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Four housing tax measures progress to Parliament

Housing Tax Measures

Legislation for a number of housing affordability tax measures announced in the federal budget 2017 are being introduced to Parliament today.

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AirBnb – wrong tax outcome?

Air Bnb Uber Bitcoin

We are seeing an evolution of income earning opportunities and waiting for regulators to keep up.

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Are young investors wasting their youth?

Youth Saving Retire

It was George Bernard Shaw who coined the phrase 'youth is wasted on the young'. In Australia today, it seems the young may be wasting their investing youth.

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ATO sending ‘more letters than ever’ on income tax errors

Ato Data Matching

One firm believes the ATO is distributing more letters than ever to taxpayers whose tax returns’ have been flagged as failing their data matching processes.

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Property, unit trusts in ATO’s sights

Ato Scrutinise Property Unit Trust

One big four accounting firm says the ATO has started to zoom in on property development in unit trusts being held in SMSFs and the calculation of valuations for these assets.

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Major Bank Levy Passed

Bank Levy Who Pays

Whilst there has been little publicity in the weeks after the May Federal Budget, the Bank Levy has passed through Parliament and receive Royal Assent, without amendment.

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NSW tops list as ATO reveals billions in lost super

Lost Super

The ATO has revealed its latest figures on lost and unclaimed superannuation accounts, with NSW topping the state list.

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How is your super going, ready for retirement?

How Is Super Going

How realistic are your goals?  Tools on this site will help you monitor how you're going.  Click on the Financial Tools / Calculator button to login, or register, to use this powerful resource.

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Australia’s leading causes of death – ABS

Life Dealth Causes Abs

Not the sort of topic one might normally come across but keeping an eye on the 'big' picture is always good for keeping things in perspective.  Census data from 2006, 2010 and 2015.

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ATO increasing data exchange with international regulators

Data Sharing Around World Ato

Data sharing between tax regulators in different countries is rapidly increasing with the ATO turning in around 30,000 US expats to the IRS just last year according to a US tax lawyer.

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Our ‘hardest’ SMSF tasks

Hardest Smsf Questions

What are the hardest aspects of running your self-managed super fund (SMSF)? There are certainly more and more tasks and professional help my be needed to manage them properly.

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Uber drivers hit for 10% tax

Uber 10percent Tax
In a recent decision, the Federal Court has held that the UberX service supplied by Uber’s drivers constitutes the supply of “taxi travel” for the purposes of GST. 

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Lack of literacy promotes unrealistic goals

Lack Of Financial Literacy

A large proportion of Australians have unrealistic retirement goals.  (NB: There are financial tools on this site that can help as too can a financial planner)

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Taxpayer failed to prove that payments were “loans”

Taxpayer Failed Payment Not Loan

In a recent case, the Full Federal Court has found that several taxpayer companies had not discharged the onus of proving that assessments the Commissioner of Taxation issued to them were excessive. 

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New STP dates confirmed as ATO goes on compliance blitz

Compliance Blitz Ato

The government has confirmed that the Single Touch Payroll will now roll over to small businesses with less than 20 employees, as it seeks to up its efforts to monitor employer payment obligations.

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ATO flags compliance project for FY17/18

Ato Compliance Project 1718

The ATO will be upping its superannuation guarantee (SG) casework by one-third, and is poised for increased audits and penalty notices of up to 200 per cent for non-compliers.

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Items that heat up your depreciation deductions

Rental Depreciation Options

With the winter season upon us, a number of property investors may be thinking of doing nothing more than curling up under a rug in front of a wood fire with a good cup of coffee.

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Government ‘undermines’ tax system in new moves on property expenses

Tax Deduction Legislation Undermining

Newly-released draft legislation, which firms up the 2017 budget move to limit investors’ ability to claim travel expenses and depreciation deductions, will “upset the fundamental basis behind our tax system” according to an accounting body.

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Taxpayer denied deduction for work expenses of $60,000

Taxpayer Denied


The Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) has confirmed that a mechanical engineer with a PhD qualification was not entitled to deductions for various work-related expenses totally approximately $60,000. 

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Overtime meal expenses disallowed because no allowance received

Overtime Meal Allowance


A taxpayer has failed in claiming deductions for overtime meal expenses.

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Key Economic Indicators, 2017


This month's focus is on Australia's Labour Force and Demography.

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Government to shut down salary sacrifice loophole

Salary Sacrific Loophole

The government has announced it will remove a loophole from legislation that allows unscrupulous employers to use their employee’s salary sacrifice contributions to pay their Superannuation Guarantee obligations.

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Crowdfunding legislation gets greenlight

Crowd Funding

Crowdfunding: Alternative funding option for small business.

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ATO heavyweight responds to hacking fears

Ato Digital Forensics

The ATO second commissioner made a statement yesterday clarifying the ATO’s digital forensic capability, saying all investigation is conducted within legislative approval, following media reports that raised concern over “hacking”.

