FIRM BLOG

  • Transition to retirement- The transition to retirement (TTR) strategy allows you to access some of your super while you continue to work.  You are able to use the TTR strategy if you are aged 55 to 60. You can use it to supplement your income if you reduce your work hours or boost your super and save on... View Article
  • Tax contributions on your super- How much tax you pay on your super contributions and withdrawals depends on a variety of factors. The process takes into account your total super amount, your age, and the type of contribution or withdrawal you make.  How are super contributions taxed? The money that you contribute to your super account through your employer is... View Article
  • Superfund categories and what they mean- There are four different categories of super funds. These have different primary features and are more applicable to certain people than they are to others.  Retail super funds Anyone can join retail funds. They are mostly run by banks and investment companies: Allow for a wide range of investment options. Financial advisors may recommend this... View Article
  • Small business CGT concessions- Businesses receive four different types of concessions on top of CGT exemptions and rollovers which are available to everyone. These allow businesses to disregard or defer some or all of the capital gains from an active asset which is used in the business. The four additional concessions include: 15-year exemption: If the business has owned... View Article
  • What is an annuity?- An annuity provides guaranteed income for a number of years, or for the rest of your life. It is also known as a lifetime or fixed-term pension.  You can buy an annuity from a super fund or life insurance company. You are able to choose whether you want the payments to last for a fixed... View Article
  • Claiming your tax deductions- There are different types of deductions which individuals can claim to reduce their taxable income.  Work-related expenses In order to claim work-related tax deductions, the expenses must have to meet three criteria. Firstly, all the expenses have to be paid by the individual, without being reimbursed by the employer. Secondly, they must be directly related... View Article
  • Super scams: What to look out for- The market for super funds is extremely competitive.Scammers take advantage of this by promising unrealistic benefits to acquire personal or account details. They are able to use this information to steal your identity or transfer your super to an account they can access.  Scammers can approach you in various ways. You could receive a phone... View Article
  • How are investments taxed?- Investment income needs to be included when conducting tax returns. This includes any income acquired through interest, dividends, rent, managed funds distributions and capital gains. The income yielded from investments is taxed at a marginal tax rate.  Individuals are able to claim deductions for the cost of buying, managing and selling an investment. However, the... View Article
  • PAYG instalments for business and investment income- Pay as you go (PAYG) instalments are payments you can make throughout the year to avoid accumulating a large tax bill to pay at the end of the year. Making these payments is a great way to budget for income tax and keep a healthy cash flow.  To qualify for PAYG instalments, you must earn... View Article
  • First home super saver scheme- The first home super saver (FHSS) allows individuals to save up for their first home in their super fund. The money saved in the super fund is taxed concessionally and therefore, individuals are able to save faster.  Individuals can make voluntary concessional (before-tax) or voluntary non-concessional (after-tax) contributions into their super fund. They can then... View Article
  • Consolidating your super- Consolidating your super can save you time and money. Consolidating your super means that rather than having multiple different accounts, all your super is in one account.  Why you should consolidate your super: Choosing to consolidate your super means that you will no longer be paying fees to multiple super funds.  There is also less... View Article
  • Tax relief for individuals- The Federal Budget for 2020 announced personal and business tax relief through various tax cuts. The legislation was approved by parliament meaning that individuals and businesses will be paying less tax, and have more money to invest and spend into the economy.  For individuals, the government has brought forward tax cuts which were initially planned... View Article
  • What property investors need to look out for- All investments have an aspect of risk and property investment is no different. How comfortable you are with the risk is generally an indication of your financial situation, age and expertise. There are a few common areas that pose risks to properties that investors should be aware of before entering into the market. Market risk... View Article
  • Choosing a super funds- Choosing a super fund requires taking multiple things into consideration. Such as its performance, the fees you will be required to pay, details of the insurance, and different investment options that are available.  Performance Performance is one of the most important things to consider when choosing a super fund. Take a look at how the... View Article
  • Basics of fringe benefits tax- What are fringe benefits? Employees may opt to make an agreement with their employers that provides them with fringe benefit ‘payments’ in a form other than salary or wages.  There are various types of fringe benefits: Employees being able to use work car for private use Discounted loans Paying an employee’s gym membership Providing entertainment... View Article
