The Australia Tax Office (ATO) wants to do its job properly and is bent on collecting all taxes from its citizens. Even those tech-savvy bunch belonging to the crypto crowd won’t be able to escape its clutches as the agency will be using the latest in data matching techniques, as well as the cooperation of other countries, to determine if Australians have been paying the right amount of tax – including those investors who may be hiding their crypto assets offshore.
Cryptocurrency Included in ATO’s Hit List
This year will be a first for many Australian crypto investors as it would be their first time making cryptocurrency-related tax declarations. Perhaps in a bid to deter any possible thoughts of tax avoidance by investors, cryptocurrency is now included in ATO’s hit list for 2018, according to the Australia Financial Magazine.
These days, ATO is certainly well-equipped in handling potential difficulties in the collection of crypto-related taxes from an industry where the idea of anonymity is well-entrenched. Australia just strengthened its anti-money laundering rules, allowing authorities to pry into the identities of any investor doing business with any crypto exchange in the country.
ATO to Track Australians Hiding Their Cryptos Offshore
However, the Australian Tax Office’s efforts in collecting the right amount of tax won’t be limited to within Australia’s borders alone. The agency revealed that it already has plans in place to check if crypto investors are paying the right amount of tax – even those who might have hidden their crypto holdings offshore.
ATO will be using Australia’s data sharing agreements with other countries to ensure that taxable crypto-related income is accounted for. Coupled with data-matching techniques, ATO acting deputy commissioner Martin Jacobs is not worried at all regarding potential tax avoidance issues posed by offshore crypto holdings.
Jacobs told the Australia Financial Review that:
“We’re alert to the potential compliance risks that arise from cryptocurrencies but we’re not really alarmed about them. Where people attempt to deliberately avoid these obligations we will attempt to take action. We have a range of existing powers that are designed to address unexplained wealth and conspicuous consumption that may arise through profits derived through cryptocurrency investment.”