Single Touch Payroll (STP) is a government initiative to streamline employer reporting obligations.
Using STP, employers can report their employees’ salaries and wages, pay as you go (PAYG) withholding and super information to us from their payroll solution, at the same time they pay their employees.
STP reporting started on 1 July 2018 for employers with 20 or more employees. It was extended to include small employers (with 19 or less employees) from 1 July 2019. Some exceptions may apply, for more information, see Single Touch Payroll on ato.gov.au.
STP Phase 2
The government announced in the 2019-20 federal Budget that it would expand the data collected through Single Touch Payroll (STP) by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).
The STP phase 2 changes are now law and are reflected in:
- The Changing Income Reporting and Other measures Act 2020 (which changes the Social Security assessment model) will come into effect 7 December 2020.
- The Treasury Laws Amendment (2020 Measures No.2) Bill (which allows the Commissioner to collect CSA amounts) passed and received Royal Assent.
Building on STP’s first phase of streamlining the way employers report payroll and superannuation information to the ATO, STP phase 2 will assist in the administration of social security for citizens in a more efficient, accurate and timely manner. This will be delivered through the new PAYEVNT.0004 2020 service.
The technical service design artefacts for PAYEVNT.0004 2020 (Single Touch Payroll phase 2) are now available. Message Structure Tables and validation rules have been published on the Standard Business Reporting website and the service is available in our External Vendor Testing Environment (EVTE)
Information, resources and a range of consultation and engagement activities are available to assist with the build, test and implementation of the new PAYEVNT.0004 2020 service.
- Single Touch Payroll document library
- Single Touch Payroll industry updates
- Sending service providers and Single Touch Payroll
- Single Touch Payroll consultation
- Listing your Single Touch Payroll product
20 July 2020
Some employers are finalising their end of financial year Single Touch Payroll data with incorrect dates being used in Pay or Update events.
When finalising their 2019–20 end of financial year STP information employers should aim to:
- set the date to 30 June 2020. If they do not change the date, the update will be applied to the 2020–21 financial year in error
- use an Update event if finalising after 30 June 2020
- use period start and end dates for employees in the same financial year as the pay/update date.
7 July 2020
STP Phase 2 timeframes have changed. We will continue to liaise with you to ensure an appropriate lead time is allowed, recognising the size and complexity of the required change.
We anticipate voluntary reporting may be available from early 2021 however we will confirm the dates as more information becomes available.
We will keep you updated through the Software developers website and Digital service providers newsletter. These channels will also be used to advertise information sessions facilitated by the digital partnership office and open for all. DSP to register. If you have specific questions or require assistance with building STP in your software you can, ask a question in Online services for DSPs.
16 April 2020
Due to the impact of COVID-19 on the community, the ATO’s immediate focus is on supporting the Australian community by delivering critical stimulus to those most affected.
As a result, we will postpone the availability of the ATO’s test environment (EVTE) for pay event 2020 (STP Phase 2) which we had previously indicated would be available from 20 April 2020.
For further information and to provide feedback email the Single Touch Payroll mailbox.