CofT v Pavihi – Promoter of schemes to transfer super to SMSF’s – subject to $200,000 civil penalty and 7 year ban from being involved in establishing SMSFs

The Federal Court has ordered a promoter of schemes that facilitated the illegal early release of super funds to pay a civil penalty of $220,000 and further restrained her for 7 years from being involved in the establishment of SMSFs. See the related Tax Technical article, from 2018, where the Commissioner obtained an interim injunction.…

Treasury Laws Amendment (Research and Development Tax Incentive) Bill 2019 introduced – increase $100m threshold to $150m; cap refunds to $4m pa; extend GAAR to R&D offsets and allow Innovation Board to issue binding rulings

On 5.12.19, the Government introduced the Treasury Laws Amendment (Research and Development Tax Incentive) Bill 2019 to ‘better target the Research and Development Tax Incentive (R&DTI) and to ensure its ongoing sustainability’ (as the Ministers said in their joint press release). This was first announced in the 2018-19 Budget. See below for the Treasurer’s Media Release and…

Treasury Laws Amendment (2019 Measures No 3) Bill 2019 – introduced proposing changes to concessions for ‘testamentary trusts’, FBT definition to include ‘Uber’ etc, company loss recoupment rules, small business restructures and various superannuation changes

On Thursday 5 December 2019, the Government introduced the Treasury Laws Amendment (2019 Measures No 3) Bill 2019 into the House of Representatives – proposing various amendments – many of which were previously flagged.

See below for a summary of the measures included in this Bill.

[Tax Month – December 2019]

GSJW v CofT – AAT gives the taxpayer a rare win, ‘releasing’ the taxpayer from $900k of GIC on ‘serious hardship’ grounds (leaving only $40k of ‘primary tax’)

A taxpayer has been able to secure partial release, from his tax debt, based on suffering ‘serious hardship’, if required to pay $949,365 in total tax related liabilities (about $910k of GIC or General Interest Charge and about $40k in primary tax). This matter came to the AAT, because the Commissioner had refused to exercise…

Australia’s tax take is second-highest in world – that is taxes on income and profits as a percentage of total taxes – AFR article shows OECD rankings

On Thursday 5 December 2019, the Australian Financial Review published an article by one of its Senior Writers: John Kehoe, entitled: Australia’s tax take is second-highest in world. Yes, we are second only to Denmark, due to our reliance on direct income taxes.

See below for article.

[Tax Month – December 2019]

High Court torpedoes class actions – holding that existing laws do not support Courts making ‘class funding orders’

On 4 December 2019, the Australian Financial Review published an article by its Legal Affairs Editor: Michael Pelly, entitled: High Court torpedoes class actions. This was the same day, as the High Court struck down two class funding orders and was about that case – see related Tax Technical article. See below, for the article. [Tax Month…

BMW & Westpac cases – High Court rules that the Federal Court Act and the NSW Civil Procedure Act do not support Courts making ‘Class Funding Orders’ representative class actions

On Wed 4.12.19, the High Court allowed an appeal from a decision of the Full Court of the Federal Court of Australia and an appeal from a decision of the Court of Appeal of the Supreme Court of New South Wales – effectively striking down ‘class funding orders’ in representative class actions. See related Tax Technical…

Peru-Australia Free Trade Agreement; Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement & Free Trade Agreement between Australia and Hong Kong, China – given force of law in Australia

The Customs Amendment (Growing Australian Export Opportunities Across the Asia-Pacific) Bill 2019 and Customs Tariff Amendment (Growing Australian Export Opportunities Across the Asia-Pacific) Bill 2019 have passed all stages without amendment and await Royal Assent.

See below for a summary of the effect of these Acts.

[Tax Month – December 2019]

 

Treasury Laws Amendment (International Tax Agreements) Bill 2019 received Royal Assent as Act No 107 of 2019 – Australian-Israel DTA & new Div 764 DTA deemed source rule

On 28.11.19, On 14 Nov 2019, Treasury Laws Amendment (International Tax Agreements) Bill 2019 received Royal Assent as Act No 107 of 2019. I gives Australian legislative effect to the new Australia-Israel Double Tax Agreement, and introduces a new Div 764 into our domestic law, for DTA purposes. See related Tax Technical article. See below for…

ATO uses additional resources to widen ‘review’ from largest 320 groups to largest 500 & ‘tax assurance resources’ to groups with wealth exceeding $5m or revenue over $10m

On Monday 2 December 2019, the Australian Financial Review published an article by its Political reporter: Tom McIlroy, headed: Rich listers targeted by ATO in cash push – relating to the ATO applying recently increased resources to widen its ‘review’ of the largest 320 private groups to the top 500 – amongst other things. See the…