  • Changes to the super system- The Budget seeks to address various shortcomings in the superannuation system Unintended multiple accounts One of the consequences of changing employers is the creation of multiple accounts. These result in unnecessary fees, and reduce retirement savings. Under the Budget, the proposal is that individual’s super is ‘stapled’ to them. Stapling means that the individual keeps... View Article
  • Insolvency reforms to support small business- The government recognises that despite support to get through the COVID-19 outbreak, not all businesses are going to remain viable. Many small businesses will have significantly increased levels of debt in order to remain in business during the COVID-19 pandemic. The government is introducing a number of permanent and temporary measures to expand the availability... View Article
  • Upskilling Australia- The Budget highlights the government’s commitment to getting people back in jobs and upskilling Australians. The JobTrainer Fund which falls under the JobMaker Plan will support up to 340,700 free or low-fee training places in areas needed to help upskill and retrain job seekers and young people.  The government will provide exemptions for employer-provided retraining... View Article
  • Lower taxes for businesses and individuals- The Budget seeks to promote tax reform and simplification in an effort to support business investment and help reduce the personal income tax burden.  Business Businesses are encouraged to invest with the introduction of temporary full expensing. Businesses with turnover up to $5 billion will be able to deduct the full cost of eligible depreciable... View Article
  • JobMaker Hiring Credit- Job losses have been extensive during the COVID-19 pandemic and the JobMaker Hiring Credit will give businesses incentives to take on additional employees aged between 16 and 35 years old.  Eligible employers will receive $200 a week for each new employee aged between 16 and 29. For new eligible employees aged 30 to 35, they’ll... View Article
  • Insurance for your super- Most super funds offer insurance as part of their super plan. It is important to be aware of what types of insurance you are covered by through your super fund to help you determine if you need extra cover outside your super and if you have adequate support in the event that you cannot work.... View Article
  • What is Salary Sacrificing for Super- One of the most effective ways to add to your super balance is through salary sacrifice. Salary sacrifice involves the employee agreeing to exchange a portion of their salary (before tax) for an increase in superannuation contribution by their employer.  Contributions made through salary sacrifice are classified as employer contributions, not employee contributions. These are... View Article
  • Tax-effective investment options- Determining where to invest requires multiple factors to be taken into consideration. One such factor may be tax efficiency. The tax charged on income from a tax-effective investment is less than the individual’s marginal tax rate.  Superannuation The government provides incentives to save through Super, which make it one of the most tax-effective investments. Contributing... View Article
  • Amnesty means that 24,000 businesses own up to underpaying Aussies superannuation- An amnesty scheme which ended earlier this month has caused around 24,000 businesses to admit to underpayment of their worker’s super. A total of 588 million dollars will be distributed to almost 400,00 individuals.  The scheme, which covered payments from the introduction of super in 1992, gave employers the opportunity to come clean without any... View Article
  • Income Tax cuts in Federal Budget Benefiting high-income earners- In its efforts to boost the economy, the Federal Government is considering bringing the planned income tax cuts forward. The intention behind these cuts is to boost the economy by boosting consumption.  Initially, income tax cuts were to take place in three stages, the first of which has already been rolled out. The following stages... View Article
  • What to consider when consolidating your super- The ATO reported that 45% of working Australians were not aware that they had multiple super accounts in 2016. Having multiple super accounts is particularly common for individuals who have had more than one job. If this is you, it is important to identify and manage your super accounts because having more than one can... View Article
  • Extending relief with JobKeeper 2.1 changes- The Government has introduced additional changes to JobKeeper to help more businesses qualify for the relief payments. One of the key changes was moving the relevant date of employment for an eligible employee from 1 March to 1 July 2020, to extend employee eligibility. This allows those who were full time employees on or before... View Article
  • What is an SMSF auditor and what do they do?- Self-managed super fund (SMSF) trustees are required to appoint an ATO-approved SMSF auditor no later than 45 days before lodging their SMSF annual return. An SMSF auditor is a professional who assesses your fund’s compliance with superannuation law and examines your fund’s financial statements. SMSF auditor eligible requirements Your SMSF auditor must be: Independent. SMSF... View Article
  • CGT rollover when transferring assets in a divorce- Transferring the ownership of assets from one party to another may attract CGT. However, in the event that a change in ownership occurs due to the breakdown of a relationship, you may be eligible for a rollover of the asset. A rollover allows taxpayers to defer or disregard a capital gain or loss that would... View Article
