Individual Tax Returns: Tax Tips FY19

The time has come to start preparing for your 2019 tax return. There are a couple of key areas of interest and changes that you should be aware of. The ATO has told us that they have two key areas of focus this financial year: Work related deductions, and Rental property deductions. There has also been changes to Superannuation for the 2018-19 financial year that allow you to carry forward…  Read more

Important EOFY actions for Businesses

We all would like to reduce our tax exposure and minimise risk of an audit by the regulators. This end of financial year update outlines the actions to take to do exactly that: Summary of key changes and actions What’s New: Instant Asset Write Off – Extension and increase to the instant asset write-off Single touch payroll – extended to all employees TPAR – Reporting payments to contractors Withholding Tax…  Read more

Single Touch Payroll is coming

The deadline for employers with fewer than 20 employees to implement Single Touch Payroll is fast approaching. Unless you are exempted, you must implement this change by 1 July 2019. If you are an employer with 20 or more employees, then you should already have implemented Single Touch Payroll. What is Single Touch Payroll? Single Touch Payroll (STP) is a new way to report your employees’ payroll information directly from…  Read more

What you need to know about FBT 2019

What is FBT? Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) is a tax payable by employers on certain benefits they provide to their employees. The FBT year runs from 1 April to 31 March. If you have provided certain benefits to your employees, you may be liable to pay FBT. What types of benefits? FBT is payable on any benefit given to an employee (such as free or discounted goods or services), unless…  Read more

Be Alert for Scams

Be Alert for Scams We have seen a dramatic rise in the number of scam attempts on our clients in the form of: • ATO Debt scams • Fake Medicare Scams • ASIC scams As a simple rule, if you are getting threatening phone calls, text messages or emails demanding payment from a government agency, or offering you free money, it’s likely to be a scam. They are increasingly sophisticated…  Read more

How To Protect Your Business Against Cyber Crime

It’s important to keep your business, staff and client information secure. Below are some tips to help protect you against the growing threat of Cyber Crime in Australia. Ensure your passwords are strong and secure Regularly change passwords and do not share them. Use multi-factor authentication where possible. Multi-factor authentication requires users to provide multiple pieces of information to authenticate themselves – for example, a text message to your phone…  Read more

Last Minute Tax Reminder for Businesses

As we get closer to the end of financial year, you may be thinking about what deadlines you still need to meet for your business, as well as how you may be able to claim some tax benefits. 1. Maximise Deductible Contributions The concessional superannuation cap for 2018 is $25,000 per year. Do not go over this limit or you will pay more tax! Note that employer super guarantee contributions are…  Read more

End of Financial Year Tax Tips

  The end of financial year is almost here! Now is the time to review what strategies you can use to minimise your tax. 1. MAXIMISE DEDUCTIBLE SUPER CONTRIBUTIONS Individuals can now make tax-deductible personal contributions to superannuation to reduce their taxable income. The advantage of this strategy is that superannuation contributions are taxed at 15% or 30% compared to typical personal income tax rates of between 34.5% and 49%.Superannuation…  Read more

What you need to know about FBT 2018

The Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) year ends on 31 March. We’ve outlined the key hot spots for employers and employees. Motor vehicles – using the company car outside of work New safe harbour for utes and commercial vehicles Car parking – are you really declaring the true cost of parking? The living away from home allowance – the common errors Salary sacrifice or employee contribution – where employers are getting…  Read more

Work-related travel claims on the ATO’s radar

Last year the ATO went before the Administrative Appeals Tribunal to battle against a truck driver whose large work-related travel claims grabbed their attention. The case revealed that the taxpayer had failed to declare travel allowance received from his employer as income, didn’t keep records for any work-related travel expenditure, and ultimately thought he was entitled to claim the full amount of the Commissioner of Taxation’s reasonable rates each day…  Read more

In an effort to encourage compliance, ATO relaxes rules for private use of work utes

The ATO has plans to relax the rules for the private use of work utes in the lead up to their blitz on Fringe Benefits Tax non-compliance. Existing rules allow utes to only be used for ‘minor, infrequent and irregular’ journeys without incurring Fringe Benefits Tax. At the moment these journeys can include the occasional use of the vehicle to remove domestic rubbish. The draft compliance guidelines allow for more…  Read more

Saving for your first home? Thinking about downsizing? How super can lend a hand

If you’re planning on downsizing, or are at the opposite end of the spectrum and saving for your first home, you may be able to take advantage of the super concessions introduced as part of the housing initiatives in the 2017 Federal Budget. For downsizers, super concessions will allow them to contribute proceeds from the sale of their home to super. For first home savers it means being able to withdraw…  Read more

State tax warning for family trusts

Recent changes to State laws may trigger a surprise tax bill for family trusts (discretionary trusts). The problem for family trusts stems from recent legislative changes in New South Wales (NSW), Victoria (VIC) and Queensland (QLD) that impose a surcharge on foreigners purchasing residential land. While that might not sound like a problem, the issue arises because of the way family trust deeds are often drafted. These trust deeds are…  Read more

Saving on insurance costs

The 2017 State Budget brought with it a change worthy of celebration for small businesses. The NSW small business exemption will mean that from 1 January 2018, small businesses will no longer have to pay stamp duty on certain types of insurance. The exemption applies to small businesses whose aggregated turnover is under $2 million. The types of insurance that the exemption will apply to include: Commercial vehicle insurance Commercial…  Read more

Government incentives to hire new employees

Changes to the Jobs Action Plan and the Small Business Grant are providing incentives for NSW businesses to up their employee count. Companies that are liable for payroll tax can earn up to $6000 for every new employee, and those that aren’t liable for payroll tax can earn up to $2000 per employee. Jobs Action Plan The Jobs Action Plan (JAP) provides eligible NSW businesses with a payroll tax rebate…  Read more

Thinking of purchasing a residential property? Here is what you need to know about recent property depreciation changes

Last month the Senate passed the Treasury Laws Amendment (Housing Tax Integrity) Bill 2017, with which came changes to depreciation for existing residential properties purchased after 9 May 2017. The purpose of the amendment is to stop owners and investors claiming overstated deductions by ‘refreshing’ the values of previously used depreciating assets in residential rental properties. How does this affect me? If you have acquired an existing residential property containing ‘previously…  Read more

Foreign property owners slapped with fee for vacant property

Australia has followed the international trend of penalising foreign owners of Australian residential property who keep their property vacant for extended periods of time. Last month Parliament approved legislation that imposes an annual vacancy fee on foreign owners of residential real estate if the property is not occupied or genuinely available on the rental market for at least 183 days in a particular 12 month period. Foreign owners can avoid…  Read more

The flipside of renovating

Many clients presume that when they renovate their gains will be exempt from tax, so long as the property being renovated is their main residence. This is not always the case. We’ve summarised the ATO’s guide to property development, building and renovating, and pulled out key points about the tax implications of property flipping. To read the full guide, visit the ATO website. What is property flipping? Property flipping occurs…  Read more

Xerocon 2017

Last month we travelled to Melbourne to attend Xerocon, the annual conference held by Xero accounting software. It was a great opportunity for the team to learn more about what Xero has planned in the future, to spend quality time bonding over ramen, and to hear from inspiring speakers. Here’s what our team had to say about their experience:  Keegan I really enjoyed travelling to Melbourne with the team for…  Read more

How to get to our new office

As you will no doubt be aware, last month the team moved into our new premises in North Sydney. We’ve finally settled in and are beyond pleased with the location and refreshing chance of space. We look forward to showing you around! Our new address is: Level 4 1 James Place North Sydney Our new office is really easy to get to by car or by public transport. There is plenty…  Read more