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AUGUST 2019 REPORT

  • ATO will inform certain tax agent clients their information is “Tax ready” – Where employers report through STP and clients are linked to ATO online services through myGov, the ATO will inform via myGov that their end of year payment summary (income statement) is “Tax ready”.
  • Top mistakes to avoid this tax time – To help taxpayers work out what they can claim, the ATO has developed 30 occupation guides for specific occupations.
  • Pension deeming rates cut from 1 July 2019 – The Government has announced that it will lower the social security deeming rate for financial investments.
  • Personal tax cuts Bill passed without amendment, now law – Starting immediately, low and middle income earners with an income up to $126,000 will receive up to $1,080 in LMITO.
  • ATO statement on administration of the low and middle income tax offset – The amount of the offset taxpayers may be entitled to, and the amount of any refund, will differ for everyone depending on individual circumstances.
  • STP reporting irregularities – The ATO is contacting Single Touch Payroll enabled employers who have either ceased reporting for over 45 days or have submitted employees under multiple payroll or BMS IDs.
  • Employees guide for work expenses – The ATO has released a guide to help employees decide whether their work expenses are deductible, and what records they need to keep.
  • FBT, taxi travel and ride sourcing – For businesses, taxi travel by an employee is an exempt benefit if the travel is a single trip beginning or ending at the employee’s place of work.
  • New ATO data-matching program – The ATO said it will acquire overseas movement data from the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) for individuals with an existing HELP, VSL or TSL debt.
  • GST on low value goods – The ATO says it has now collected over $250 million in additional GST since the GST on low value goods measure began on 1 July 2018.
  • Super downsizer contributions reach $1 billion – Older Australians downsizing from their family homes have contributed $1 billion to their superannuation funds.
  • Reasonable travel and overtime meal allowance amounts for 2019-20 – the Commissioner has released the amounts considered reasonable for employee claims for overtime meal expenses, domestic travel expenses and overseas travel expenses.

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JULY 2019 REPORT

  • Requirement registered to lodge 2019 tax and other returns – The Notice of Requirement to Lodge a Return for Income Year Ended 30 June 2019 has been registered. This covers income tax returns and other lodgements.
  • Payment summaries and STP this tax time – taxpayers may need a myGov account – For the first time, as a result of the introduction of Single Touch Payroll (STP), taxpayers may need a myGov account in order to get the payment summary details they need to complete their 2019 tax returns.
  • STP exemptions and deferrals – ATO reminders – With reported unpreparedness for (STP), mainly among small businesses, the ATO has reminded businesses about the STP exemptions and deferrals that are available.
  • Ombudsman calls on ATO to cease small business recovery action where tax disputes are before AAT – The Ombudsman has called for the ATO to immediately cease debt recovery action where tax disputes were before the AAT. The ATO states that its long standing policy on debt recovery for cases in dispute at the AAT is to only pursue disputed debt in “exceptional circumstances” and that there are only ”very rare cases”.
  • Cryptocurrency: record keeping requirements and data matching program – The Commissioner has published a gazette notice setting out the record keeping requirements for cryptocurrency owners and traders. The data obtained from cryptocurrency designated service providers is being used to identify the buyers and sellers of crypto-assets and quantify the related transactions.
  • Super death benefit for de facto partner upheld – The Federal Court has dismissed an appeal against a decision to pay a superannuation death benefit pension to a deceased’s de facto partner instead of a lump sum to his estate. It was not satisfied that the Tribunal had misunderstood its task or failed to take into account all the circumstances of the relationship.
  • Protecting Your Super – how new law may affect SMSFs – The Treasury Laws Amendment (Protecting Your Superannuation Package) Act 2019 introduces a number of reforms to protect individual’s super savings from undue erosion by fees and unnecessary insurance.
  • ATO reminds SMEs about paying super for backpackers – The ATO has reminded businesses that employ backpackers that they may need to pay superannuation guarantee for them.

