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Showing posts from July, 2018

How to build your personal brand

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Jennifer Yeo, Director at Evora Legal, shares her insights on the importance of education, achieving success, and developing your personal brand in tax. Invest in your skill set Jennifer says one of the most important things a tax professional can do is focus on their technical expertise at an early stage. “Make sure that you build that knowledge and expertise because that's going to be the foundation and building blocks for how you're going to improve and develop as a tax practitioner in the coming years,” she says.

“The other piece of advice I think is very valuable is that tax practitioners look beyond their area. Even though it's good to be a specialist and it's very important to build that specialisation in many cases, in order to build that it's good to have knowledge of other areas of the business world.

“I think that really adds a lot to your practice and will add to your clients as well and they'll see you as an all-rounded practitioner and that's …

Stamp duty issues in infrastructure transactions: What is land?

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Stamp duty issues arise at virtually every stage of an infrastructure project, but at the heart of nearly every issue is the question of what comprises land, for the purposes of both transfer duty and landholder duty, and what is its value.

Following the abolition of various heads of duty since the introduction of GST, state and territory governments are more dependent than ever on land based taxes. There does not seem to be any sign of this changing in the foreseeable future.

Infrastructure assets, by their nature, often raise difficult and sometimes novel questions about what is land, for both general law purposes and in the expanded sense adopted for duties purposes.

In this paper, presented at the 2018 National Infrastructure Conference in Melbourne, excerpted here, Katrina Parkyn, ATI (King & Wood Mallesons) explores some of the issues that can arise.

What is land and why does it matter?

Each state and territory has its own definition of land which applies for stamp duty p…

Understanding the R&D tax incentive and other grants to support your business

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The R&D tax incentive and state government grants are key ways that funding support is provided to help SMEs realise opportunities and achieve growth objectives.

Proving your clients’ eligibility for this funding can present challenges, as can determining what R&D expenditure is actually eligible.

Tom Gilbert leads AusIndustry’s Brisbane-based R&D Tax Incentive education and integrity assurance activities. At August’s Queensland Tax Forum he will join John Cornick (EY) and Tom Rengers, CTA (ATO) for the combined presentation and Q&A panel session ‘Understanding the R&D tax incentive and other grants to support your business’.

He tells us about some of the issues facing SMEs and their advisers in this post.

“We still find that businesses are uncertain when it comes to accessing innovation-focussed government assistance, and once they have, they naturally want to stay focused on their business and minimise the time spent on related compliance activities.”

Tom …

3 ways studying tax intensively is the perfect fit for you

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Need to study, but don’t have the luxury of time? Step right up.
You may have noticed that some education providers offer intensive, compressed versions of their courses. It’s an alternative that’s becoming increasingly popular because of the time students save with this study mode.

The Tax Institute’s fast-tracked CTA1 Foundation intensive delivery mode provides students with tax fundamentals in just six weeks, as opposed to the usual 14. Students can accelerate their professional growth and can update their knowledge of Australian tax basics in record time.

So why is the intensive study mode right for you?

1. You can study your way

The Australian tax environment is complex and varied. If you’re only familiar with a narrow portion of the tax profession, our CTA1 Foundations tax subject bridges the gap. You can broaden your tax knowledge without an onerous investment of time.

The online learning mode means you have the freedom and flexibility to structure your days the way you want. T…

GST: Emerging trends in capital raising

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Recent years have seen an explosion in the number of individuals and businesses turning to crowdfunding platforms to gain supporters and raise funds for their projects.

Platforms such as kickstarter and GoFundMe have raised billions of dollars for causes ranging from the worthy to the frivolous and even somewhat dubious.

At the same time, interest in cryptocurrencies has grown exponentially. While they remain hugely volatile, investments in bitcoin, ethereum, or the vast range of other crypto-currencies and other digital digital tokens continue to grow, as do the numbers of people raising funds through initial coin offerings (ICO).

Both crowdfunding and cryptocurrency are rapidly evolving and still largely in their infancy, but the ATO is paying increasing attention to these sectors. It is important for those raising funds via these methods to determine whether the money they receive through crowdfunding is income, and whether it is subject to GST.

