Harper News


Individuals

Substantiation for mobile, home phone and internet costs

The ATO has issued guidance on making claims for mobile phone use as well as home phone and internet expenses, and says that if you use any of these for work purposes you should be able to claim a ded...

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Deduction tip: Can you claim the cost of travelling to this office?

Tax time has arrived, and if you haven’t had us lodge your return yet, here is another deduction tip — should your circumstances allow. (If your return has already been lodged, then this c...

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Be prepared: What you need to bring to your tax return appointment

If you’re coming in soon to discuss your tax return for yourself or your business, try not to turn up completely empty handed, or at least to turn up prepared with some records or electronic acc...

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Streaming trust capital gains and franked distributions: An overview

The ATO has stated that a trust's capital gains and franked distributions can, if not prevented by the trust deed, be streamed to beneficiaries for tax purposes by making these beneficiaries “sp...

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ATO waves a red flag on deductions for holiday rentals

Just when many Australians are considering getting away for a mid-winter break, the ATO is reminding taxpayers that it is paying close attention to rental properties located in popular holiday destina...

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Land owned before CGT, but can a recent house built on it be CGT-free?

Naturally, a taxpayer will assume that when they build a house, that building will not qualify for CGT exemption until it becomes that taxpayer’s “main residence”. There is however ...

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Who is assessable on interest income? Those who “benefit”

It is a fairly well-established and welcome act for an aunt or uncle or of course a parent to start a savings account for a new addition to the next generation. It is not so common however, among the ...

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Are personal carer travel costs claimable? It depends

A recent court decision, and subsequent appeal, has ramifications for taxpayers with disabilities, and who are in need of a personal carer. The decision centres around what is or is not acceptable as ...

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The CGT implications of subdividing and building on the family property

Given the state of the property market in Australia these days, a not-uncommon situation can arise where a residential property owner seeks to demolish and subdivide the block containing the family ho...

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Rental property owners can get regular ATO attention on “initial repairs”

The ATO frequently re-focuses its attention on claims that investment property owners make for repairs to rental residences that it deems to in fact be “improvements”. The scenario where ...

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Getting deductions for clothing and laundry expenses right

The ATO allows certain taxpayers to claim a deduction for the cost of buying and cleaning occupation-specific clothing, items of protective wear and for certain unique, and usually distinctive, unifor...

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Gumtree or Facebook group sourced assets, and the realities of making a claim

A recent case before the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) brought into focus a growing phenomenon that you should keep in mind for work-related or business expense deduction claims, especially wh...

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Can salary sacrifice work for you?

Salary sacrifice can be a great way to get a part of your remuneration in a form other than cash – and not personally pay tax on it. Salary sacrifice (or salary packaging) is where you agree t...

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Share dividend income and franking credits

Mum and dad investors in receipt of dividends from their share portfolio often benefit from investing in blue chip shares because they usually have franking credits attached. As a general rule, an Au...

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Recent changes to the assets test for pensioners

From January 1, 2017, the assets test free area and taper rate for pensions increased. The assets test works by reducing a person’s age pension payment for every dollar of assets owned over a ce...

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Deceased estates: A brief guide to tying up the loose ends

After a person dies, and the usual arrangements are completed, there will come a time when other matters, such as tax and superannuation issues, must be looked after. The person who takes on the respo...

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How to get an Australian business number (ABN)

It’s not mandatory for a business to have an Australian business number (ABN), but there are a few good reasons why you should. Foremost among them will be that without one, your business will p...

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Substantiation for mobile, home phone and internet costs

The ATO has issued guidance on making claims for mobile phone use as well as home phone and internet expenses.  It says that if a taxpayer uses any of these for work purposes, they may be able to...

[Read more...]

Car salary packages and the deductibility of after-tax running costs

Including a car in a salary package is a popular remuneration arrangement, and doing so as part of a salary sacrifice package will often give rise the a “novated lease”.  Costs in ope...

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Shopping for a “luxury car”? Beware of the luxury car tax

You can judge whether a car is luxury or not, according to the government, if it costs more than $64,132 for 2016-17.    It's not an over-the-top s price tag if you're considering true luxu...

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