  • What to consider when developing a sales strategy plan- A successful sales strategy plan will provide your business with clear priorities, goals, and outcomes that can help you increase sales. Outline your mission and goals What’s your business’ mission statement? What are the goals and objectives that will help you achieve this? Your mission statement should define what your business stands for and what... View Article
  • Buying property through your SMSF- Using SMSFs to buy property has become increasingly popular among Australians in recent years, particularly since it became possible for SMSFs to borrow money to fund a direct property purchase. Residential property A residential property owned by an SMSF has some limitations as to who it can be leased to. To buy property through your... View Article
  • What is a TPAR and do you need to lodge one?- The Taxable Payments Annual Report (TPAR) is an industry-specific report through which businesses inform the ATO of the total payments made to contractors for services in that financial year. This information is then used by the ATO to match the contractors’ income declarations to improve their compliance efforts. A TPAR is generally required by businesses... View Article
  • How to select a default fund for your business- Business owners might be required to select a default fund for employees when they do not want to nominate their own superannuation funds. Funds should meet specific requirements that are stated as per super law, so it is important to select a complying fund. However, there are other factors that you may have to think... View Article
  • Applying for small business income tax concessions- Businesses looking to save on tax for the financial year may consider applying for income tax concessions. Businesses classified as a small business entity are eligible for income tax concessions. Since 1 July 2016, businesses are considered small business entities in the case that they: are a sole trader, partnership or trust, operate as a... View Article
  • How to avoid SMSF disputes- Self-managed super funds (SMSF) can be vulnerable to disputes, especially when family members are involved. SMSF disputes may be caused by a number of reasons such as relationship breakdowns, (common in funds where parents and siblings are in a member and trustee relationship) and fundamental differences in opinions. Other common triggers for SMSF disputes include:... View Article
  • What types of income do you need to include in your business’ tax return?- Due to changing economic circumstances, businesses may be receiving income from sources they have never received from, and may be unaware of their tax implications. In the event that they are listed below, you will need to include them in your business’ tax return. Government paymentsDue to COVID-19, many government grants and payments have been... View Article
  • What circumstances permit early access to your super?- Early access to your superannuation is permitted under a few limited circumstances outlined by the ATO. In the case that you are experiencing financial struggle and would like to withdraw from your super, be aware of the particular circumstances that will allow you to do so. Compassionate grounds: Withdrawing super on compassionate grounds is permitted... View Article
  • Common tax mistakes that businesses make- Meeting tax obligations as a business owner can be stressful and potentially expensive if done wrong. Certain mistakes warrant severe action, so you can expect the ATO to take a closer look at them if you’ve failed to identify these errors before lodging tax returns for your business. Most mistakes made with regards to tax... View Article
  • Common tax mistakes that businesses make- Meeting tax obligations as a business owner can be stressful and potentially expensive if done wrong. Certain mistakes warrant severe action, so you can expect the ATO to take a closer look at them if you’ve failed to identify these errors before lodging tax returns for your business. Most mistakes made with regards to tax... View Article
  • Tax-deductible super contributions- Individuals may be able to claim tax deductions for personal superannuation contributions they make. Personal super contributions are made after-tax, not to be confused with the pre-tax contributions made by employers. This includes contributions made using inheritance money, savings, proceeds from the sale of assets, or from a bank account directly into a super fund.... View Article
  • Amending fringe benefits tax return and updated exemptions- The Government has updated fringe benefits tax (FBT) exemptions to include travel in ride-sourcing vehicles under the existing taxi travel exemption. In the case that your business has been providing employees with such travel options and would like to amend your FBT returns to include the new exemption, the ATO has also updated 2020 FBT... View Article
  • Tax on super death benefits for dependants vs non-dependants- A super death benefit is the super paid after a person’s death, usually to a nominated beneficiary. These benefits are subject to different tax treatments, depending on whether the beneficiaries are dependant or non-dependant. Superannuation death benefits will generally be received tax-free by tax dependants, who are considered to be: A child of the deceased... View Article
  • Are you eligible for the small business income tax offset?- The small business income tax offset can be used to reduce the tax you pay by up to $1,000 a year. Also known as the unincorporated small business tax discount, the offset is worked out on the proportion of tax payable on your business income. The rate of offset is 13% for the 2020-21 financial... View Article
