Basics of a deceased estate

Unfortunately, having to deal with managing a deceased estate is a task many of us will have to shoulder at some stage in our lives — but having some familiarity with what’s involved beforehand will hopefully ease the burden. It is worth remembering that the law that applies to the assets and income of a […]

Private ruling for a SMSF?

The ATO says it can provide tailored technical assistance for SMSF trustees in some circumstances, orally or in writing, depending on the nature and complexity of their query. For example, you may need to seek tailored technical assistance if: If the contentious issue at hand is about how the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993 and Superannuation Industry (Supervision) […]

Pension Loan Scheme

To help pensioners who are asset rich but income poor, the government launched a version of a commercially available financial product, the reverse mortgage. The government’s answer is its pension loans scheme (PLS), whereby a pensioner can apply for a non-taxable loan using some form of real property as security. The PLS does not provide […]

Tax deductions for insurance premiums

As a general guideline, the ATO will allow a deduction for certain insurance premiums if it can be shown that the insurance cover relates to earning assessable income. In other words, life insurance, trauma insurance or critical care insurance are generally out. Income protection insurance is one example of the kind of cover that may provide an allowable […]

No deductions for non compliance payments

The government recently released exposure draft legislation that removes the ability of taxpayers to deduct certain payments – including payment of wages and payments to contractors – if the entity making the payment fails to comply with its obligations to withhold and report information to the ATO. If the PAYG withholding regime applied to the […]

Losing a tax loss

Business owners are naturally keen to be able to absorb a business loss as a tax deduction, but it also pays to not stray too far from the generally accepted rules regarding tax losses — there are circumstances where the ATO is legitimately able to deny such claims. The ATO has the discretion to disallow […]

Basics of Shares and Tax

Investing in the stockmarket is a lot more common than it was years ago, with ordinary Australians having experience with shares and the stockmarket either directly or through managed funds or via their superannuation fund. Recent research conducted by the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) found that around 60% of Australians hold share investments outside of […]

Personal Services Income (PSI) Overview

It is not uncommon for professional people who provide services to set up a separate entity to run their business, be it a trust, partnership or incorporated company. The allure of course is the lower tax rate that these can secure, rather than at the top marginal tax rate that an individual would generally wear. […]

Pension withdrawals above minimum

From 1 July 2017, where pension members are withdrawing amounts above their minimum annual pension payment required, they will be diminishing the capital value of their pension account.  Particularly if a member had already ‘maxed out’ their transfer balance cap (‘TBC’) of $1.6 million, they will likely have no opportunity to convert any further amounts […]

Pitfalls of renting your home

Generally, if you rent out part or all of your home, the rent money you receive is  assessable. This means that you must declare your rental income in your income tax return, but you can also claim deductions for any associated expenses. However, be warned. If you rent put part of your home, such as […]