Preparing a payment times report

This page helps you understand what information is required in a payment times report, and how to prepare and submit a report.

On this page:

When to report

Reporting entities must report every 6 months on their payment times and terms to small businesses.

The first reporting period is the first 6 months of an income year, the second reporting period is the remainder of the income year. If there is a transitional income year, a ‘stub’ period of less than 6 months to align to the new income year.

Reporting entities must submit their reports within 3 months after the end of the reporting period. Penalties may apply if reports are submitted late. If more time is needed due to exceptional circumstances or circumstances outside of their control, an entity can apply for an extension of time

What is in a report?

A payment times report includes: 

  • contract payment periods (in calendar days) offered by reporting entities to their small business suppliers
  • payment times, reported as percentage of total number of invoices paid
  • payment times, reported as percentage of total value of invoices paid
  • small business procurement reported as percentage of total value of procurement
  • supply chain finance arrangements
  • comments about payment practices
  • details of the reporting entity’s principal governing body.

How to identify small business procurement

Reporting entities must report their payment times for all payments to small businesses for goods and services procured under a trade credit arrangement. The Payment Times Reporting Small Business Identification (SBI) Tool identifies which suppliers are small businesses for payment times reporting.

Reporting payment terms

Reporting entities must report the standard payment periods offered to small business suppliers providing goods and services. If the standard payment period on offer is a date range or period, this must be reported as the highest number of calendar days in that date range or period. For example, a standard payment period of 30 to 60 days is reported as 60 days. Similarly, a standard payment period of ‘payable within 30 days of the end of the month’ may need to be reported as 61 days.

Reporting payment times

Reporting entities must report payment times based on invoices relating to the supply of a good or service by a small business supplier, and these must be reported based on either the date received, or if this is not easily determined, the issue date of the invoice.

Keeping records 

In addition to invoices, data from contracts, bank statements and other commercial agreements such as supply chain finance agreements may be required to assist with preparing a report. Written records must be kept with details of the methodology and data gathering processes used to prepare a report.

Reporting exceptions

The following transactions are excluded from payment times reporting:

  • payments to other members of the controlling corporation’s group or corporate group
  • payments without trade credit arrangements. For example, payments for rental leases that are pre-paid, travel expenses (including airfares, hotels, taxi, etc.) and restaurant or cafe expenses
  • payments related to employees, through payroll or reimbursements
  • royalty payments to an Australian state or territory government for use of natural resources
  • invoices that do not require payment because they're covered by a credit note, and
  • some credit card payments.
    • There are two circumstances where credit card payments can be removed from reporting:
      • where the transaction is under A$100 (incl. GST)
      • where an internal policy prohibits using that credit card under a trade credit arrangement.
    • The new​​​​​ Information sheet 8: Reporting credit card transactions has more details.

Report comments

Reporting entities must include extra information if necessary for context, or as an explanation for content in a report.

Notifiable events

Reporting entities should report, the following notifiable events in the payment times report covering the period when the event occurred.

  1. A change in accounting period under section 18 or 18A of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936;
  2. A new or changed business name registered on the Business Names Register
  3. Where a member entity’s total annual income is less than $10 million or each of its 2 most recent income years.

If a reporting entity becomes aware of a notifiable event after submitting a payment times report, a revised report should be submitted with details of the notifiable event.

Signing reports and declarations

Payment times reports must be accompanied by a completed Responsible member declaration template signed by a responsible member of the principal governing body who is authorised to sign the payment times report. The declaration may be signed electronically. Electronic signatures need to identify the person signing in a reliable way (see the Electronic Transactions Act 1999). The signature may be an image of the person’s handwritten signature, a digital signature, or their typed name accompanied by the word ‘signed’. 

Submitting a report

Two templates are required to be submitted for a payment times report:

  1. Payment times reporting (PTR) template to input the payment information (a .csv file) and
  2. Responsible member declaration template (a .docx file).

These templates can be accessed from the portal and registered reporting entities can get a prepopulated template with their information by logging into the portal. Reporting entities will need to submit a separate upload for each template (two uploads rather than one).

Guidance for reporting entities

For guidance on the key concepts under the Payment Times Reporting Act 2020 including reporting entities, reporting periods, reportable procurement, and governance reporting read:

For step-by-step guidance on when to prepare a payment times report, the data used to prepare a report, content requirements of reports and the process to submit a report under the Payment Times Reporting Scheme read:

For guidance on completing each part of the payment times reporting templates read:

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