  • Do you need to lodge a transfer balance account report?- Self-managed super funds (SMSF) may be required to lodge a transfer balance account (TBA) report by 28 July 2020 in the case of a TBA event. A TBA report will need to be lodged with the ATO in the event that both of the following apply: A TBA event occurred in a member’s SMSF between... View Article
  • COVID-19 factors to remember when filing your tax return- The end of the financial year has rolled around again, but this time, COVID-19 may affect the way you fill out your tax return. The ATO has released a range of methods to make tax time easier for businesses and individuals experiencing unprecedented circumstances. How JobKeeper will affect tax returns Sole traders receiving JobKeeper payments... View Article
  • Carrying on a business in an SMSF- Self-managed super funds can carry on a business providing the business is allowed under the trust deed and operated for the sole purpose of providing retirement benefits for fund members. Carrying on a business through an SMSF does have restrictions that other businesses do not have, such as entering into credit arrangements or having overdrafts.... View Article
  • Cars and taxes for 2020-21 financial year- New car threshold amounts will be implemented from 1 July 2020. Understanding the new thresholds and how they may affect your small business operations and vehicle usage will be important in preparing you for the financial year ahead. Income tax: There is an upper limit on the cost you use to work out the depreciation... View Article
  • How to transfer a business property into your SMSF- Employers with a self-managed super fund (SMSF) looking to protect their business assets can consider transferring their business real property into their SMSF. Transferring business property into your SMSF is useful to protect your assets in the event of your business failing or facing litigation. It is possible for SMSF members to transfer business real... View Article
  • Landlord tax obligations under COVID-19 circumstances- Property investors may have a number of tenants that have temporarily paused their rent payments or are not paying the full amount of rent owed due to being impacted by COVID-19. Regardless of rental income changes, landlords are still entitled to claim deductions on rental property expenses if they are still incurring regular rental property... View Article
  • Divorce and splitting your SMSF assets- Running an SMSF under regular circumstances comes with enough compliance obligations as it is. Adding divorce or separation into the equation can raise even more legal and tax issues that need to be addressed. The breakdown of your relationship does not absolve you from your responsibilities as an SMSF trustee; you are still expected to... View Article
  • Claiming self-education expense deductions- Individuals upskilling and educating themselves during these down times may be eligible to claim a deduction for their self-education expenses. The deductions apply to self-education activities that are directly related to an individual’s work as an employee. In the case that individuals are looking to claim self-education expenses based on a course’s relation to their... View Article
  • SMSF property investment regulations to keep in mind- Property is a common investment option for SMSFs, however, the ATO has a number of regulations SMSF owners need to be wary of. The ATO is particularly concerned with those using SMSF assets to invest in property in a way that is detrimental to retirement purposes. To ensure you do not breach provisions of the... View Article
  • Closely held payees exemption to be extended- Employers with 19 or fewer employees are temporarily exempt from reporting ‘closely held (related) payees’ through Single Touch Payroll enabled software. The exemption deadline has been extended from 1 July 2020 to 1 July 2021 as part of the ATO’s response to the COVID-19 situation. A closely held payee is an individual directly related to... View Article
  • Spouse contributions – when are you eligible for a tax offset?- Contributions made on behalf of your spouse to a complying superannuation fund or a retirement savings account (RSA) may be eligible for a tax offset. The 2019/2020 tax rules allow you to claim an 18% tax offset on super contributions up to $3,000 on behalf of your spouse. While you are able to contribute more... View Article
  • What you need to know about fringe benefits tax- A fringe benefits tax (FBT) is a tax paid on benefits provided to employees (usually non-cash). FBT is calculated based on the gross taxable value of benefits employers provide to their employees. Employees must lodge their return and pay the total FBT amount they owe for the previous FBT year. Due to COVID-19, the FBT... View Article
  • Your current employer superannuation obligations- Paying your employees superannuation is an integral part of being an employer. Superannuation provides income for your workers in retirement and it is your legal obligation to make sure you are paying your eligible employees the right amount, on time, to the right place and also in the right way. The ATO has also introduced... View Article
  • Tax implications for workers with COVID-19 mobility restrictions- Employees who are not living or working in their regular location due to COVID-19 mobility restrictions need to be aware of the tax implications that apply to their situation. Individuals who ordinarily work and live in Australia but are temporarily overseas due to COVID-19 restrictions will not experience any changes to their Australian tax obligations.... View Article