At September’s National GST Intens…

Time to wean off the (GST-free) milk

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Written by Bob Deutsch, Senior Tax Counsel

The recent release of the Parliamentary Budget Office report into the Australian Tax System, highlights the incredible reliance placed upon individual income tax in Australia.

There is at least one way forward which is both logical and fair.

I refer to the rather perverse arrangement which currently exists, that basic food, health services, and education services are all GST free supplies. As most people are aware, this was part of the compromise deal reached by the former Howard Coalition government back in the late 1990s and is designed to ensure that the lower paid sectors of our community are not disadvantaged. This disadvantage would arise because a significant proportion of the income of lower paid workers available resources are dedicated to the purchase of such supplies. By excluding these supplies from the GST base, the objective of protecting those poorer sectors of the community is achieved.

However, this outcome is only secure…

Transfer Pricing: IP Migration Issues – Dovetail into the DPT

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Transfer pricing continues to be a topical issue for taxpayers and revenue authorities in Australia and around the world. The OECD’s base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) project, and Australia’s implementation of many of its recommendations, highlight the importance of transfer pricing to the compliance and governance frameworks of affected taxpayers.

Intangible property presents particular and unique challenges, since transfer pricing outcomes can incorrectly misprice the presence of intangible property in the Australian sales, distribution or marketing businesses.

At August’s National Transfer Pricing Conference in Sydney, Jonathan Malone, CTA, and Karim Raphael (both PwC), present the session ‘IP Migration Issues – Dovetail into the Diverted Profits Tax’.

Jonathan spoke with us about some of the issues and what to expect from their session.

Jonathan told us “Karim and I will be covering IP transfers, related transfer pricing topics and the interaction of the Diverted Profits Tax…

Employment taxes and technology opportunities for SMEs

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The automation of tax tasks and compliance work continues to pick up pace.

Hayley Lock (KPMG) says “As tax practitioners, we need to lead the way in guiding our clients on 'what's next' in terms of ways to improve the operation of the tax function and deliver value for the rest of the organisation.”

At next month’s Queensland Tax Forum, Hayley presents the session ‘Employment taxes and technology opportunities for SMEs’, where, in addition to providing an update on developments in the employment taxes space, she will cover the broader implications of continuing automation, and take a look at some of the time-saving tools that are available and their use in the SME context.

Hayley tells us about some of the key themes in this post.

“My session will really be an opportunity for attendees to find out "what people are doing" in employment taxes with regards to the use of technology, particularly automation and data analytics. I hope that everyone will walk away wit…

Find out how to get recognised as a top performer in tax

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You know you’re a champion of tax. Here’s how to get the world to see it too.

Our members who hold the Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) post-nominals are internationally recognised as tax professionals who represent the highest standards of expertise, professional integrity and a commitment to being at the forefront of the profession.

Don't take our word for it, hear from some of our CTAs:

Preparing you for tax, wherever you work

Andrew Mills, Second Commissioner – Law Design and Practice, Australian Tax Office, said  the CTA designation is essential to keeping up with a world that continues to change, as he is regularly dealing with new paradigms in his work.

Perhaps you are like Iain Cooper, Group Manager Taxation, Sinclair Knight Merz, who handles a lot of international tax and deals with different jurisdictions.

“I'm in an international network and, to me, it's important to be able to talk to international clients,” says Scott Treatt, Partner, Taxation at Pitcher Partners.

4 reasons why upskilling is vital to your career's health

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Learn. Get recognised. Thrive.

It’s safe to say that change and disruption are the new normal. So, it’s imperative you keep your finger on the pulse and effectively make yourself indispensable as a professional.

In the tax world, upskilling and achieving the Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) designation indicates you've reached the pinnacle of the tax profession. A respected mark of technical excellence and professional integrity, Australian tax professionals who attain the CTA designation are regarded for their leadership and expertise at home and abroad.

Here are four reasons why completing the CTA program can be your career's lifeline.

1. It connects you with like-minded professionals
Networking is the name of the game no matter which industry you work in, and even more so in tax. CTAs belong to an extensive, network of more than 12,000 tax advisers and agents, specialist accountants, lawyers, analysts, policy developers and other practitioners. The Tax Institute’s many events, d…

What does the future hold for the tax profession?