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Checklist – Individuals Tax Returns – 2017

Checklist Individual

It's that time of the year again and a great way to make the tax return process as quick and as productive as possible is to print out the following checklist, fill it in and e-mail, or bring, it to our office.                 Checklist for Individuals – 2017 Tax Returns

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Checklist – Tax time 2017 – Company, Trust & Partnership

Checklist Company 1

Organising all the information needed to complete a tax return as efficiently as possible for these entities can be time consuming and confusing.  The most efficient way to help complete such tax returns is to print the following Checklist, complete it and return it to our office.                   Checklist for Company, Trust and …

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Checklist – Tax time 2017 – Company, Trust & Partnership

Checklist Company

Organising all the information needed to complete a tax return as efficiently as possible for these entities can be time consuming and confusing.  The most efficient way to help complete such tax returns is to print the following Checklist, complete it and return it to our office.                   Checklist for Company, Trust and …

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Checklist – Superannuation Funds – 2017

Checklist Super Funds

Finalising a tax return for a superannuation fund requires a range of information and documentation.  The most efficient way to help complete such tax returns is to print the following Checklist, complete it and return it to our office.                   Checklist for Superannuation Fund Tax Returns – 2017

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ATO to ramp up scrutiny of $20K tax break use

Big Ticket Scrutiny

THINK ABOUT IT – Accountants and SMEs should be wary of entering “dodgy” end-of-year deals simply to utilise the $20,000 instant asset write-off according to one accounting body, with the ATO poised to up its monitoring of the tax concession. 

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‘Bank-like heists’ make way for new wave of cyber crime

Insideous Side

WARNING:  Identity theft is an increasingly popular method of cyber crime as opposed to “bank-like heists” of the past, and SMSF trustees are a prime target, according to a university professor.

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ATO reports on key contraventions for 2016-17

Key Contraventions

WATCH OUT FOR THESE – The ATO has identified the most commonly reported contraventions this financial year and flagged concerns over auditors misreporting illegal early release as loans to members.

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ATO, mid-tiers warn on common expenses myths

Looking Ahead

BE CAREFUL – As the ATO continues to ramp up its focus on scrutinising work-related expense claims this year, two mid-tier firms are urging SMEs to educate themselves on common tax time myths that commonly catch out their clients.

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SMSF trustees told to take action on contributions

Trustees Pay Early

With 30 June 2017 now looming, the SMSF Association has urged trustees looking to make concessional or non-concessional contributions not to delay until the last minute.

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Higher instant asset write-off threshold for small business extended

Instant Asset Write Off

The Government will extend the current instant asset write-off ($20,000 threshold) for small business entities (SBEs) by 12 months to 30 June 2018.

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Australian population figures

Australia Overview

The following information covers Australia's recent population trends and movements.

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New data points to spiralling retirement costs

Cost Of Retirement Increases

Recent figures by the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia reveal that the costs of a modest retirement for both singles and couples have risen by around a third in the past decade.

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Personal insolvency numbers spike across Australia

Persoanl Insolvency Increasing

New statistics from the Australian Financial Security Authority (AFSA) have revealed that business-related personal insolvencies are on the rise across much of the country, with one mid-tier concerned that numbers could continue to rise.

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ATO cracking down on taxable fringe benefits

More Scrutiny Fbt

The ATO is scrutinising organisations’ taxable fringe benefits, with a specific focus on customer loyalty programs, ride-sharing services and utility vehicles, according to a mid-tier.

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Intangible capital improvements made to a pre-CGT asset

Intangible Assets

The Australian Taxation Office has issued an opinion regarding “parts” of an asset which many advisers consider controversial. 

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The three core pillars of this year’s budget

Budget 2017

The following links give you access to the specific issues and topics addressed in the 2017-18 Budget.

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Federal Budget – 2017-18 – Overview

Budget 2017 1

Comprehensive Budget overview : 27 sections covering every aspect of this year's Budget plus 6 Appendix of support information.

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Federal Budget – 2017-18 – Budget documents

Budget 2017 2

For those who like to 'get under the bonnet'

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When does an asset cost less than $20,000? Depreciating assets: composite items

When Does Asset Cost Less Than 20000

Draft Taxation Ruling TR 2017/D1 sets out the Commissioner of Taxation’s views on how to determine if an entire composite item is a depreciating asset or whether its component parts are separate depreciating assets. 

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Asset write off $20,000 ceases shortly

Asset Write Off

Small businesses eligible currently fort the $20,000 immediate write off need to remember this ceases shortly.

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ATO finalises guidance for capped defined income streams

Sg Compliance Crackdown

The ATO has released a finalised version of LCG 2017/D1 which outlines how the defined benefit income cap applies to certain superannuation income stream pensions, and contains more expansive examples, according to one technical expert.

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Warning on trap with trust deed updates

Trust Deed Updating

With many SMSF trustees requiring changes to their trust deed following the reforms to super, an industry lawyer has stressed the importance of reviewing the history of trust deeds.

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2011 Census – what was the make up of your area?

Census Data Your Area

The following link is a handy ABS tool if you want to see the demographic make-up of the area you lived as recorded in the 2011 Census.  2016 Census information starts becoming available from June 2017.

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It’s no secret that Australians have some of the largest houses in the world.

Downsizing Trends

While recent figures show a year on year increase in average floor size of our already large homes, our houses are actually not as big as they used to be.

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ATO defends approach to SG compliance

Sg Compliance Crackdown 1

Following calls for the ATO to overhaul its approach to the issue of unpaid super, the tax office has pointed to the significant resources dedicated to super guarantee compliance and the billions in entitlements that have been transferred to employer accounts.

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Essential steps for SMSF clients before 30 June

Essential Steps

On 1 July 2017, the biggest changes to the super rules in a decade will come into effect. What are the basic steps to tick off with clients before then?

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