Audit Advisory

Audits are part of the compliance process of the Australian Government. We understand this process and will help you navigate the complexities of bureaucracy and terminology during this process in the event that your company is audited by AusIndustry and/or the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

Swanson Reed has a formidable record of defending our client’s R&D tax incentive registrations at audit or review. We have a highly successful history with both AusIndustry reviews and ATO audits across a range of industries and our Audit Defence Advisory Service is what separates us from most other accounting firms.

We have successfully defended audits covering issues such as ‘on own behalf’, ‘guaranteed return to investors’ and ‘R&D tax incentive eligibility’ for our clients. We regularly manage AusIndustry compliance continuum reviews.

Audit Advisory Services

Swanson Reed specialises in advisory services relating to:

AusIndustry Compliance Continuum Reviews

  • Registration Profile Review – This usually involves a review of the submitted and processed  ‘AusIndustry application for registration of R&D activities’ form.
  • Registration Desk Assessment – This is usually in a ‘Request for Further Information’ (RFI) to the claimant company regarding R&D activity eligibility.
  • Compliance Activity Review –  This usually involves a site visit to the claimant company to discuss the eligibility issues that were not clarified in the desk assessment.
  • Finding about Registration (s27J) or Statutory Assessment (s39L) –  This is a  legally binding decision regarding eligibility of one or more registered R&D activities.

Internal and External Reviews

  • R&D Tax Incentive Internal Reviews (s39S and s30D) – This process is an internal review of a reviewable decision, such as s27J finding  to an independent party within Innovation Australia.
  • R&D Tax Incentive External Reviews (s39T and s30E) – This process involves an appeal of a reviewable decision on matters of fact in the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT).

ATO Risk Reviews and Audits

  • Client Risk and R&D Offset Point-of-Lodgement Reviews – This review aims to develop an understanding of the taxpayers’ business and identify any potential non-compliance issues.
  • Specific Risk and R&D Risk Reviews – This review examines specific risk issues with a view to determine the likelihood of non-compliance.
  • Specific Audits – This audit is an in-depth investigation of one or more previously identified risk areas from an earlier review.
  • Comprehensive Audits – This audit is an in-depth investigation of multiple previously identified risk areas from an earlier review.

How we can help?

An audit can be a very stressful experience to all stakeholders.

A personal hands-on approach during the Audit

We will:

  • hold your hand through the whole event while advising you on the most prudent actions;
  • reduce your stress levels by attending the audit with you and liaising with the assessor on your behalf;
  • prepare a straight forward and simple audit management plan; and
  • assist with articulating and documenting an argument directly to the AusIndustry and/or ATO assessor.

Forward Audit planning with TaxTrex – R&D tax claim and documentation software

TaxTrex will:

  • document your future R&D claims in real-time with three simple 20 minute surveys
  • reduce your ongoing R&D consulting firm fee costs and time to compile a claim
  • providing real-time risk assessment alerts to help you prevent a compliance issue

Click here to learn more about TaxTrex or watch the short 30 second video below.

Industry Specific Issues

AusIndustry undertakes periodic reviews of R&D activities and the documentation used to substantiate those activities.  The below industry specific checklists contain some of the information AusIndustry may review or request in the event an activity assessment is undertaken.


Advisory Services in the AAT

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal was established in 1976 to provide independent merits review of administrative decisions.

The Tribunal reviews a range of administrative decisions made by Innovation Australia and the ATO.

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal proceedings is conducted with as little formality and technicality and with as much expedition and a proper consideration of the matters before the Tribunal as the legislation permits.

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal is not bound by rules of evidence and is able to inform itself in any manner it considers appropriate.

The Tribunal exercises powers in divisions which include, Innovation Australia IR&D Act eligibility Appeals, R&D Expenditure Appeals and other general taxation and administrative appeals.

Swanson Reed has experience in providing advisory services relating to the s39T/s30E external review of reviewable internal review decisions in the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.

Please contact us if you would like to discuss these specific advisory services further.