ATO debt may impact your credit rating

ATO debt may impact your credit rating

Credit rating scores help lenders decide if they should lend you money.
Did you know your ATO debt may also count towards your credit rating?

What is a credit rating?

A score is given based on an analysis of your credit file.  This helps a lender, such as banks to help them determine whether to lend you money and how much to lend.
How is your credit score calculated?
Credit reporting bureaus (CRBs) collect your financial and personal information and document it on your credit report.  This information is then used to calculate your credit rating score, which includes:

  • Your personal details
  • The type of credit providers you have used (e.g. bank or utility company)
  • The amount of credit you have borrowed
  • The number of credit applications and enquiries you have made
  • Any unpaid or overdue loans or credit
  • Any debt agreements or personal insolvency agreements relating to bankruptcy

Your tax debt

The Government recently advised that it will allow the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) to disclose tax debt information of businesses to CRBs.

What does this mean?

CRBs may include the tax debt information in their credit reports which are available for purchase by parties who wish to use this information to make an informed decision on the credit worthiness of a business.

When can the ATO pass on my information?

While the specific circumstances and exceptions for disclosure will be confirmed through the passage of law in due course, the ATO has advised they will only disclose tax debt information of a business to a CRB if the business meets all of the following criteria:

  • it has an Australian Business Number (ABN), and is not an excluded entity;
  • it has a tax debt, of which at least $10,000 is overdue by more than 90 days; and
  • it is not effectively engaging with the ATO to manage its tax debt.

The ATO will notify a business if they meet the reporting criteria, advising that they have 21 days to respond before their tax debt information is reported to CRBs.

What you need to do.

  • Ensure your tax debit is paid on time
  • If you are having difficulty managing your tax debt, contact Patrick Rowan & Associates (PRA) immediately.


Businesses which are effectively engaging with the ATO to manage their tax debts will not have their tax debt information reported to CRBs. As your registered Tax Agent, we can do this on your behalf.