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    Financial Industry

    Changes to casual employment

    The Fair Work Act 2009 was amended on Friday 26 March 2021. The amendments include changes to workplace rights and obligations for casual employees. These changes were made by the Fair Work Amendment Act 2021.

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    Quantitative easing and the Australian economy

    You’ve probably heard the term being used quite a bit recently… ‘quantitative easing’ has been a hot topic in financial news reports since the impact of the global pandemic was felt earlier this year.

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    Federal Budget review 2020-21

    The Treasurer, Josh Frydenberg, delivered the Federal Budget on 6 October 2020. Originally postponed from May 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic, this Budget has been highly anticipated and here we have a review of its inclusions.

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    JobKeeper 2.0 from 28 September 2020

    From 28 September 2020, the eligibility tests to access JobKeeper for employers will change, as will the amount of the JobKeeper payment for employees and business participants.

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    JobKeeper 2.0

    If your business currently receives JobKeeper, your arrangements will generally remain unchanged until 27 September 2020. From 28 September 2020, employers seeking to claim JobKeeper payments will need to reassess their eligibility.

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    JobKeeper Payment… the process and more

    On 15 April 2020, the Australian Taxation Office released their guidance regarding the JobKeeper Payment. We have compiled the update below to advise on the most relevant points, and outlined steps that need to be taken for eligible businesses to receive it.

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    Government assistance for workers

    On 8 April 2020, the JobKeeper stimulus package passed through Parliament. It provides critical financial support for many struggling businesses and individuals in this difficult time.

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    New Government stimulus – action plan

    On 30th March 2020, the Government announced another stimulus package for the Australian economy worth $130 billion. It is the third and largest package announced to help keep the economy afloat.

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    Government second stimulus package

    A second Government stimulus package was announced on 22nd March 2020, adding another $66 billion into the economy… with even more on the way.
    We have assessed the package with regard to both our business and non-business clients.

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    ATO receives five more years of policy details from insurers

    The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) today revealed it will be requesting a further five years’ worth of policy information from over 30 insurance companies about taxpayers who own marine vessels, thoroughbred horses, fine art, high value motor vehicles and aircraft.

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    GST and drop shipping

    If you use drop shipping for your business, GST will apply to sales of low value imported goods valued at $1,000 or less. Australian retailers should treat these sales the same as other domestic sales and apply GST at the point of sale.

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    On 1 July 2019 your insurance cover may be changing!

    In February this year, the Government passed legislation which prevents trustees of APRA-regulated funds from providing insurance to members with inactive superannuation accounts, unless a member has directed otherwise.

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    Cryptocurrency ATO Data matching program

    The Commissioner has given notice that it will collect data from cryptocurrency designated service providers, under notice, to identify individuals or businesses who have or may be engaged in buying, selling or transferring cryptocurrency during the 2014/15 to 2019/20 financial years.

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    Federal Opposition Australian Labor Party (ALP) tax policies

    The Australian Labor Party (ALP) has announced an intention in government to change franking credits from a refundable to a non-refundable tax credit from 1 July 2019.

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    2019-20 Federal Budget highlights

    The Federal Treasurer, Mr Josh Frydenberg, handed down the 2019/20 Federal Budget at 7:30 pm (AEDT) on 2 April 2019. Mr Frydenberg said the Budget is “back in the black”, announcing a budget surplus of $7.1b, and forecasting a surplus of $11b in 2020/21, $17.8b in 2021/22 and $9.2b in 2022/23.

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    Policy changes for Australian government contracts

    From 1 July 2019, government contracts worth over $4m (incl. GST) will require an ATO Statement of Tax Record (STR) to be attached to all tenders. The STR is required for all entities listed on the tender, and potentially some sub-contractors as well.

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    Data matching program – rental bond data

    The ATO has given notice, in Commonwealth Government Gazette notice C2018G00633, 10 August 2018, of its intention to collect real property rental bond data dating back to 20 September 1985 (the introduction of the CGT regime).

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    Data matching for online accommodation platforms

    Individuals that have or may be engaged in providing accommodation services through an online platform will have that data collected by the ATO.

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    Duty remains payable on GST for property sale

    Following new GST obligations on certain property purchases which took effect from 1 July 2018, Revenue NSW has clarified that duty continues to be payable on the GST component of such a sale.

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    Stamp duty surcharges for foreign investors

    All states in Australia have (or will) implemented surcharges on foreign investors in the residential property market. The following is a state-by-state breakdown for foreign purchasers, including the specific definitions and exclusions which apply in each jurisdiction.

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    2018-19 Federal Budget highlights

    Mr Scott Morrison, the Federal Treasurer, handed down his third Federal Budget on 8 May 2018. Mr Morrison said the Budget is focused on further strengthening the economy to “guarantee the essentials Australians rely on” and “responsibly repair the budget”.

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    CbC reporting: ATO guidance

    The ATO has released guidance on the implementation of Country-by-Country (CbC) reporting in Australia. The ATO guidance outlines its administrative practice, including advice on CbC reporting, to assist taxpayers in understanding and meeting reporting obligations for significant global entities).

