BAS vx Bookkeeper

BAS Agent vs Bookkeeper

Written by: Institute of Certified Bookkeepers

You May Be Thinking… What’s the Difference?

Firstly, not all Bookkeepers need to become BAS Agents! A Bookkeeper can also be a BAS Agent! However, if a business requires a contract Bookkeeper to provide a BAS service, they must be a registered BAS Agent. It is only a BAS Agent that can interact with the ATO and your obligations to the ATO, on your behalf, unless they are your employee.

A Bookkeeper and BAS Agent play an integral part in any business. They are engaged with an expectation to keep or assist in keeping accurate and up to date financial records for every month, quarter, and at the end of the financial year.

However, it is imperative to note there is a distinct line between the two roles and responsibilities as detailed below.

Responsibilities of a Bookkeeper

Bookkeeping can look different from business to business, however the most common tasks that a Bookkeeper will generally undertake include:

  • Record financial transactions
  • Bank reconciliations
  • Manage bank feeds
  • Process accounts receivable
  • Process accounts payable
  • Prepare financial reports
  • Work with the business Tax Agent / Accountant to assist with taxation compliance.
  • Work with the Business owner or Business Management on:
    1. Some human resource functions
    2. Some payroll functions*

Responsibilities of a BAS Agent

A registered BAS Agent must have the required qualifications and experience as outlined in the Tax Agent Services Regulations 2009 (TASR). Refer to the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB).

BAS services / Advanced bookkeeping services include but are not limited to:

  • ABN, TFN Business name registration
  • GST, PAYG registration
  • Software installation and training
  • Single Touch Payroll (STP) processing
  • EOFY reporting for STP
  • Superannuation
  • Taxable payments annual report
  • Preparation and lodgement of BAS/IAS – Monthly or Quarterly
  • Complex budgeting
  • Reporting – quarterly review/year-end review
  • Representation in dealing with the Commissioner of Taxation

Note: A BAS Agent can perform all the duties and responsibilities of a Bookkeeper, and a multitude of other functions, and is usually at an Advanced level of bookkeeping knowledge and experience.

Contracted Bookkeepers providing BAS services for a fee, must be registered BAS Agents. Additionally, undertake continuing professional education programs throughout each year.


As a Business Owner, if you are wanting your contract Bookkeeper to complete and undertake BAS services, it is your responsibility that you engage a registered BAS Agent.

If you are unsure if your Bookkeeper is registered, please refer to the TPB website and search the register.

Look for this symbol including the Agent’s registered BAS number.

tax practitioner

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Accountability BAS and Bookkeeping Services provide professional bookkeeping and BAS services to businesses in most Australian states.

What our clients say about us…

“I had the pleasure of being introduced to ABBS through Jo Bacon the WA representative. The professional service.  I have received has been so essential in assisting me with my new business, I am so grateful for the expertise, professionalism and excellent customer service I have experienced.” Marion B

“Thanks to Steve Cocks from ABBS we managed to get all the books up to date and in no time, … and that took the weight off my shoulders so I could focus on developing my business and moving forward in a more organized and structured way, keeping on top of things every month which makes life much easier.”  Elisabeth G

“As an ex-bookkeeper, I’m pretty fussy about how I like things done and I’ve found Caran from ABBS to be a pleasure to work with. She’s competent and efficient and now that I have her helping me with the bookkeeping for my business, I wouldn’t be without her.”  Sandy T

    “As a sole director of a regional law firm,  I’m very conscious of the need to have the proper business support, particularly in the areas of bookkeeping and trust accounting. Since I outsourced those components of my business to ABBS, I feel as if these vital components of my business are in expert hands and I can relax knowing that it is all being done properly , efficiently and legally.  Rob’s expertise with running a business including his insight with managing employees, his ready availability for a discussion at any time on any business matter, his advice and support, have been absolutely invaluable to CastleGate Law.  In addition, Janice from ABBS looks after my trust accounting through Leap with equal efficiency and expertise – she and Rob make a great team for any law firm.  Not only do I feel like I’m sharing the considerable burden of running a law firm, but I feel like in Rob I have someone on my side as a business owner, because of his implicit understanding of business matters, his encouragement and support. For all these reasons I cannot recommend ABBS highly enough as additions to any law firm or business partner. ”  Kate R

If you would like a brief chat or to schedule an online meeting, then call and ask to speak with me.

1300 0 ABBS 0

(1300 022 270)

If you would like to get an instant quote:

To be able to provide you with a relatively accurate quote, we will need you to provide some core information that is used for this purpose only.

We suggest you have the bank statements or closely estimate the number of transactions on all business bank accounts and credit cards for the last three months.

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