appointment to see one of our staff today or else contact us and we shall be able to complete late tax returns over the phone or online for you.

Case Studies

So you know your not alone we thought we would share some real-life examples of clients we have helped.

Expat Consultant with prior year returns not lodged

On returning to Australia, we met with our new client a consultant who had rented his apartment out whilst living overseas for the previous 9 years. Prior to leaving Australia, he met with a tax agent who advised him that, as he wouldn’t be making a profit on rental property and as he had no other Australian income, he would not need to lodge an Australian income tax return whilst living overseas.

In some cases, if you move overseas to live you may be considered a non-resident for tax purposes and may not need to lodge an Australian income tax return if you don’t earn any Australian income.

Unfortunately, this was the wrong advice for this client. If you are making a loss on Australian income-earning assets, whether rental, shares, or business you need to lodge a tax return to advise the ATO of the loss. This loss can be carried forward and offset against future income.

As our new client had several years of rental losses, we collated the information and prepared the tax returns and carried forward the losses. As our client had started a consulting business and had not paid any tax on income earned during the year, he appreciated our applying the tax losses to his current income and the reduction to the income tax payable.

An employee with negatively geared rental properties and unlodged tax returns

Our new client asked for our help. Due to family breakdown, divorce, court matters and the subsequent relocation, financial documents had been stored and tax returns became too hard to deal with at that time.

They had received a call from the ATO debt collectors about sum 10 years-worth of outstanding income tax returns and realised that now was the time to deal with the tax.

We advised the ATO that we were now the registered agent and now bringing the tax affairs into order. We collated the information and prepared the tax returns. Our client was surprised to find out they would receive a significant tax refund and no penalties from the ATO for being overdue. Happy with our help, they now manage to keep their affairs up to date.

Surprise windfall to former business owners

A Business with a turnover of around $6m closed in 1999 due to the sale of business. The three owners feel into a dispute after the sale and failed to lodge the final returns for 1999 and 2000. The business was audited and assessed for PAYE tax for the year ended 30 June 2000.

We identified that the business did not have any employees in 2000 as the business was sold on 30 June 1999. We negotiated with the ATO to have all penalties waived, and interest paid on the overpaid PAYE. The ATO subtracted the SGC owing and applied interest on the underpaid SGC. We brought the accounts up to date to 30 June 2020, attended to the windup of the unit trust and the corporate trustee.

We prepared the accounts and tax returns for 22 years and the client received a refund of around $18,000.

HQ Financial Group is a multi-disciplinary firm specialising in taxation, accounting, and financial advisory services to sole traders, individuals, and micro-businesses. Our expertise in Taxation, Wealth Management, Self-managed Superannuation (SMSF) Services, Business Planning and Advisory, and overall Financial Management allows us to proactively provide trusted and balanced advice to our clients that saves both their time and money.
For further information or to get in touch with our expert team, visit us at or call us on 1300 474 829.