Australian Crypto Investors May Not Have Access To All Information They Need To Provide To The Tax Office

December 23, 2021

The Australian Tax Office (ATO) said in a statement that it is doubtful if it can follow the crypto economy using investors’ and taxpayers’ own data.

ATO commissioner Chris Jordan said at the ATAX Conference on Tax Administration earlier this week that new crypto investors aren’t fully aware of the crypto tax regime, and that there are inherent challenges that make it difficult to fully understand how to submit certain digital assets to the crypto office.

He added that they can’t rely on taxpayers understanding they need to maintain track of their investment income and capital gains and report it on their tax returns in a sector that is fast increasing with new investors.

Jordan says that a widespread misperception is that crypto-assets are only taxable when cashed back into Australian dollars, but this does not appear to be the case and that most individuals require a “nudge” from the tax office to remember and pay tax.

He stated that the government was working on improved data collection, management, and sharing systems so that taxpayers are aware of what they need to do to pay their tax debts.

Jordan also requested AUSTRAC, Australia’s Transaction Reports and Analysis Center, to assist in the development of a stronger regulatory framework that the tax office can utilize to regulate and educate customers.

Cryptocurrency has been viewed with suspicion by Australian officials. Many people have advised customers to be cautious about the assets they acquire because cryptocurrency is by definition a high-risk product that is not well regulated.

While the country’s central bank has labeled cryptocurrencies as “fads,” this hasn’t dampened investor interest in them.

Even Australia’s local stock market has been reluctant to welcome crypto firms, despite the fact that many Australians are considering giving crypto gifts this Christmas.