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You Still Have Time To Complete The Census, But You Should Hurry Up

Here's all you need to know about dates, fines, etc.

20/09/2016 3:15 PM AEST | Updated 22/09/2016 5:08 PM AEST
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No need to hide from Census Field Officers just yet.

It's been months since #CensusFail so your excuses for not filling out the Census are running dry.

About 93 percent of Australians have filled it out, so that leaves more than 1.5 million Aussies still needing to complete the survey.

So let's get straight down to business. The Australian Bureau of Statistics have confirmed Friday, September 23 is the final date to complete the Census.

If you don't complete it by Friday, you could eventually be slapped with a fine of up to $180 per day. But there's no need to freak out just yet. Here's what you need to know.

And if you believe you've filled it out, but you keep getting hard copy reminders in the mail we've got that covered too (we'll get to that part later).

Will I be fined $180 per day, from this Friday, if I haven't filled out the Census?

Fining is an absolute last resort, an ABS spokesman told The Huffington Post Australia. The aim is to get you to fill out the Census and contribute to the data collection which helps the Australian Bureau of Statistics provide everyone with a nationwide snapshot of the country.

If you haven't filled it out by Friday, Census Field Officers will visit your household and give you a final reminder letter.

If you don't complete it (out of laziness or refusal) the Australian Statistician has the power under the Census and Statistics Act 1905 to direct you to do so in writing, so you're legally obliged to listen to them (and consequently fill out the Census).

Basically it's a legally binding letter.

If you don't cooperate then the DPP (Director of Public Prosecutions) gets involved. All matters are assessed on "case by case" basis, an ABS spokesman told HuffPost Australia.

The fines of $180 per day then kick in, and they are backdated to the date you received that legally binding letter.

So don't worry yourself sick if you haven't done it. Just do it, to avoid a headache with the DPP.

What do I do if I keep receiving Census reminder notices when I've already completed the Census?

If you've received reminders to complete the Census after you've already completed it, contact the Census Inquiry Service, lodge an online enquiry or speak to a Census Field Officer when they next knock on your door.

Extra reminder notices can end up with you if, for example, you've filled out the paper form of the Census, and the reminder was sent to you before the ABS received your mail.

If you filled out the Census online, the reminder may be intended for someone else in your household or was simply a mix-up. So check in with the Census Inquiry Service or an officer.

But basically, there's no need to stress about those $180 per day fines just yet.

For the Census Inquiry Service click here or call 1300 214 531.

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