Showing posts from February, 2019

SMSFs, property, LRBA, international issues, and more: The road ahead

One year on from the introduction of the most significant superannuation reforms in over a decade, practitioners working at the coalface are experiencing a diverse range of compliance and planning issues which, only now are coming to light.
In his workshop ‘SMSFs, property & LRBA’, at the upcoming at the WA Superannuation Intensive, Phil Broderick, CTA (Sladen Legal) will cover the ins and outs of property in SMSFs.
Looking at everything involved in getting property into an SMSF, issues with holding a property once it is an SMSF, and finally how to take a property out of the SMSF, Phil explains ‘Of course, I’ll be examining all of the tax issues that come up along the way - both Federal and State. Delegates should leave with a good knowledge of the issues relating to SMSFs and property investments; which will leave them in good stead for investing in, or dealing with, property in an SMSF.’
Phil is a principal at Sladen Legal in Melbourne and is heavily involved in various superannu…

How Uber ruined your client expectations

Sponsored content from our business partner, Receipt Bank.

Uber has transformed the way we travel, offering speed, visibility and control. Download one app and within minutes, a car arrives at your door. What’s more, you have full visibility of when and where it will arrive. You have complete control over your destination, can split the fare with other co-riders, and know when you will arrive - give or take a few minutes.
That expectation of convenience is spreading through everything, from Netflix and entertainment to Deliveroo and eating.
Tax authorities are also responding to changing client expectations. Clients now expect to manage their businesses from their phones and work on the go. 84% of Australian SMBS have a smartphone, and they expect their data to go with them. If your firm does not adapt, you risk getting left behind.
So how do you evolve your service for the Uber-generation and bring it into the now? 
You need three things in place to build a stand-out service from offer…

Outbound Infrastructure Investment : Key Issues in Structuring Outbound Investments

Australia’s infrastructure deficit, stable legal system and AAA credit rating has led to a focus on Australian infrastructure investment opportunities. This has naturally led to increasing competition for Australian assets and eye-watering multiples. In turn, this has encouraged Australian infrastructure investors to consider the merits of seeking higher returns from offshore infrastructure assets.

The question is whether the Australian tax system adequately facilitates investment in offshore infrastructure.

In his paper, presented at last year’s National Infrastructure Conference, Edward Consett, ATI, (EY) presented the paper ‘Outbound Infrastructure Investment – Key Issues in Structuring Outbound Investments’, where he looked at common offshore infrastructure investment structures and consequences for Australian investors. His paper is excerpted in this post.

Speaking to us before the Conference, Edward said “In theory, investing offshore from Australia should be relatively strai…

3 traits that make a great tax professional

Tax expert Andy Milidoni, CTA, reveals 3 traits that define a successful tax professional. He also shares his tips on how to keep growing as a tax expert.
Any tax practitioner knows that working in tax can be likened to professional problem-solving. On a day-to-day basis, you are working with clients and sifting through legislation to produce the best possible advice you can.
But what distinguishes the average tax practitioner from the rest?
Andy Milidoni, CTA, Partner at Johnson, Winter & Slattery, and lecturer at The Tax Institute sheds some light on the 3 traits that make a great tax professional and what it takes to write top quality advice.
“I have a broad tax practice, so I do both direct and indirect, and international, and while that can be very challenging, it's also very rewarding,” he says.
“Being a tax practitioner requires a lot of hard work, not only in keeping up to date with a lot of the changes in tax law across a very broad range of tax areas.
“It also requires a …

Family law’s unintended tax implications – 2019 Barossa Convention

Relationship breakdowns are challenging even before the tax implications are considered, but proper planning can help avoid and reduce the unintentional trigger of tax liabilities.

At this year’s Barossa Convention, local and credited speaker Briony Hutchens, CTA from DW Fox Tucker will present a technical session on ‘Family Law’ which will focus on the complications that can be encountered from a tax perspective when dealing with a relationship breakdown.
We spoke to Briony about what to expect from her session. She said attendees will ‘understand that achieving the financial outcomes desired by parties in a property settlement following a relationship breakdown can be complicated and costly from a tax perspective but with proper planning the tax implications can be minimised’.
Briony goes on to explain that the potential blind spot and trap in this area is a ‘wide discretion under family law to look through structures when considering property settlements following a relationship b…

Advocacy work is in full swing

Written by Stephanie Caredes, CTA, Tax Counsel

It has been a very busy start to the year for the Tax Policy and Advocacy team with numerous submissions already on our plate. 
We are interested to understand members’ views on the reporting requirements that should apply to the Sharing Economy and what members think of the ATO’s proposal to replace certain Annual Taxation Determinations with website content.Please send your comments through to the Tax Policy inbox.

Gearing up for the election
Members will have seen the Prime Minister’s announcement earlier this week to increase the small business Instant Asset Write-off amount from $20,000 to $25,000 effective 29 January 2019 and extend the availability of the write-off to 30 June 2020. This extends both the threshold for 17 months and the availability of the measure by 12 months from its original end date of 30 June 2019.
We seek members’ views on whether you think this measure is useful to your clients. What has the take-up of the original…

Why ‘learning agility’ is crucial for success in tax

Sabah Hussain, FTI, Marketing & Innovation Finance Manager - Tip Top Australia (George Weston Foods), on why curiosity is King in tax.
For Sabah, working within a daily fresh environment at Tip Top means no one day is the same. She is constantly having to adapt and respond to different internal and external risks, and opportunities which can be uncomfortable. Yet, it forces her to adapt and apply lateral thinking as well as technical skills.
It’s no secret that technological advancement and compliance changes are shaking things up in the tax profession.
“As people we can be hardwired to avoid change and find comfort in routine,” she says.

“This is quite characteristic of traditional tax, accounting and finance disciplines, particularly in the areas of compliance, governance and reporting.
“It is important, however, that as professionals we are constantly keeping ourselves aware of not only technical developments, but also an overall general awareness of current affairs, industry …

Robert Campbell, CTA, on saving marriages and more

Yes, you read right. Here is a glimpse into how a tax professional does exactly that.
Robert Campbell, CTA, and Director at McCleod, Campbell & Associates, started his career in an undergraduate position at a small suburban accounting firm in Parramatta, which gave him a broad introduction to many aspects of the accounting practice.
He then gravitated towards tax and went on to work with EY in their tax consulting division.
“I loved learning about the tax rules and understanding more about them, and I would teach myself through the master tax guide,” he says.
Robert says his biggest achievements include working in tax for 20 years and setting up his own practice in that time.
“This is because I set it up from scratch,” he explains.
“I didn't buy a business or take over someone's feed-base, I set it up fromnothing.”
Interestingly, Robert says he keeps a low profile.
“I work strictly off referrals,” he explains.
“My business is strictly referral driven. There's never a wee…

When Does Tax Advice Become Legal Advice Which Contravenes State or Territory Law

For accountants and lawyers practising in tax, it can be difficult to stay across the range of different laws that apply in each State and Territory.

Every tax practitioners and tax agents should be aware of their obligations and what they can and cannot do in relation to providing advice. This ‘blind spot’ is partly because Federal law permits registered tax agents and BAS agents to do various things, and this law (if constitutional) overrides State and Territory laws. 
In his upcoming session, 'When Does Tax Advice Become Legal Advice Which Contravenes State or Territory Law' at the upcoming 2019 National Convention, John Morgan, CTA will examine this overlooked area and the consequences of getting it wrong.

Ranging from return of fees to criminal prosecution, they can put your professional accreditation at risk, and will be more than theoretical if they threaten the business model of affected practices.

We spoke to John about what to expect from his session. 
John said, “D…