The ATO has asked trustees and members of SMSFs to ignore any letters from the regulator regarding claims for a personal superannuation contribution deduction that would need to be reported via its Member Account Transaction Service (MATS).
In an update on its website, the ATO noted it had written to 25,000 people, and their tax agents, who had claimed the deduction in their 2019 tax return and details of an acknowledged notice of intent has not been reported by their fund via MATS.
The ATO said some SMSFs have also received the letters, but should disregard them as reporting via MATS was not a requirement for SMSFs, but rather a reporting requirement for funds regulated by the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority.
“Unfortunately, some SMSF trustees/members may have mistakenly received this letter.”
“If you are a SMSF trustee/member who received this letter and you have lodged a notice of intent to claim a deduction with your SMSF and received an acknowledgment from your SMSF of the notice prior to lodging your return, you can ignore this letter.”
SMSF members were encouraged to include the full name, Australian business number or tax file number, and account number of their fund when claiming a personal superannuation contribution deduction in their individual income tax return to prevent any confusion with contribution payments that need to be recorded in MATS.
The ATO also alerted SMSFs to be wary of scams from people impersonating it in an attempt to steal money or personal identifying information, or offering paid services that are available for free via the regulator.
The regulator stated that if fund members were unsure if a phone call, text message or email was genuine,they should not provide any information and should contact the ATO to check on the validity of the contact.
In February, the ATO started an SMSF-specific alert service that sends a text and/or email to SMSF members whenever key changes are made to their fund.
SMSF members were encouraged to contact the trustees of their fund and other representatives authorised to make changes to the SMSF if they receive notifications about changes of which they are unaware through this service, and to contact the ATO directly if they believe personal details had been accessed illegally.