Why you should be using a registered BAS agent.
Every business that is registered for GST in Australia must complete a Business Activity Statement (BAS) for the ATO on a regular basis.
A contract bookkeeper that is providing a BAS service for a fee must be a registered BAS agent whereas an in-house bookkeeper does not. By outsourcing to a BAS agent you know that you are getting someone that has been through training and has the relevant experience to know what they are doing. They are required to complete on-going education and you can ensure that they are keeping updated on all the latest in the bookkeeping industry.
As per the Tax Practitioners Board, a BAS Service relate to:
ascertaining and advising an entity about liabilities, obligations or entitlements under a BAS provision
representing a client in their dealings with the ATO in relation to a BAS provision
These BAS provisions include: GST law / wine equalisation tax law / luxury car lax law / fuel tax law /fringe benefits tax law (collection and recovery only) / pay as you go (PAYG) withholding /PAYG instalments.
As such, a contract bookkeeper must be a registered BAS agent to perform the following:
Activity statement preparation and lodgement
Setting up GST codes in accounting software
Determining the tax coding of invoices
Determining liabilities and obligations in regards to the above BAS provisions
Payroll related - determining withholding obligations and preparation of payment summaries