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An Australian government statutory agency and the principal revenue collection body for the Australian government.

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Australian Tax Office (ATO) Seeks Annual Tax Returns

Regulators are framing the severe set of laws to effectively regulate cryptocurrencies or digital assets within the regions. Just like HongKong’s SFC planned for tightening regulations, the Australian Tax Office or ATO has sent warnings to Australians to open up their annual returns gaining from cryptocurrency. “However, we have observed through our ATO community channel and advice areas an increase in questions relating to tax obligations of cryptocurrency activity, which we see as a positive in people wanting to do the right thing in meeting their obligations.” Cryptocurrency Not a Currency But a Property – Australia Australia’s consent sees Bitcoin and cryptocurrency as a property and not currency. They assume it a property for taxpayers for which they’re liable to pay capital gain tax on digital assets sold for a profit after July 2017. The tax on cryptocurrency in Australia counts for the period of 12 months, as such if anyone is holding the cryptocurrency without using it or selling it either, will be responsible to pay 50 percent capital gains tax discount. This is how they make holders of crypto as the investors. Accordingly, taxpayers have to keep regular records of their transactions with the dates and the number of transactions in terms of Australian dollars citing the purpose of the transaction and the party involved to complete the trade. Moreover, ATO urges to add the other party’s wallet addresses for better clarity regarding the records. With this, it also intimidates crypto enthusiasts that they can also access such records by connecting through the exchanges or wallets that completes the transactions. Determining the Impact of Cryptocurrency All the digital currency exchanges in Australia has to be registered with the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre. Consequently, ATO reports that these exchanges have to be vocal about their customers whose transactions surpasses $10000 limit. Additionally, these trading platforms have to verify the identity of their customers. While investigating the impact of cryptocurrencies, ATO spokesperson told that; “While there is no specific label on the capital gains schedule or income tax return to identify how many people have invested in cryptocurrency we are still looking at lodgement activity this year to determine any significant impact of cryptocurrencies,” The post Australian Tax Office (ATO) Seeks Annual Tax Returns appeared first on Coingape.

Australian Taxation Office Warns Public Against Paying Fake Tax Debts At Bitcoin ATMs

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has warned its citizens about tax scammers demanding payment through bitcoin ATMs. In its warning, ATO said that it has fielded reports of over 28,000 attempted scams since July of this year and estimated that Australians have paid almost $1 million to scammers. It added that payments through Bitcoin ATMs have now overtaken iTunes vouchers as the most common method of scam payment reported to the tax authority. Assistant Commissioner Kath Anderson said scammers are growing increasingly sophisticated and hope to exploit vulnerable people, often using aggressive tactics to swindle people out of their money or personal information. “November is a prime time for scammers as they know lots of people have tax bills to pay,” Anderson said. “Be wary if someone contacts you demanding payment of a tax debt you didn’t know you owed. Our advice is simple – the ATO will never ask you to make a payment into an ATM or via gift or pre-paid cards such as iTunes and Visa cards, or direct credit to be paid to a personal bank account. If you have any doubts about the legitimacy of a call, hang up and call us.” Last month, scammers managed to scam more than $35,000 out of four Australian immigrants by telling them they needed to pay a tax debt. The victims were told that if they failed to pay an alleged tax debt then they would be arrested. In some cases they were told that the scammer had spoken to the individual’s accountant or to the Australian Federal Police in order to confirm the debt. Anderson said ATO officials would never demand immediate payment of a debt, use aggressive or rude behaviour, or threaten taxpayers with arrest. “That’s just not how we do business,” Anderson said. “We understand that it can sometimes be difficult to pay tax bills on time, so we urge anyone who is worried about paying to contact us as soon as possible as there are a range of ways we can help.” Anderson also said that she is concerned about the number of taxpayers sharing their personal information with scammers, adding that the tax authority have recorded nearly 6,000 instances of taxpayers handing their sensitive data to scammers since July. “Your identifying information like tax file numbers, bank account numbers or your date of birth are the keys to your identity, and can be used by scammers to break into your life if they are compromised,” Anderson said. “If you’ve received an unsolicited email or text, or if you have any doubts about whether any contact is legitimately from the ATO, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us to check. Scammers have been known to impersonate tax agents too it’s recommended that you hang up and call your agent direct on a number you have sourced independently.” Earlier this year, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission published its annual Scamwatch report, revealing that Australians had lost an estimated $2 million in scams involving cryptocurrencies and initial coin offerings (ICO). About $1.2 million was lost in bitcoin scams alone.

Australian Taxation Office Issues Word of Caution for Bitcoin Tax Payers Against Fraudsters

