6 tips to managing ATO payment plans for your overdue BAS

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Sometimes, after a few difficult months, you may find yourself in a bit of trouble with overdue BAS lodgements. But, don’t worry it is not the end of the world, an ATO payment plan can help you out. It is nothing to be ashamed of, the ATO wants your business to be successful and understand that sometimes things can be tough.

The ATO payment plans are designed to help businesses continue running, enabling them to get through tough times and out the other side. It is, however, important that you manage these payments so you can keep going and get through. To help out we have 6 tips for managing your payment plan.

Get the payment plan sorted ASAP

Before we begin with the tips there is one important aspect of payment plans that you should consider, which is timeliness. It is vital that, should you be unable to pay your BAS, that you contact the ATO as soon as possible. While it may not be great to have to reach out to the ATO, you should get it over and done with to avoid any penalties. The ATO is pretty supportive with those who sort these things out before they are investigated.

Our tips to managing your payment plan

When on a payment plan you should follow these 6 tips:

  1. Make sure your first payment is paid on time, that is by the scheduled due date.
  2. Schedule your monthly recurring payments so that you won’t forget and will pay them on time.
  3. Schedule your payments a few days before the due date to give them time to clear.
  4. Each subsequent BAS lodgement is not covered under your payment plans. So, you should contact the ATO if you cannot pay the next BAS in full. If this is the case, lodge your BAS a few days early and contact the ATO as soon as possible.
  5. If you can’t pay an instalment at any time, contact your BAS Agent (Link Books are BAS Agents), and we can help you get an extension on your payment.
  6. Be careful, if you default more than three times it may affect your credit rating. Three defaults will trigger a process where the ATO requests more information on your financial situation and your future ability to pay. In this situation they may contact your bank so they can access funds from your account without your permission.


If you are in this situation it is vital that you ask for help. Talking to a professional bookkeeper to see what you can do to improve your cashflow and turn your business around during a difficult time is normal, and a great decision. Come talk to Link Books and see how our team of bookkeepers can help you.

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