  • What happens if your SMSF is non compliant?- While there are benefits to running an SMSF, they do not come without their compliance responsibilities. This includes lodging your fund’s annual return on time, attending to reporting obligations, and having an investment strategy. SMSFs who do not meet their obligations are subject to penalties by the ATO through the following measures. Education direction An... View Article
  • JobKeeper GST turnover test released- The ATO has published a ruling on the decline in turnover test for businesses applying for the JobKeeper scheme as part of the Coronavirus Economic Response Package (Payments and Benefits) Rules 2020. This turnover test requires businesses to calculate their ‘current GST turnover’ and ‘projected GST turnover’, subject to modifications to the definitions outlined in... View Article
  • Things to know about the First Home Super Saver Scheme- Individuals looking to buy their first home may claim up to $30,000 of their super contributions through the First Home Super Saver (FHSS) Scheme, which aims to reduce pressure on housing affordability. The scheme allows first home buyers to save money within their superannuation fund and accumulate faster savings with the concessional tax treatment of... View Article
  • What you need to know about lodgement deferral dates- Due to COVID-19 and unforeseen financial circumstances, the ATO has announced a series of lodgement deferral dates available for tax returns, fringe benefits tax returns, monthly and quarterly BAS, annual GST returns, PAYG summary annual reports and taxable payment annual reports. Lodgement deferrals extend the due date for lodgement of a document without incurring a... View Article
  • Assistance available for SMSFs and their members- The Government’s economic response to coronavirus will provide SMSFs and their members with additional support, including reducing minimum drawdown rates and early release of superannuation. The minimum annual payment required for account-based pensions and annuities has been reduced in an initiative to assist retirees. For the 2019-20 and 2020-21 financial years, the minimum annual payment... View Article
  • FBT exemptions to keep in mind during the COVID-19 pandemic- In emergency situations like the COVID-19 pandemic, there are certain benefits you can provide your employees or their associates which may be exempt from fringe benefits tax (FBT). The fringe benefits tax is a tax which employers must pay on certain benefits they provide for their employees, their employees’ families and associates. However, with emergency... View Article
  • Managing longevity risk and your superannuation- Longevity risk is a common and important factor to consider when planning for your retirement funds. Longevity risk refers to the risk of outliving your savings and arises as people enter retirement, and in most cases, with a fixed amount of money to use during their retirement years. Managing your longevity risk is important because... View Article
  • ATO introduces new working from home deduction scheme- COVID-19 is forcing many businesses to work from home, meaning that you now have to pay for expenses such as heating and lighting that were previously covered by employers. The ATO has introduced a new ‘shortcut method,’ where you can claim additional running expenses at a rate of 80 cents for each hour you work... View Article
  • Expert advice on early superannuation access as a result of COVID-19- Under the coronavirus stimulus package released and revised by the Australian Federal Government on 22 March 2020, individuals in financial trouble due to the negative economic impacts of COVID-19 will be able to access their superannuation funds early. However, while the option is available, it is recommended that individuals only consider withdrawing from their super... View Article
  • Setting up your myGovID- If you haven’t set up your myGovID yet, you need to do it before you can lodge your next business activity statement (BAS). AUSkey, including Manage ABN Connections, will be replaced by the ATO’s myGovID and Relationship Authorisation Manager (RAM) from 27 March 2020. After this change, you will no longer be able to access... View Article
  • Investing in shares vs property in SMSFs- Shares and property are two popular investment options for those with a self-managed super fund (SMSF). However, they both have very different attributes and choosing the one that will achieve the best outcome for an SMSF depends on your personal goals and situation. While the price of shares can vary drastically, property is a relatively... View Article
  • CGT exemptions have been scrapped. What does that mean for you?- Are you an Australian living or working overseas with a family home in Australia? Or you know someone who is? If so, be sure to consider the impacts of the capital gains tax (CGT) on you from 30 June 2020. Since 1985, the exemption of Australian expatriates from the CGT tax has been available for... View Article
  • Becoming socially conscious of where you super invest- Whether you are a newcomer to the workforce or have been working full time for 30 years, you must have come across the concept of superannuation. Chances are, you’ve already been steadily building your retirement funds in one of the 500 Australian superannuation funds but are still unfamiliar with how exactly your super is being... View Article
