Harper News

Entries for November 2013

Trusts 101: What are they, and how do they work?

<p>One of the big motivations for considering using a trust will be to protect assets. Property and other assets can be moved into a trust for protection from creditors, to maintain an estate until a beneficiary becomes old enough to have legal possession, or isolate valuable assets from a trading company that may be more exposed to litigation, for example

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Has the ATO made a wrong call on your tax assessment? Here’s what to do

If you believe your tax assessment is incorrect, the first step should be to go over your tax return or activity statement to check details against your notice of assessment. If you still believe the assessment is wrong, or if you have extra information that may change it, an amendment can be sought from the Tax Office (which we can help you with). 

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Tax Office reviewing dependant tax offset claims

 The Tax Office has stopped all tax returns with a Dependant (Invalid and Carer) Tax Offset claim and is reviewing them, following an unexpected upsurge in the number of individuals that have made claims for the new tax offset.

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Top 10 SMSF compliance mistakes

The Tax Office has published a list of the top 10 types of compliance mistakes made by SMSF trustees. The data from which the list is taken is based on the type of contraventions reported by approved SMSF auditors since 2005 (when compulsory contravention reporting started) up to June 30, 2012. 

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What you need to know about volunteering & tax

The worryingly early start to Australia’s bushfire season in New South Wales means scores of local volunteers are standing on the frontline, battling and protecting residents from the devastating fires. This raises the important practical question – do payments to volunteers constitute assessable income and are their expenses tax deductible? 

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Christmas cheer – with no FBT fear

With the year steadily making its way towards the festive period, businesses that are turning their attention to end-of-year celebrations will need to keep in mind the tax implications of throwing a Christmas party or handing over gifts to staff. Of course there’s nothing wrong with getting into the yuletide spirit, but business owners should make sure that while doing so, adverse tax outcomes are minimised. 

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