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Review of the Tax Practitioners Board

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Written by Stephanie Caredes, CTA

Members will have seen that late last week the discussion paper pertaining to the Review of the Tax Practitioners Board and Tax Agent Services Regime was released for consultation. This review is highly significant for all our members who are subject to regulation by the Board. The discussion paper covers a range of issues, including: Independence, real and perceived, of the Board; Community awareness of the Board; Whether aspects of the registration requirements of practitioners should be changed; Making the Code of Professional Conduct more dynamic; Imposition of sanctions; Possible amendments to the safe harbour; and The relationship between the Board and professional associations such as The Tax Institute. We are interested in members’ views on the discussion paper. It is crucial that members who are likely to be affected by any changes that will emanate from this review should have their say now. Please share your views with us via the Tax Policy …

Reading, interpreting and applying tax treaties – WA International Tax Day

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International tax is an increasingly important and complex area of tax law to Australian based business of multinational organisations.

Our increasingly globalised workforce sees individual tax payer’s arrangements becoming more and more complicated and investors face numerous and shifting regulations across an investment’s lifecycle.

Part of the 2019 International Tax Series, Harry Payne, ATI, Senior Adviser in the Perth office of PwC is presenting a session on how to read, interpret and apply tax treaties.

Providing a technical overview covering recent court cases on treaties and multilateral instruments, Harry will follow up with a practical review of how key Articles vary between key treaties. 
We spoke to him for this post.
“The global tax landscape has changed dramatically in the past decade and more change is proposed.”

“Along with some of the key principles on how Australian Tax Treaties operate and important aspects to consider in the application thereof, my session will look a…

SME Cases Update

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No stranger to The Tax Institute, highly anticipated presenter Robyn Jacobson, will once again be joining us at the VIC 7th Annual Tax Forum
Presenting a practical session on recent SME cases, she will discuss and explore the implications of recent court and tribunal decisions on issues that are of particular relevance to private groups and individuals.

We spoke with Robyn ahead of her presentation.

Covering a range of topics including CGT, Division 7A, superannuation and SMSFs, and the Commissioner’s administrative powers, Robyn says she “will explain the cases in a practical way so that practitioners can understand the cases and apply the principles to their clients.”

Asked about some of the the blind spots she'll be shining a light on, Robyn said “Digesting the relevant and practical issues from large numbers of cases each year can make it difficult for practitioners to keep up and be aware of every implication of tribunal and court decisions.”

“It can also be challenging to kn…

7 tips to stay motivated while you study

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Keeping up to date on current tax legislation and case law is essential for successful tax professionals. Yet, finding the time and motivation to continually learn can sometimes be difficult.   A study found that a whopping 80 to 95 per cent of students procrastinated regularly, particularly when it came to completing assignments and coursework (Psychology of Procrastination). And it can cut across all areas of their lives. They’ll leave important work to the last minute, miss opportunities to secure an early bird discount, cram the night before exams, and file their tax returns late.

In this post, we’ll explain how putting off important tasks is something many of us do, explain how to stay motivated while learning, and provide 7 suggestions so you can say goodbye to procrastination.
1.Procrastination is not a time management issue One of the first steps of getting motivated is to spend some time discovering why you’re procrastinating. What is really behind your self-discipline challe…

Issues arising out of “disruptive” activities and the gig economy

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We have seen a rapid increase in the gig economy, with rideshare services, food delivery and Airtasker, to name a few.

Technology has enabled people to find work, virtually at the click of a button.

What does the gig economy mean when assessing the engagement status of workers?

In her session at the 19th Annual States' Taxation Conference in July, Stefanie Merlino (PwC) covered the evolving gig economy, and considered the challenges and practicalities associated with assessing the already complex payroll tax and contractor provisions.

The paper Stefanie presented at the conference is excerpted in this post.
We are seeing an evolving employee versus contractor debate, which is creating further challenges when assessing the payroll tax implications of these arrangements.

With such rapid growth in business models, including growth of the gig economy and increased businesses entering the industry, it had become apparent that there was a need for Government to address the ever-chan…

Deceased estates – safe harbour from capital gains

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The Commissioner has released Practical Compliance Guideline (PCG) 2019/5 to outline:

1. a safe harbour compliance approach in relation to a sale of property acquired from a deceased estate outside of the two year period; and

2. the factors the Commissioner will consider when deciding whether to exercise the discretion to extend the two year period.

In August's Monthly Tax Update, Frank Hinoporos, CTA, (Hall & Wilcox Lawyers) looks at the key issues for advisers related to this PCG.

Pursuant to section 118-195 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997, where an ownership interest in a principal place of residence passes to an individual beneficiary or trustee of the deceased’s estate within two years of the deceased’s death, any capital gain or loss made on the disposal of the property is disregarded.

Taxpayers must satisfy all five of the conditions specified in the PCG if they wish to have the capital gain or loss disregarded.

The PCG provides a ‘safe harbour’ which, if it ap…

11 things to do before, during and after your performance review

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Performance reviews can be nerve-wracking and many struggle with the process. Here are 11 tips to make sure your next review is productive and rewarding. Supporting employees and providing an atmosphere and structure in which they can strive is one of the most important and challenging parts of building a business. Most organisations use the performance review process as one of the ways to do this.

However, even a year jammed full of achievement can be anxiety-inducing around performance review time.

Remove unwanted surprises and calm your nerves with a solid plan on what to do before, during and after your performance review. 
Before the big day Keep in mind that the process is designed to support you. Start by looking at the bigger picture and your career, not just your current role. This is where having a clear development plan can help map out the course of your career both within and outside your organisation.If it’s your first review at the company, put your anxiety at ease b…