U.S. - Australia Joint Audits: IRS and Australian Taxation Office Confirm Joint Audit Process

Sullivan & Cromwell LLP - February 17, 2011

The United States Internal Revenue Service (the “IRS”) and the Australian Taxation Office (the “ATO”) have taken initial steps toward “joint audits” of taxpayers who normally would be subject to separate audits in each country. At a recent conference of Pacific Rim tax practitioners and government officials, officials of both the IRS and ATO confirmed that a joint audit program has begun and that certain taxpayers have even volunteered for a single audit procedure to be conducted by both IRS and ATO personnel. Government speakers presented the program as likely to produce “more principled” outcomes, improve efficiency, and ultimately to promote more “serious enforcement”.