The Assistant Treasurer, Josh Frydenberg, on Mon 19.1.2015, released the Inspector-General of Taxation’s Review into the ATO’s administration of valuation matters.

He said valuation requirements have been an area of ongoing concern for taxpayers. The Inspector-General has identified inherent difficulties associated with the nature and associated costs of valuations. Given these issues, the Inspector-General has made 9 recommendations to the ATO aimed at taking a more practical and transparent approach to assessing taxpayer valuations and developing administrative safe harbours.

The Government welcomed the recommendations, including the ATO’s commitment to develop a standard template for instructing valuers, which contribute to cutting red tape and reducing compliance costs for taxpayers.

The Inspector-General has also made 3 recommendations for the Government’s consideration:

  • consideration of ways to limit the need for valuations when developing tax law, including shortcuts or safe harbours as an alternative to full valuations;
  • consultation on ways to reduce reliance on valuations to access the small business capital gains tax concessions; and
  • tapering the eligibility criteria for tax concessions.

The Government said it will give full consideration to these recommendations, noting that the upcoming Tax White Paper will be an opportunity to provide a longer-term, considered approach to tax reform.

Source: Assistant Treasurer’s media release, 19 January 2015.

[FJM note:     These recommendations to make valuations simpler, cheaper and more certain will have particular application under the amended ESS legislation proposed – see above.]

[LTN 11, 19/1/15]