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    Visa data matching available for ATO

    From 1 July 2017, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) will receive information on holders of a visa from the Department of Immigration and Border Protection. The information received will cover the 2017/18, 2018/19 and 2019/20 financial years.

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    Country by country (CbC) reporting for significant global entities

    Country by country (CbC) reporting applies to income years commencing on, or after, 1 January 2016. Significant Global Entities (SGEs) need to electronically lodge three statements (the local file, master file and CbC report) with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

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    Crowd-sourced equity funding licences

    Crowd-sourced funding helps both start-ups and small to medium sized businesses and investors access the opportunities that are available from an innovative economy.

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    Extending the two year main residence exemption

    When Tax Laws Amendment (2011 Measures No 9) Bill 2011 was given royal assent on 21 March 2012, it allowed certain discretions to the Commissioner of Taxation. One such discretion allowed an extension of time for capital gains tax exemption for a dwellings of a deceased estate.

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    Employers in the building and construction industry – portable long service leave requirements

    The Long Service Corporation operates the portable long service leave scheme available to workers in the industry. If you operate in the building and construction industry and you employ workers, you must be registered with the Long Service Corporation in NSW.

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    Payments to sportspersons for their “public fame” and “image”

    The ATO has drafted safe harbour guidelines for apportioning payments made to professional sportspersons for the use of their public fame or image. The ATO will accept that 10% of a sportsperson’s playing contract is associated with these appearances.

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    Transfer pricing & safe harbour provisions

    The scope and complexity of Australia’s transfer pricing regime has increased considerably following the recent enactment of more stringent and robust domestic transfer pricing rules.

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    NSW Office of State Revenue (OSR) renamed Revenue NSW

    From 31 July, the NSW Office of State Revenue (OSR) and the State Debt Recovery Office (SDRO) are called Revenue NSW. All functions, administrative and legislative powers of both offices continue under the new name.

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    Labor proposes change to taxing discretionary trusts

    The Leader of the Opposition, Mr Bill Shorten, has announced that a Labor Government would introduce a standard minimum 30% tax rate for discretionary trust distributions to beneficiaries over the age of 18.

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    Extension of instant asset write-off Bill introduced

    The Treasury Laws Amendment (Accelerated Depreciation For Small Business Entities) Bill 2017 has been introduced into parliament.

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    2017-18 Federal Budget highlights

    The Federal Treasurer, Mr Scott Morrison, has handed down his second Federal Budget (the government’s first of its three-year term) at 7.30 pm (AEST) on 9 May 2017.

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    Government delivers stability in 2017-18 Federal Budget

    Stability and confidence for superannuation is the good news coming out of the 2017-18 Federal Budget. With SMSF members still working through the wide-reaching and complex superannuation changes of the last Budget which take effect from 1 July 2017, this Budget’s minimal changes will result in a period for members to ensure they have the correct strategies in place.

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    Healthcare practitioners and lump sum receipts

    Recently, the ATO have released a document which provides clarity on upfront incentive payments made by healthcare centre operators to entice practitioners to operate in their centre.

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    ATO digital services and systems downtime

    Since approximately 9.30am AEDT Monday, 12th December 2016, the entire Australian Taxation Office (ATO) website including the tax agent portal has shutdown due to a “world first” hardware issue.

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    ATO data matching program – ride sourcing

    The ATO has advised that it will be collecting data to identify individuals engaged in providing ride-sourcing services during the 2016/17 and 2017/18 financial years.

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    Removal of the HECS-HELP discount and voluntary repayment bonus

    From 1 January 2017, the Australian Government will remove the upfront HECS-HELP discount of 10% for eligible students that pay their student contributions upfront and remove the voluntary HELP repayment bonus of 5%.

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    ATO data matching program — credit and debit cards

    The ATO has given notice that it will continue to annually acquire data from credit and debit card providers relating to payments to businesses. The ATO will obtain data for the 2015/16 and 2016/17 income years on the identifying details of merchants with credit and debit card merchant facility and the amount and quantity of the transactions processed.

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    ATO data matching programs — share transactions and selling on eBay

    The ATO has given notice of two data matching programs, one relating to online selling and the other to share transactions.

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    Changes to the Assets Test for Centrelink Aged Pensions from 1 January 2017

    As the end of the year is drawing rapidly to a close it may feel like the changes to the Asset Test for the Aged Pension have just been drawn up, however, these were announced in the 2015 Federal Budget.

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    Selling property over $2 million – new rules apply from 1 July 2016

    As part of the governments focus on strengthening our foreign resident capital gains tax (CGT) regime, new rules will soon apply to sales of Australian real property with a market value of $2 million or more.

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    ASIC issues warning to accountants

    The accountants exemption expires on the 1st July 2016 and accountants will be breaking the law if they provide advice on SMSF’s without an AFSL.

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    Extension given to comply with the LRBA safe harbour provisions

    The ATO has announced that the date for making sure LRBA related party loans comply with the new safe harbour

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