Monday, 20 February 2017

SME tax measures are too big to ignore

Ideally, taxpayers should have settled on a structure that will be efficient and effective for their needs before commencing an enterprise. Of course, it rarely works out that way. The tax costs of restructuring a mature business can prove prohibitive, and even when they’re not, questions remain around what the “ideal” structure would look like, and what the advantages are.

Colin Munro, CTA, of Munro Doig
Colin Munro, CTA, a founding director of Perth based-law firm Munro Doig says ‘Often a client’s business may be operating within an unhelpful business structure, or they may want to transfer assets or entities within a broader group’. At the WA SME Tax Measures event on 1 March, Colin will be providing a roadmap to these complex issues. 

A specialist in tax, trusts, estate planning and business structures, Colin says ‘At The Tax Institute’s SME Tax Measures Day, I’ll be discussing how advisers can assist their clients in determining the efficiency of various structures. In addition, through a case-study, I’ll examine the tax costs involved in restructuring a mature business’.

Advisers need to understand common motivations for restructuring, as well as the various concessions available. The SME Tax Measures half-day seminar will provide an in-depth view of the various concessions available to small business, as well as help attendees understand the thresholds and rules surround the term to define exactly what a “small business” is.

Colin is joined by Alyce Galloway, of PKF Lawler and Ross Prosper, CTA, of Bentleys Perth, for a program that will explore grouping provisions, restructuring clients and the concessions clients can access through a mix of practical sessions and case-studies.

The event takes place at City West Receptions, from 9.00am-12.25pm. Find out more here.

Friday, 17 February 2017

Australia's diverted profits tax

by Stephanie Caredes, CTA *


In late November 2016, the government released for consultation the Treasury Laws Amendment (Combating Multinational Tax Avoidance) Bill 2017: Diverted profits tax exposure draft. **

The exposure draft contained the diverted profits tax proposed to be included in Australia’s tax system. Its features include:

  • it will apply to significant global entities with annual global income of $1b or more;
  • it will apply to significant global entities with Australian turnover of more than $25m; and
  • it concerns schemes that involve associated entities in lower tax jurisdictions that do not have the economic substance to justify their income.

Monday, 13 February 2017

Investment in the future

by Matthew Pawson, CTA *


It is my privilege and great honour to serve as President of The Tax Institute in 2017, and I express my thanks to the 2016 National Council for electing me to this position, with the support of the Tasmanian State Council.

I also take this opportunity to thank my predecessor, mentor and friend in the profession, Arthur Athanasiou, for his distinguished service as Immediate Past President. I personally vouch for Arthur’s commitment, tireless efforts and fearless advocacy for the interests of the profession and for the members of this organisation. His leadership has been instrumental in setting The Tax Institute’s current strategic pathway.

My own journey as an Institute member shows that anyone can contribute if they choose, but I won’t use my limited word count to regale readers with my story! Suffice to say I don’t consider myself a tax expert, scholar, prolific speaker or author. However, I strongly believe in the purpose and objectives of The Tax Institute and have been an active volunteer since becoming a member in 2000, shortly after admission to practice in the law. For this, I thank my first employer, Peter Worrall, who 'threw me in the deep end'.

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Why The Tax Institute exists

by Noel Rowland *


Through the year, we tend to focus on day-to-day activities and lose sight of the wider picture. The beginning of a new year, however, is a good time to step back, to plan and to ask big questions.

For The Tax Institute, they’re questions such as: why are we here, what’s our purpose, are we delivering on our vision and mission, are we moving the Institute forward and, if so, for whose benefit?


A tribute to Ken Spence


I was reminded of these questions recently at the retirement dinner for Ken Spence, a legendary figure in Australian tax.

Ken has been a universally respected tax adviser with Ernst & Young, his own firm Shaddick & Spence and, most recently, Greenwoods & Herbert Smith Freehills. He is also a former president of The Tax Institute.

Tuesday, 7 February 2017

Second outage of Tax Agent Portal and ATO online systems - a message to members of The Tax Institute from the President and CEO

Dear Members,

We have received significant feedback from you about the second outage of the Tax Agent Portal and ATO online systems that occurred last week. We are acutely aware of how this has impacted your practices and understand the frustration it has again caused.

We have been in constant communication with the ATO since the outage occurred last Thursday to ensure we have the latest information about their progress towards restoring systems (the majority of which we understand are now back on line). We have seen firsthand the ATO has been working around the clock to restore systems as soon as they could.