Beware of Fraudsters Demanding Tax Debts in Bitcoin, Australia’s Taxman Warns The nefarious activities of scammers impersonating tax officials and demanding that tax debts be paid in bitcoin and via other “unusual” channels has now come to light. The Australia’s taxman has now warned citizens against the activities of these scammers. The Australian Tax Office said these scammers are threatening to get the federal police to send Australians to jail if their tax debts were not paid urgently. In substantiating this report, the tax authority cited a case of Darren (real names withheld) who was contacted by a fraudster telling him that he owed the tax man AU$ 9, 000, threatening that the sum be paid immediately or Darren will risk a five years jail time. To clear thing up, Daren was said to have given the contact details of his tax agent to the scammer who called conveniently. Darren’s tax agent was found to be in a meeting. However, there was another individual named Grey who purportedly worked in the same practice and who offered to assist. Grey then ‘corroborated’ the fraudster’s claims. Australia’s tax authority noted that a fake conversation was initiated between Grey and the original scammer with Grey agreeing there was an error with Darren’s tax return and that he owed money to the tax man. Grey told Darren to go to a specific location and pay the $9,000 immediately. Darren withdrew cash and deposited it into a Bitcoin [ATM] machine, ATO wrote on their website. Darren’s and many other victim’s experience will not be the first time the tax man is sounding a warning against fraudsters who now collect such payments via cryptocurrencies. At some time in March, the ATO warned against artists who were posing as employees of the tax authority. At the time it was estimated that the fraudsters had collected bitcoin more than AUD$50,000 from their victims in a scheme that had started in 2017. Kath Anderson, ATO’s assistant commissioner had said then that they, “became aware of scammers seeking payment in Bitcoin last year,” Kath Anderson, ATO’s assistant commissioner, said then. “So far, we have seen over $50,000 paid in Bitcoin to scammers claiming fake ATO tax debts.” The renewed operations ATO say is not only done via bitcoin but by also demanding ‘tax debts’ to be paid in other unusual methods such as iTunes balance, pre-paid visa cards and store gift cards. The ATO said citizens can avoid being conned by staying informed about the activities of the tax office to have a clear knowledge of the ‘debts owed and avoid being scammed.
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ATO to Target Crypto Traders Using International Data Agreements

Australia’s financial press is expecting that the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) will take a hard stance on cryptocurrency investors this tax season, with the ATO recently vowing to leverage international data-matching agreements in order to track the taxation obligations of Australian cryptocurrency traders. Also Read: The Weekly: Coinbase Custody Opens, Malta Adopts Crypto Law, Bittrex Invades Europe ATO to Leverage International Data-Matching Agreements to Target Crypto Traders The Australian Tax Office has announced that it will leverage data sharing agreements made between Australia and other nations to determine the tax obligations of Australian cryptocurrency investors. “We’re alert to the potential compliance risks that arise from cryptocurrencies but we’re not really alarmed about them,” ATO acting deputy commissioner Martin Jacobs told Australian Financial Review. “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,” Mr. Jacobs added. Mr. Jacobs also emphasized that changes to anti-money laundering rules mandating that Australian crypto exchanges identify wallet holders “will enable data exchanges to collect cryptocurrency trading information, which we’ll be able to access and use in our engagement activities.” Many Traders May be Unaware of Tax Obligations Paul Drum of accounting firm CPA Australia has speculated many Australian cryptocurrency users may not be fully aware of their tax obligations, stating “We’re at the pointy end of a financial year of seismic profits and if people were thinking they could fly under the radar, I’ve got bad news. […] People wrongly believe they’re getting a windfall gain that isn’t taxed. That could be a costly mistake.” Mr. Drum also warned that many cryptocurrency traders are not aware of the tax event triggered by each “disposal” of virtual currency holdings, emphasizing that cryptocurrency-to-cryptocurrency trades require that traders declare any profits generated. “Even if you traded your ripples for bitcoin, you have to figure out whether you made a profit on the trade,” he said. ATO Criticized Over Opaque Tax Guidance for Cryptocurrency Users Australian Financial Review recently spoke to Adam Dimac of legal firm Hall and Wilcox, who are currently representing “Max” – an Australian lawyer who is currently in a dispute with the ATO regarding how his $7 million in cryptocurrency holdings should be taxed. Mr. Dimac emphasized the lack of clarity surrounding the ATO’s regulations, stating “There are a lot of technical issues for which there is just no guidance at all. One example is initial coin offerings. From a tax point of view, there’s basically no guidance on how they are treated. It’s really new ground.” Max’s lawyers are seeking to argue the personal use exemption. However, Mr. Dimac concedes that the team is “hearing it’s going to be hard to argue the personal use exemption. There are individuals who can genuinely say ‘yeah, I went into this out of intellectual curiosity and as a hobby. I’m a Millennial and this is how I think, I like to challenge the status quo. Five years later, it’s become $10 million.’ But nobody quite knows how the ATO is going to view it because everyone’s circumstances are different. And even then, the ATO is developing their thinking over time as they come to consider different scenarios and new cryptos come into the market.” Laura Spencer of Sladen Legal also believes that the ATO has failed to provide sufficient guidance regarding the tax obligations of cryptocurrency investors, stating that “The insufficient guidelines and absence of case law in this area of tax leaves early adopters of cryptocurrencies in great uncertainty. As the treatment of cryptocurrencies will play an even greater role in the future, we await further comments from the commissioner.” What is your response to the ATO’s decision to leverage international data-sharing agreements to target crypto investors? Share your thoughts in the comments section below! Images courtesy of Shutterstock At there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even lookup the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more. The post ATO to Target Crypto Traders Using International Data Agreements appeared first on Bitcoin News.
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Researches from MIT, Stanford Set to Replace Bitcoin with Their Groundbreaking Crypto Project

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BitPay CEO Says Bitcoin Is Solving Real Problems Around the World

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Trillion Dollar Market Cap, Ethereum Chain Splits & Stellar Lumens Fund - Crypto News

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