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Steve Healey, National Head of Tax and Private Advisory Services at Grant Thornton, and former President of The Tax Institute, CTA (Life), shares his insights on future trends in the profession.

TTI:What does the future look like for the profession?

SH: A new way of working is needed for all professionals, and I think the reason for that is because of the rapid change that's happening around us. Robotics, artificial intelligence, machine learning; a lot of those things are going to make redundant what we've done historically as professionals. The rise of the peer-to-peer economy I believe is yet to have its full impact, and that in itself is really going to challenge the nature of all professions, including the tax profession.
Education: Prepare yourself for the future of tax by studying with the experts. Don’t miss out – enrolments close Monday, 16 July.

TTI:What are some challenges ahead?

SH: We've got a wonderful opportunity in front of us and we can either take a glass ha…

How to future-proof your career

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Disruption and change is almost the norm in today's marketplace. So how can you make sure your careers is future-proof?

Legislative and regulatory changes, corporate restructures, and digital transformation are just some of the examples of disruption which are becoming more and more prevalent in today's economy. Navigating these variables comes down to one thing – education. Having an indispensable skill set is what will set you apart from the average professional.

Back to you.

You may have just finished your degree and want to work in tax but might not be sure where to start. Or you are already established in the tax industry and are ready to take your career to the next level, and be a cut above the rest.

You could go back to university to complete your masters in tax. But the last thing you want is a super theoretical course with no relevance to your job or career ambitions.

That’s where the world’s most sought after tax credential, the Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) desig…

Tax 2025 - People, the Economy and the Future of Tax

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Grant Wardell-Johnson, CTA, is the Lead Tax Partner of the Economics and Tax Centre at KPMG. Grant is a leading thinker not only on the future of the profession, but also on the future state of society.

In this post we take a look back at the paper he delivered at 2017’s Queensland Tax Forum ‘Tax 2025 - People, the Economy and the Future of Tax’, before looking forward to the keynote he will deliver at next month’s Forum, ‘Tax reform and productivity for growth’.

Grant described the paper as “somewhat speculative”, one that “seeks to look forward through the next eight years, to 2025”.

The paper outlines some key points in relation to eight broad topic areas concerning the future, designed to form a foundation or springboard for thought. The topics covered in the paper are:
How we choose to enframe the future The role that technology will play in all, or virtually all, that we do Our changing values including the role of work and how that will fit within our lives The changing nature…

Dux graduate tells all: how study changed the game

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Sam Loader, the "go-to man" for tax at The Peak Partnership, reveals his experience completing CTA2B Advanced and how it has given him more confidence.
We caught up with Sam Loader; Manager - Business Services at The Peak Partnership in Queensland.
But first a brief background of Sam’s experience.
I'm a Chartered Accountant with 15 years' experience in public practice.  I grew up in Hobart and learnt my tax 'chops' at a couple of firms there.  My dad worked at the ATO so I also had an inside on how the other side worked.  I moved from Tasmania to Queensland six years ago to work as a manager for The Peak Partnership, a mid-size firm in South Brisbane. I've recently moved back to Tasmania and I'm currently working remotely. 
What is the most valuable aspect of CTA2B Advanced that you have taken away?
The broad topics and material covered were very relevant to my job as a manager in a public practice firm.  It helped consolidate my knowledge and has made me…

The GST two decades on – 2018 National GST Intensive

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This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Howard government’s election campaign for A New Tax System.

Two decades on, how does Australia’s GST regime measure up? And what are the challenges confronting the GST as we contend with increasing globalisation and technological disruption?

The Tax Institute’s 2018 National GST Intensive in Sydney promises to provide an engaging setting for GST professionals to consider these important questions. In this post we highlight some of the key issues to be covered at the event.

The interaction of Australian GST and global trade has been a subject of intense scrutiny with the recent extension of the GST to low-value imported consumer goods, as well as services and digital products. 
Already, the world’s biggest online retailer, Amazon, has resisted Australia’s vendor collection model with its decision to stop shipping to Australian customers from its overseas platforms, citing the impracticality of GST collection. At the same time, Australia has r…