taxman sends a bill letterbox

When the taxman sends a bill, not a refund

July 6, 2021

While most people look forward to receiving a tax refund once their return is processed by the ATO, it is also not unheard of to receive a tax bill on occasion. Most people who earn income as employees have tax payments made on their behalf throughout the year through pay-as-you-go (PAYG) withholding to help them…

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black brass gavel

Briefing a barrister

June 2, 2021

When you’re faced with a complex or high-risk question in tax or super, briefing a barrister can provide you with the expertise and perspective to help you move towards a solution with confidence. Barristers (who are also referred to as “counsel”) are independent specialists in court work and legal advice. There are specialist barristers across…

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EOFY tax planning tips

EOFY tips for your tax plan

May 5, 2021

The financial year is almost over, but there are still effective strategies you may be able to put in place. The aim is to make sure you pay no more tax than you have to for the 2020-21 year and maximise any refunds you may be entitled to. This is still the case, if not more…

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money coins plant

Some money is not counted as ‘income’ by the ATO

April 2, 2021

It is possible to receive amounts that are not expected by the ATO to be included as income in your tax return. However some of these amounts may be used in other calculations, and may therefore need to be included elsewhere in your tax return. The ATO classifies the amounts that it doesn’t count as…

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Update your ABN…or miss out!

March 2, 2021

Government agencies regularly access data contained in the ABN registration, and where this is not up-to-date the taxpayer may be missing out on stimulus measures, grants, and other government support. This became painfully evident during the 2019-20 bushfires, and is now re-surfacing during COVID-19 when it was found that a concerning amount of ABN data…

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Maserati steering wheel

Vehicle benefit FBT treatment changes under COVID-19

March 2, 2021

The special circumstances that coronavirus has thrown our way looks like having some very practical outcomes on certain areas of fringe benefits tax. One of the most prevalent and well-established category of fringe benefits centres on the provision and use of vehicles. The parking of a car, for instance, is a benefit that comes with…

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Unexpected lump sum payment

Unexpected lump sum payment in arrears? There’s a tax offset for that!

March 2, 2021

A lump sum payment in arrears is a payment you may receive that relates to earlier income years. The tax offset that can be utilised with these sorts of payments works to alleviate the problem of a taxpayer being expected to pay more tax in a year when a lump sum of back payments is…

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green car roof

Getting a tax valuation from the ATO

February 4, 2021

Not every individual situation fits neatly with the tax laws as they stand — sometimes a taxable item’s known value (and therefore the tax that applies to it) may need to be determined. Many tax laws require the taxpayer to determine the market value of something. Common instances include: for individuals – transfers of real…

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bushfire sunset

Natural disasters and help with your tax

February 4, 2021

Now that we are into bushfire season, and with flooding events having already occurred, it is perhaps timely to be reminded that as well as the more obvious immediate devastation inflicted on people’s property, destructive events such as fires or floods can also mean loss of income for the affected people. This can come about…

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ATO takes aim at you scratch my back auditing arrangements

ATO takes aim at ‘you-scratch-my-back’ auditing arrangements

December 2, 2020

It has long been an accepted standard that the auditor of an SMSF needs to be independent of that fund, and be a third party entity to the SMSF. This requirement is written into the relevant legislation. There have of course been breaches of this requirement, and instances where auditors and/or fund trustees have suffered…

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