InFocus May 2020 - Volume 29 Issue 4
- An update on Registered Agent Terms & Conditions and compliance programs
- Illegal phoenix activity
- ASIC COVID-19 resources and media releases
- Other links we like
Following the 2018 release of the registered agent terms and conditions (T&Cs), ASIC has updated the T&Cs and will run ongoing compliance programs.
The aim of the upcoming programs is to assist registered agents to understand their obligations and ensure all conduct adheres to standards as set out under the T&Cs and the Electronic Lodgement Protocol (ELP).
These compliance programs will initially focus on:
- ASIC registered agent eligibility and the registration status of their company;
- requirements for downloading ASIC annual statements on behalf of clients; and
- user review for individuals registered to use ASIC's Agent portal.
Registered agents should regularly review the T&Cs and the ELP to ensure that business practices and conduct continues to meet requirements.
For more information about the registered agent terms and conditions, please visit our website.
Within the current environment, businesses may experience financial distress which could lead to trading while insolvent. Sometimes, when businesses are in financial distress, pre-insolvency advisors may initiate contact and offer to help.
Unfortunately, some of these advisors have dishonest intentions and their advice may be to engage in criminal activities, such as illegal phoenix activity.
ASIC always recommends that people should seek the advice of a trusted business adviser, such as a lawyer or accountant.
ASIC’s MoneySmart website contains useful information about financial support and making financial decisions if you are affected by COVID-19. It provides information on early access to superannuation, protecting yourself from scams, dealing with cancellations and refunds as well as several other topics. You can also subscribe to a COVID-19 newsletter from the MoneySmart website.
ASIC has published an article regarding the focus of our regulatory efforts in the face of the COVID-19 challenges, which contains a section for small business and links to other sources which may provide assistance to small business owners. If you are experiencing difficulties in meeting your obligations to ASIC in this time, please consider the information available on our website to apply for relief (conditions apply).
If your small business has been impacted by COVID-19, business.gov.au has published information regarding financial assistance and support for sole traders, companies and employers as well as other information relating to business and COVID-19.
- COVID-19 information
- 20-068MR Guidelines for meeting upcoming AGM and financial reporting requirements
- 20-070MR ASIC recalibrates its regulatory priorities to focus on COVID-19 challenges
- 20-084MR ASIC to provide additional time for unlisted entity financial reports ASIC has extended the lodgement deadline for unlisted entities with balance dates from 31 December 2019 to 31 March 2020, by one month. When lodging online entities may receive a message stating a late fee was incurred, please disregard this messaging. Should entities receive an invoice with a late fee from ASIC, they are asked to contact us online for assistance.
- 20-086MR Details of changes to ASIC regulatory work and priorities in light of COVID-19
- ASIC letters to general and life insurers in the current COVID-19 environment
- ASIC responds to lenders’ request for clarification on lending during COVID-19 pandemic
- Victorian Government’s Business Support Fund information on the Victorian Government’s $500 million Business Support Fund to help small businesses survive the impacts of coronavirus (COVID-19) and keep people in work.
- Australian Government’s COVID-19 Business Support Page the full range of Australian and State Government grant, including financial assistance, eligibility and timing for the new COVID-19 related support for Australian businesses
- JobKeeper Payment Updates and resources from the Australian Taxation Office
- Energy Relief Packages for small business
- Sustainability Victoria Grants for materials,hazardous waste and investment support - packaging
- Five step small business survival plan to help businesses in the current climate
- Business Resilience Mentoring Webinar and Business Resilience Workshops
- Helping with running your business from home
- How to keep your business safe from COVID-19 Cyber Scams