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Good debt practices

There are a number of healthy things a company can do in the conduct of its affairs.  Some obvious, some not so obvious.

Below is a short checklist of good practice suggestions (in no particular order).

Checklist

 

  1. Not incur debts in the first instance.
  2. Checking invoices and ATO tax office statements carefully – ensuring there are no additional, unapproved items.  Particularly in relation to taxation matters, it is critical that you check these thoroughly!
  3. Disputing unapproved items quickly.  Ideally in writing.  Particularly concerning alleged taxation debts, directors tend to do the opposite.  And, a director under pressure already, often fails to fully read a tax notice of assessment.  (Sometimes they are just plain depressing).  A director must resist the urge to bury the document and should immediately dispute any tax ruling or assessment that they believe is incorrect.  Failing to dispute assessments can have huge consequences later when and if a creditor’s statutory demand has been issued – options become vastly more limited.
  4. Putting everything in writing.  i.e. using email particularly when entering contractual arrangements.  This can provide an important record of the exact agreement.
  5. Confirming discussions in writing by email after discussing things with the other party.  i.e. if one side has made concessions about the debt, the time when due or payable or similar, send an email immediately afterwards confirming what was discussed.  It’s much easier to remember at the time than 2 months later.
  6. Keeping documents and records.  Ideally electronically in an inbox.
  7. Backing up and saving documents and records.  There are many good free or low-cost cloud solutions for storing emails and documents.

If your company needs help arranging its file, contract and legal documentation, or if your company needs to dispute a tax notice of assessment or director’s penalty notice call us for a free consultation, call 1300-327123 or complete the form below.

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