David McDonald
Contact West Carr & Harvey

Audit Shield – do I need it?

In the past you may have received information about our Audit Shield service. This information is provided to you in order to allow you the option to consider taking up this service in the event that you were to subject to an audit, review or investigation.

What is an audit?
The ATO regularly conducts audits, investigations, reviews or examinations of lodged tax returns or compliance obligations to ensure all activity has been accounted for in accordance with Government guidelines.

What is Audit Shield?
Audit Shield provides payment of your accountant’s fees incurred for attending to an audit on your behalf.  The reason this is available is because when an audit or investigation occurs, there is great deal of work required to be done on your behalf by your accountant in order to comply with the ATO’s requests for information. This work is then billed to you (the client). This can amount to several thousand dollars. With audit shield, your costs will be covered, up to prescribed limits, and you should not have any out of pocket expenses.

Do I need it?
We are asked this question a lot! It really depends on your own individual circumstances and is ultimately your choice. Some of us may never have a car accident, but we often choose to take our motor vehicle insurance.

You may also never be audited. However, we have had experiences with clients who have been audited and the costs can be extensive. This is why we offer our Audit Shield service.

Who gets audited?
Anyone can be subject to an audit or investigation, whether it be due to random selection or additional scrutiny from the ATO on your specific matters. It does not matter that you have an excellent accountant (which you do) and all your books are completely in order. The ATO can still order an investigation.

If the audit shows my accounts are compliant – do I still need to pay?
Yes. The Audit Shield service is to assist you with the unavoidable costs of work required by your accountant to fulfil the ATO’s requests for information.

We hope this helps in your decision making. If you require further information please feel free to contact us.

Audit Shield information sheet available here.