  • What’s tax-deductible for home businesses?- Running your business from home can have great benefits, such as being able to spend more time with your family, not having to travel, and deciding your work hours. To make the most out of your home business experience, it is important to be aware of what tax deductions you can claim. If your home... View Article
  • You can now opt-out of super guarantee as a high income earner- If you’ve unintentionally been going over your superannuation concessional contributions cap in past years, you may not have to worry about it from now on. As of 1 January 2020, eligible individuals with multiple jobs can apply to opt-out of receiving super guarantee (SG) from some of their employers. You may be eligible to apply... View Article
  • Taking a super pension- Once you have met your preservation age (between 55 and 60 depending on when you were born), you can choose to take a super pension. There are six main types of super pension: Account-based pension: this is the most common type of pension. It is a regular income stream bought with money from your super... View Article
  • Do you have to pay tax on super death benefits?- When someone dies, their superannuation usually gets transferred to their beneficiary as superannuation death benefits. Depending on who the beneficiary is, the benefits may be taxed in some circumstances. If you are a beneficiary, the amount of tax you pay depends on factors such as: If the benefit is paid as a lump sum or... View Article
  • When a trustee goes bankrupt…- SMSF members need to be aware of the rules that govern their fund, including what to do when one member becomes bankrupt. A requirement of an SMSF is that each individual trustee of the SMSF must be a member of the SMSF. In the case of corporate trustees, every member must be a director. This... View Article
  • Can you claim deductions for employee training?- Employees of a small business may need to develop their expertise or skills in a particular area to better perform their duties. While training courses like seminars and one-day intensives can be a worthwhile investment, there are still a few things employers should consider from a tax point of view. Employers can generally claim deductions... View Article
  • New SMSF alert system- The ATO has introduced a new method of updating SMSF trustees of changes to their fund. From 3 February 2020, email and/or text message alert will be sent out when there are changes in the SMSF, such as; Financial institution account details. Electronic service address (ESA). Authorised contact. Members. If you receive an alert and... View Article
  • Tax implications of leasing commercial premises- Leasing commercial premises, such as an office building, hotels or stores have their own struggles compared to being a residential landlord. Making the correct tax payment and knowing what you can and can’t claim is key in being a successful commercial landlord. When leasing out a commercial property, you must include the full amount of... View Article
  • What happens to your super in a divorce? - Divorce or separation can be emotionally draining and stressful as it is, but the legal and financial responsibilities you also need to think about add an extra burden to dealing with the spit. One key area that needs to be considered to protect your financial future is your superannuation and what happens to it after... View Article
  • Restoring damaged tax records after a natural disaster- In the event that your records have been damaged or destroyed in a natural disaster, such as bushfires, there are a number of ways you can reconstruct them. The ATO is able to help with reconstruction in the event tax records have been lost or damaged. Where the tax records are lost or destroyed as... View Article
  • Updates to the unclaimed superannuation money protocol- The Superannuation (Unclaimed Money and Lost Members) Act 1999 (SUMLMA), more commonly known as the unclaimed superannuation money protocol, has been updated recently to provide a clearer structure going forward. SUMLMA provides guidance on in relation to unclaimed money, lost member accounts, superannuation accounts of former temporary residents and their associated reporting and payment obligations.... View Article
  • What are franking credits?- Franking credits are a kind of tax credit that allows Australian companies to pass on the tax paid at a company level to shareholders. Franking credits can reduce the income tax paid on dividends or potentially be received as a tax refund. Where a company distributes fully franked dividends (and those dividends are included in... View Article
  • SMSF schemes for illegal access of super- The ATO has issued a warning for Australians to be aware of scheme promoters that promise to allow you to withdraw your superannuation early, and illegally. Individuals can legally withdraw super when they turn 65, even when they haven’t retired, are at their preservation age and retire, or under the transition to retirement rules while... View Article
  • Tax implications of buying a holiday home- Buying a holiday house can seem appealing, whether it’s to rent out for income, for your own holidays or both. However, it is important to be aware of the different tax implications for how you choose to use your holiday house. If you own a holiday house and do not rent it out, you cannot... View Article
  • Removal of the main residence exemption for non-residents- The government has changed capital gains tax (CGT) rules for foreign residents under the Treasury Laws Amendment (Reducing Pressure on Housing Affordability Measures) Bill 2019, which was granted assent on 12 December 2019. The law change no longer allows foreign residents to claim the CGT main residence exemption, which will impact people who are overseas... View Article
