The Government is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr Robert Cornall AO, a former Secretary of the Attorney-General’s Department, to lead a review of the Scheme for the Compensation for Detriment Caused by Defective Administration (the CDDA Scheme).
This review was commissioned to consider the operation by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) of the CDDA Scheme in relation to small business.
The CDDA Scheme allows Commonwealth Government agencies to pay discretionary compensation when a person or organisation has suffered detriment as a result of defective administration, but when there is no legal requirement to make a payment.
Undertaking a review of the ATO’s implementation of the CDDA Scheme will ensure that small business have access to a fair and transparent system for administrative review of small business tax disputes.
The review will consider:
- the consistency of the ATO’s CDDA Scheme processes for small businesses,
- the timeliness of decisions,
- how effectively findings are communicated to small business,
- how independent decision-making can be best achieved in future; and
- the adequacy of compensation for small businesses that have suffered an economic and / or personal loss as a consequence of the ATO’s actions.
Mr Cornall has been asked to report to the Government in early 2019.
This review comes on top of Government action to make it simpler for small businesses to resolve tax disputes with the ATO.
A new Small Business Taxation Division within the Administrative Appeals Tribunal will open on 1 March. As a general rule the ATO will not be represented in the Small Business Taxation Division by external lawyers. Other features of proceeding in this new Division are a reduced filing fee and decisions will be made within 28 days of the hearing.