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JUNE 2019 REPORT

  • Deferring derivation of income – tips to defer the recognition of income.
  • Bringing forward tax-deductible expenses – tips to bring deduction claims forward into 2019.
  • Tax relief – for individuals and small businesses.
  • Issues for individuals – tips for claiming work-related expenses, and a reminder about recent superannuation changes.
  • Issues for businesses – a look at company tax rates, imputation and small business deductions.
  • Tax compliance and developments – Single Touch Payroll and a reminder to beware of ATO impersonation scams at tax time.

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MAY 2019 REPORT

  • ATO to ramp up ABN investigations and cancellations – The ATO is ramping up its focus on cancelling inactive ABNs over the coming months.
  • Fringe benefits tax: rates, thresholds and ATO focus for 2019–2020 – The ATO has issued its annual rulings about FBT rates and thresholds and will focus on monitoring a range of related issues this year.
  • Guidance on when a company carries on a business – New guidance is now available on how the ATO deals with the concept of a company “carrying on a business”.
  • Super guarantee amnesty not yet law, but $100 million recovered – There has been a notable increase in employers coming forward to self-report unpaid super guarantee amounts in response to the amnesty proposal announcement, despite it not yet being law.
  • Instant asset write-off with Budget changes now law – The write-off rules have been extended to medium sized businesses, the threshold has increased and the dates are extended.
  • Rental deductions: ATO audits to double – The ATO has warned that it will increase its scrutiny of rental-related deductions this year.
  • Shortfall penalties reduced under new ATO initiative – If the ATO finds an error on a tax return or an activity statement during an audit or review, the taxpayer may now be eligible for automatic penalty relief.
  • How the ATO identifies wealthy individuals and their businesses – The ATO says it uses sophisticated data matching and analytic models to identify wealthy individuals and link them to associated businesses.

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APRIL 2019 REPORT

  • Things to get right this FBT season – FBT returns will soon be due and as always, it’s vital to make sure you use the latest rates and rely on the correct information.
  • Tax concierge service available to small businesses – Small business owners who seek a review of an ATO decision but don’t have legal representation can now access experienced tax lawyers and support at significantly reduced cost.
  • ATO small business benchmarks updated – The ATO has released its latest small business benchmarks for over 100 different industries, drawn from more than 1.5 million Australian small businesses.
  • Early recovery of small business tax debts: ATO to be scrutinised – The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman will look into the ATO’s practices in pursuing early recovery of tax debts from small businesses.
  • Compensation for defective ATO administration: review announced – A former Secretary of the Attorney-General’s Department will lead a review of the Scheme for the Compensation for Detriment Caused by Defective Administration.
  • Single Touch Payroll: low-cost solutions now available – A range of no-cost and low-cost solutions are now coming into the market for small employers’ STP reporting.
  • Super guarantee amnesty not yet law: ATO will apply existing law – Until law giving effect to the proposed superannuation guarantee amnesty is enacted, the ATO will apply the existing law to super guarantee charge statements.
  • ATO finds 90% error rate in sample of rental property claims – The ATO’s next area of focus will be rental income and related tax deductions.
  • Property used for storage an active asset for small business CGT concession purposes – The Administrative Appeals Tribunal has decided that a property used to store materials, tools and other equipment was an active asset for the purpose of the small business CGT concessions.

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AUGUST 2018 Report

  • Government launches new service to simplify business registrations – The new stand-alone service provides a simpler and clearer way to register a business.
  • Illegal early access to super: ATO warning about scammers – Taxpayers are urged to be aware of scammers who promise to organise access to retirement savings for a fee.
  • ATO gives small businesses the chance to seek independent review of ATO audit position – The ATO is running a 12-month pilot to extend its independent review service to certain small business taxpayers.
  • Transacting with cryptocurrency: updated ATO info – The ATO has updated the information on its website dealing with capital gains tax and cryptocurrency.
  • Tax gap for individuals is $8.8 billion, says ATO – The ATO has estimated the size of the “tax gap” between the tax the ATO collects and the amount it would collect if all taxpayers fully complied with the law.
  • ATO warns about scammers at tax time – Taxpayers should be on “high alert” for tax-related scams at tax time.
  • Income tax residency rules for individuals: Board of Taxation recommends reform measures– The Board of Taxation’s recently published report makes recommendations to modernise and simplify the rules.
  • Retirement income covenant needs more flexibility: KPMG – KPMG has released a submission in response to the Treasury position paper on the proposed retirement income covenant announced as part of the 2018–2019 Budget.
  • Illegal phoenix activity costs billions; new Phoenix Hotline – The ATO estimates the annual direct impact of illegal phoenix activity and establishes a hotline for reporting phoenix behaviour.
  • Super funds deliver healthy returns for 2017–2018 – Funds in the “growth” category continue to provide strong positive returns.
  • GST exemption for offshore sellers of hotel bookings to be removed: draft legislation released – The proposed new rules will ensure offshore sellers of hotel accommodation in Australia calculate their GST turnover in the same way as local sellers.