  • Do you have insurance with your super?- Most super funds offer insurance as part of their super plan. It is important to be aware of what types of insurance you are covered by through your super fund to help you determine if you need extra cover outside your super and if you have adequate support in the event that you cannot work.... View Article
  • Proposed measures to increase retirement savings - Currently, people aged 65 to 74 can only make voluntary superannuation contributions if they meet the ‘work test.’ This means they must report themselves to be working a minimum of 40 hours over a 30 day period within the financial year to qualify. The government has proposed that from 1 July 2020, individuals aged 65... View Article
  • Tax on gifts and donations- Individuals can claim tax deductions when giving gifts or donations to organisations that have the status of deductible gift recipients (DGR). To be eligible to claim a tax deduction for a gift, the ATO stipulates that it must meet the following four conditions: The gift must “truly be a gift”; that is, a voluntary transfer... View Article
  • 2019 Updates to the Pension Loan Scheme - Changes have been made to the Pension Loan Scheme (PLS) under the federal government that came into effect 1 July 2019. The updates aimed to improve the previous scheme and help more retirees boost their retirement income and pay for extra expenses such as home care. The key features of the new Pension Loan Scheme... View Article
  • Paying tax on term deposits- The interest you earn from term deposits is subject to tax, just like your regular income. You have to declare investment income on your tax return, including interest in the year it was credited or received. The amount of tax you need to pay depends on the amount of interest you earn on your term... View Article
  • Does your SMSF meet the sole purpose test?- If you have a self-managed super fund (SMSF), then you need to meet the sole purpose test to be eligible for the tax concessions that are normally available to super funds. The sole purpose test aims to ensure that SMSFs are maintained for the purpose of providing benefits to members upon retirement or for beneficiaries... View Article
  • Making NRAS claims- The national rental affordability scheme (NRAS) started on 1 July 2008, encouraging large-scale investment in affordable housing. It offers tax and cash incentives to providers of new dwellings for 10 years, granted they are rented to low and moderate income households at 20% below market rates. Though the NRAS is no longer taking new investments,... View Article
  • Super when you’re self-employed - If you are a sole trader, or in a partnership, then you are not obligated to make super guarantee (SG) payments for yourself. However, you should still consider making personal contributions to super to help you save for retirement. Your methods of contributing to super can depend on how you pay yourself. For example, if... View Article
  • Introducing ASFP- Plans are underway to carry out a system change during the December closure of the ATO, to introduce Activity statement financial processing (ASFP). This change will move the majority of taxpayer financial information into one accounting system that will have multiple accounts. ASFP will shift activity statement and franking deficit tax accounts from the current... View Article
  • Proactive consolidation with ILBAs- Inactive low-balance accounts (ILBAs) are a new category account that needs to be reported and paid to the ATO. This was introduced in the Treasury Law Amendment (Protect Your Superannuation Package) Bill 2019 that came into effect on 1 July 2019 after first being announced in the 2018-19 Federal Budget. ILBAs are designed to protect... View Article
  • Time limit on GST refunds- Small businesses entitled to refunds of GST may not be aware of the four-year time limit on claiming those refunds. Your entitlement to a GST credit ends four years from the due date of the earliest activity statement in which you could have claimed it. GST refunds are claimed under the indirect tax concession scheme... View Article
  • Commutation authorities for SMSFs- Commutation authorities are issued by the ATO when a member of a SMSF has exceeded their transfer balance cap. A commutation authority will be issued after the member has received an excess transfer balance determination alerting them they have passed the cap. The transfer balance cap is currently $1.6 million and is applied to the... View Article
  • Limiting tax deductions for holding vacant land- On the 28 October 2019, The Treasury Laws Amendment (2019 Tax Integrity and Other Measures No.1) Bill 2019 received royal assent. The new tax law creates limitations for deductions related to the expenses of holding vacant land from 1 July 2019. This is likely to affect those who acquire land for investment purposes and begin... View Article
  • Travels with my SMSF- Travelling overseas for an extended period of time is an exciting adventure and a chance to have a break. However, SMSFs do not take a break when you do, which is why it is important to ensure everything remains in line while you are away. SMSFs that breach the residency rules are taxed at the... View Article
  • Amendment to Housing Affordability Measures introduced- The Treasury Laws Amendment (Reducing Pressure on Housing Affordability Measures) Bill 2019 was re-introduced to parliament on 23 October 2019. This comes after it was first announced in the 2017-18 Federal Budget. The amendment introduces a new system where the government will provide up to an additional 10% capital gains tax (CGT) discount for resident... View Article