Home – New Forums Starting your journey Advice needed for past tax, abn and new business

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  • #986486
    JamieM
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    • Total posts: 8
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    Hey guys !

    This seems like a nice place with lots of nice people, hoping to get some advice.

    quick brief:

    got ABN about 10 yrs ago, started business then, did a tax return or two, business failed, health failed life was crap for a long time.

    I was working here and there (self-employed) but only just managing to make ends meet, very low income, no profit, some years not working due to health reasons.

    have not lodged tax return since.

    moved somewhere in the middle, and address was never changed at the ATO , not that i knew anything about this stuff.

    fast forward to now, older, smarter, wiser and healthier.

    Starting a new business this year and want to move forward full stream ahead, no mucking around.

    now, some questions:

    i just learned my abn was canceled, should i re-apply for the ABN along with a business name?

    not lodging tax returns for many moons, this will need to be sorted out, but will take me many months to backtrack old statements etc, but once i do and have some extra finances, it will all get sorted with an accountant.

    would there be issues re-applying for ABN if past tax not done, a lot of years can be classified as not trading. i would not owe any money to the ATO due to no profits.

    ok, so want i would like to do at the moment is:

    register new business name
    re-apply for ABN
    Get a business bank account (once abn goes through)

    any advice anyone can give would be greatly appreciated before i start anything.

    thanks so much

    #1158033
    Anonymous
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    • Total posts: 11,464
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    Hi JamieM,

    I’m not the right person to help you with your questions, but I did want to welcome you to the forums.

    Hopefully some of our resident tax experts will be along soon to provide you with some useful info :)

    In the meantime, welcome aboard, and good on you for taking another run at it.

    Good luck,
    Jayne

    #1158034
    JamieM
    Member
    • Total posts: 8
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    Thanks love !

    hope i can get some info here, i really don’t know where to start.

    #1158035
    JacquiPryor
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    Hi Jamie,

    Will wait for an accountant to pop in and give some suggestion as to re-applying (or reactivating) your cancelled ABN and whether failure to lodge tax returns will affect doing so etc. I did find this page that explains why ABNs are cancelled and how to contact them if you think you are still entitled to the ABN.

    As to the overdue tax returns – sometimes penalties will be applied for late lodgement, but, from other discussions I have read here the ATO seems to be a little more flexible and understanding when you act proactively rather than waiting for them to contact you about failure to lodge past years returns.

    What I can tell you though is that you will need an ABN in place before you can register a business name. If you are intending to operate under any name other than your own personal name then you legally must register the business name accordingly. For the last 18 months or so business names have been nationwide (prior to that they were state based) and are now registered through ASIC (http://www.asic.gov.au).

    So you will need to sort out your ABN before you can register the business name. And then, as you mention open a business bank account. If you are operating as a sole trader then the account will effectively be in your name trading as business name. As a sole trader you remain the legal entity behind the business and the business name is kind of like an alias for the person (i.e. you) that is operating the business.

    All the best with it :)

    #1158036
    bjmyers
    Participant
    • Total posts: 17
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    Hi Jamie,

    Once an ABN is issued by the tax office, it will continue to belong to you for life. They might cancel it if you’re not using it, but it is simply a matter of getting in touch with them to re-activate it when you need it again. If you’re running your new business as a sole trader again, you’ll end up with the same ABN as before.

    You’ll need the ABN sorted out before registering a trading name or opening a bank account.

    As for prior tax returns, the best thing to do there is get them sorted out as soon as possible. I’ve not seen the ATO deny an ABN application in the past because of outstanding lodgements, but it doesn’t look good. The ATO will withhold refunds if you get behind in your lodgements, so if you have a lot of start-up costs with GST to claim, it might pay to get these sorted out sooner rather than later.

    Good luck!

    #1158037
    JamieM
    Member
    • Total posts: 8
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    Thanks for the reply

    business is super simple, no start-up costs, no GST, low overheads (internet based)

    actually it is already setup (needed to work/study first), and i have clients, just need to get it all registered and legit.

    I guess i would contact an accountant, in a few months once everything is running smooth and i have some savings.

    not much i can really do about past returns at the moment, as i don’t have the funds to pay accountancy fees.

    ABN i know i can get back online, as i did one for someone else recently. think it took about 30 days.

    any further thoughts on this appreciated…

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