GST administration annual performance report 2016–17 by ATO – $59.8m collected/4.3% increase; low value goods; digital economy & currency; sharing economy (Uber); fewer objections; more debt

On 25 January 2018 (one day before Australia Day), the Deputy Commissioner – Indirect Taxation: Tim Dyce, presented the Commissioner’s ‘GST administration annual performance report for 2016–17’ and uploaded the summary set out below. The principal points were as follows. The ATO’s collections growth this year, while not quite as high as last year, but…

A & A Property Developers v MCCA Asset Management Ltd – inserting merely ‘GST’ in the box (instead of ‘plus GST’) was sufficient to get the purchaser of the land to pay the vendor extra for its GST liability – Victorian Court of Appeal

In December 2017 the Victorian Court of Appeal allowed the appeal brought by the vendor in A & A Property Developers Pty Ltd v MCCA Asset Management Ltd as trustee for the MCCA Property Fund [2017] VSCA 365. The Court found that the insertion of the words “GST”, rather than “plus GST”, in the Particulars of Sale,…

ACN 154 520 199 Pty Ltd v CofT – AAT orders ATO to produce internal advices regarding the GST-free status of supplies of gold bullion that was ‘re-refined’

The AAT has directed that the Commissioner produce any ‘internal legal advice’ that bore on the question of whether it was reasonably arguable that the taxpayer’s supplies of gold bullion were GST-free or input taxed. The AAT made this order under s37(2) of the AAT Act, on the basis that it was “of the opinion…

ACNC recommends changes to its governing legislation, including: register to show reasons for revocation; minimum of 3 responsible persons; post registration protection for charities assets

The Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) has released its submission to the government review of the ACNC legislation. The Commission made a number of recommendations to be considered by the review panel, including: Whether measures could be introduced at the Commonwealth level to protect a charity’s accumulated charitable income and assets after its ACNC…

ATO extends due date for 2016–17 SMSF returns to 30 June 2018 to cater for all the changes resulting from the $1.6m ‘transfer balance cap’ measures

On 19 January 2018, the ATO announced that it will extend the due date for lodgment of self-managed superannuation fund (SMSF) annual returns for 2016–17 to 30 June 2018. This is the first financial year that the $1.6m ‘transfer balance cap’ (and related) measures came into operation – that is, from 1 July 2017. SMSF’s in particular, have important…

GST withholding by purchasers on the sale of ‘new residential premises’ – deferral in start date beyond 1 July 2018 required given delay in introducing (much less passing) the draft bill

The Government is proposing to introduce a system under which purchasers of ‘new residential property’ will have to withhold 1/11th of the purchase price and remit it to the Commissioner on account of the Vendor, who retains the liability to pay the tax. The proposed start date is for supplies on or after 1 July…

ATO annual SMSF statistics – 99.6% of all funds; 30% of $2.3t super assets; member balances grow; 4% of assets are LRBA funded

On 18 January 2018, the ATO released its latest statistics on the self-managed super fund (SMSF) sector with the publication of the annual Self-Managed Superannuation Funds: A Statistical Overview 2015-16. Assistant Commissioner Kasey Macfarlane said the annual overview data shows that the sector continues to grow, with positive returns on assets and increasing fund and member…

GST digital currency conversion – draft determination under s9-85(2) issued to commence on 1 July 2017 with the ‘digital currency’ amendments

On Thursday 18.1.2018, the Commissioner released a draft of the ‘Legislative Instrument’, that the new s9-85(2) of the GST Act contemplates the Commissioner will make, to specify the way in which digital ‘consideration’, for a taxable supply can be converted into Australian currency, and thus create a tax liability (in our currency). The ‘digital currency’ amendments to the…

WLQC v CofT- AAT held it did not have jurisdiction to review ‘nil assessments’ of various Group companies (both before and after the 2005 amendments) as part of its claim to be ‘consolidated’ for tax purposes

The AAT has held that it did not have jurisdiction to review certain 2004 and 2005 ‘nil assessments’ of various applicant’s who were all members of a group of companies (Group) involved in the broadcasting industry. This application for review was part of a much larger dispute, that the Group had, with the Commissioner, going…

FOI disclosure of Treasury ‘dividend washing’ opinion/briefing – gives insight into the s177EA uncertainty (whether it would disallow the franking credit on the 2nd dividend)

On 12 January 2018, Treasury has released an historical document, under an FOI request, which discusses the potential application, of s 177EA of the ITAA 1936, to a type of “dividend washing” arrangement, which depended on selling shares ex-dividend, and buying another parcel ‘cum-dividend’, during a 2 day Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) trading window, for shareholders to…