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JULY 2018 Report

  • Business lending practices in spotlight at Royal Commission – The Financial Services Royal Commission’s third round of hearings focused on the conduct of financial services entities when providing credit to small and medium enterprises.
  • Personal tax cuts now law – The legislation to enact the Government’s seven-year personal income tax reform plan passed Parliament on 21 June 2018.
  • GST property settlement online forms – From 1 July 2018, purchasers of newly constructed residential properties or new subdivisions are required to remit GST directly to the ATO as part of settlement.
  • Major ATO focus on work-related clothing and laundry this tax time –In 2017 around six million people made claims for work-related clothing and laundry expenses, totalling nearly $1.8 billion. The ATO believes many taxpayers are making mistakes or deliberately over-claiming.
  • Advisory Board to help clamp down on the black economy – The new Government-established Board will include members of the private and public sectors who will provide strategic advice on trends and risks in the black economy.
  • Superannuation system: Productivity Commission draft report – The draft report recommends a range of changes to improve Australia’s superannuation system.
  • SMSF compliance: don’t slip up – The 2016-2017 financial year includes a few twists and turns which trustees should factor in to avoid late lodgment.

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KBH PartnersJULY 2018 Report

JUNE 2018 Report

  • Deferring derivation of income – tips to defer the recognition of income.
  • Bringing forward tax-deductible expenses – tips to bring deduction claims forward into 2018.
  • Issues for businesses – a look at company tax rates, imputation, small business deductions and concessions.
  • Issues for individuals – the end of the Budget repair levy, tips for claiming work-related expenses, and a reminder about recent superannuation changes.
  • Issues for property owners – changes for owners of residential rental properties, CGT and GST withholding on property sales, and a proposal to abolish the main residence CGT exemption for non-residents.
  • Tax compliance and developments – Single Touch Payroll, GST on low value imported goods and contractor payments in building and construction.

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KBH PartnersJUNE 2018 Report

MAY 2018 Report

  • ATO closely examines work-related car expenses – The ATO is concerned about taxpayers making mistakes or deliberately lodging false claims for work-related car expenses, and will closely examine claims in 2018 tax returns.
  • Data matching finds taxpayers with unnamed Swiss bank accounts – More than 100 Australians have been identified as “high risk” and will be subject to ATO investigation.
  • CGT main residence exemption to disappear for non-residents – A Bill that is currently before Parliament proposes to change who can qualify for the CGT main resident exemption.
  • Residential rental property travel expense deduction changes – Individuals, SMSFs and “private” trusts and partnerships can longer claim tax deductions for non-business travel costs related to their residential rental properties.
  • Government to increase civil penalties for white-collar crime – the Federal Government has agreed to increase the civil penalties for corporate and financial misconduct, for both individuals and bodies corporate.
  • Businesses, get ready: GST on low value goods – From 1 July 2018, GST will be imposed on the supply low value goods from outside of Australia to Australian consumers.
  • Financial Complaints Authority takes shape – The Federal Minister for Revenue and Financial Services has announced the authorisation of the new financial dispute resolution scheme, the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA).
  • Banking Royal Commission wraps up evidence on financial advice – The Royal Commission has adjourned until 21 May 2018.
  • ATO assessments issued for excess super pension balances – The ATO warns that SMSF members may receive an ETB assessment even if they didn’t receive an ETB determination.

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