Tax shouldn't be a minefield for small businesses. Complying should be easy. It may be that there is assistance that Inland Revenue could provide specifically for small businesses. This could include encouraging the use of improved business systems and accounting software that meets specific standards to help ensure the first few years of a business’s life-cycle are successful.
Other forms of assistance could involve ensuring that the right support is available at key events that may result in tax obligations, such as taking on new staff for the first time. Ensuring that businesses get it right first time will be a real focus. For example, software would have the ability to help users correctly classify transactions to ensure tax obligations are correctly met right from the start.
Small businesses may also benefit from some tax rules being “simplified”. This doesn't mean creating specific tax concessions solely to get a “tax break”. Rather, the focus will be on investigating some changes that result in tax simplification for small businesses.
Is the proposed direction outlined above the correct focus to provide benefits for small businesses or are there other more important ways of helping small businesses?
Are there any areas where you think tax for small businesses can be simplified, without creating specific tax breaks?
A particular focus is to ensure that small businesses achieve higher levels of compliance – what are the most important practical ways of promoting and achieving higher levels of compliance?