How long do I have to keep my tax records for?

By law, you must keep business and taxation records generally for five years from the later of when they are prepared, obtained or the transaction is completed. For those with very simple affairs you may be able to retain your records for only two years, however things are not necessarily that straightforward. Simple individual returns Individuals with simple tax affairs … Read More

Use of social media can open you up to a Tax Audit

Posting images and content online showing your latest holiday or purchase seemed like a good idea at the time! Just remember who might be looking at your social media as well. The ATO has always looked at different ways to data match what taxpayers declare in their tax returns against information available from other sources. In the past they have … Read More

Are you ready for the 1 July 2017 super changes?

Part 3: Interaction of the $1.6m pension transfer cap and death benefit payments In last month’s Part 2 of the super changes newsletter, “I have more than $1.6m in pension phase so what are my options?” http://stanleywilliamson.com.au/ready-1-july-2017-super-changes-part-2-1-6m-pension-phase-options/, we discussed the $1.6m Transfer Balance Cap (“TBC”) and “Transfer Balance Account (“TBA”). Not only does this TBC affect members who are currently receiving … Read More

Accessing your super – special circumstances

SMSFs have strict rules on when super monies can be withdrawn from the fund, most commonly when a member satisfies a form of retirement. However, special conditions apply should a member be diagnosed with a terminal illness who are looking to access their super benefits. Terminal illness grounds A terminal medical illness exists when: two registered medical practitioners have certified, … Read More

SMSF Properties – what can and cannot be done to them?

Borrowing by a self- managed superannuation fund (“SMSF”) to purchase property, whether it be residential or commercial, is not a new investment strategy however care needs to be taken when trustees wish to start to make alterations and improve these properties.  What is the current legislation? Current Limited Recourse Borrowing Arrangements (“LRBAs”) allow for an SMSF to borrow money to … Read More

Foreign Person and Land Tax Surcharge problem in family trusts

From 31 December 2016 discretionary trusts (commonly known as family trusts) holding residential properties could be subjected to the foreign person rule and could be liable for an extra 0.75% land tax cost on the unimproved land value of the residential property (on top of the existing 1.6%). Example Family Trust A has a potential beneficiary that meets the definition of “foreign person” … Read More

NSW Property Surcharge on Discretionary Trusts

If you have a Discretionary Trust (commonly known as Family Trust) and you have residential properties located in NSW within your Trust, then we suggest that you read this article in full. The NSW Government has recently made changes to the definition of “foreign persons” for the purposes of assessing duty and land tax liabilities. If you have a Discretionary … Read More

Should your Family Trust have a Corporate Trustee or an Individual Trustee?

Family Trusts can provide significant benefits for asset protection and tax minimisation, and as a result there has been significant growth in the number of Family Trusts. Family Trusts must have a Trustee. But should the Trustee be a company or an individual? This question is important for asset protection and succession planning. Under Trust law, a Trustee is personally … Read More

S & W Accounting and Tax App

Our brand new Accounting and Tax app is live and ready to download on your smart phone. It has a ranges of tools and features to keep you organised throughout the year, some helpful calculators to assist you with your finances, up-to-date finance news, blog posts plus lots, lots more. If you are an Apple user, view this newsletter on your phone … Read More

What does the budget mean for superannuation?

It has been a fortnight since the 2016 Federal Budget was delivered by the Turnbull government and unlike previous years, there were many proposed changes to superannuation. With such significant superannuation reforms in an election year, there is a lot of water to go under the bridge until they actually become law, however this means greater planning will be required … Read More