­

Get Super Stream Ready

Small employers (19 or fewer employees) must meet the Superstream standard by 30th June 2016.
If the only contributions you make are personal contributions for yourself or contributions to a related self-managed super fund (SMSF), you don’t need to use Superstream.

Choose an Option

To use SuperStream, you need to pay super and send employee information electronically. If you’re already doing this, you may only need to refine your system to send the contribution data in the standard format. You can use either:

  1. A Payroll system that meets the Super Stream Standard ie: Xero or MYOB are some examples. OR
  2. Your super fund’s online system. Large super funds have online payment services you can use. Check with your fund. OR
  3. Super clearing house
    •  A clearing house pays super to your employees’ funds for you. You send a single electronic payment to the clearing house, together with the contribution data for all your
      employees, and the clearing house does the rest.
    • If you have 19 or fewer employees, or a turnover of less than $2 million a year, you can use the ATO free Small Business Superannuation Clearing House
    •  You can also choose from several commercial options, or your super fund may have a clearing house you can use. Talk to your fund to see what they offer. OR
  4. Messaging Portal
    A messaging portal can convert contribution data for your employees to a SuperStream compliant format and send it to the relevant funds for you. You still need to make one
    electronic payment. Talk to your messaging portal provider and financial institution.

Collect Information and Update your records

To use SuperStream you’ll need to ensure you have the following information from your employees, in addition to the information you already use to pay super.

  • Employee tax File Number
  • Super Fund ABN
  • Super Fund USI (from their Super statement or calling the Super Fund)

Once you have this information, enter it into your system, along with the other details you use to pay super, and you’re ready to use SuperStream.
New employees who choose their super fund will fill out a standard choice form, which will have all the information you need..
If your employees have a self-managed super fund (SMSF), they need to give you slightly different information:

  • Employee tax File Number
  • Super Fund ABN
  • Super Fund bank account details
  • Fund Electronic Service Address

Use Super Stream

Start using SuperStream as soon as possible. Employers with 19 or fewer employees should be SuperStream ready by 30 June 2016 (larger employers should already be using SuperStream).
If you’re using a clearing house, check how long they will take to send the money and information to the super fund. Generally an employee’s super contribution is counted as being paid on the date the fund receives it, not the date a clearing house receives it from you.
It’s still up to you to meet your super guarantee obligations by the due dates.

Rental Property Claims that are often Misunderstood

The Tax Office has found that there are some landlords who may not be entirely sure about whether they are correctly claiming their property rental deductions. In particular, it has found that many property investors are making simple mistakes that could be avoided with little guidance.

 

There are some expenses that you will need to you deduct over a number of years as a landlord.

These can include:

  • borrowing expenses – including loan establishment fees, title searches, costs for preparing and filing mortgage broker fees and stamp duty charged on the mortgage. If you take out an insurance policy to cover the loan in case you cannot meet repayments, these premiums are not deductable. Landlord insurance premiums can however be deducted.
  • amounts for decline in the value of depreciating assets such as air conditioners, heaters, hot water systems, vacuum cleaners, dishwashers, clothes dryers, and so forth.
  • capital works deductions – deductions for certain types of construction like the reconstruction of a garage destroyed by fire where work constitutes a structural improvement to the rental property.

 

The amount of time these expenses are spread across depends on the type of expense. For instance, a loan expenses is spread over the lessor of five years or the life of the loan under special rules. Assets that depreciate in value do so over their “effective” life and certain construction work deductions may spread across 40 years.

For information of all claimable and non – claimable rental property expenses, contact us for information.

Data Matching – property sales and rental income

 

The ATO has advised that it is continuing its ongoing “Real property transactions 1985-2017 data matching program protocol”

It is undertaking this program to basically ensure that taxpayers are correctly meeting taxation obligations in relation to their dealings with real property, i.e., CGT on property sales and income tax on rental income.

For the period 20 September 1985 to 30 June 2017, data will be obtained from all State and Territory Revenue authorities.

 

Number of Records

 

It is estimated the total number of records that will be obtained is:

  • Rental bond authorities – 1 million records for each year; and
  • Revenue and land titles offices – approximately 30 million records for each year

 

Based on current data holding, it is estimated these records identify approximately 11.3 million unique individuals

 

Ref: ATO website – Real property transactions 1985-2017 data matching programme protocol

 

Clients need to be aware that the ATO does work behind the scenes checking rental property deductions, such as interest, rates, capital deductions, etc.

 

If you need any assistance with interest deductions /rates and / or capital allowance claims, please contact us.

20K Business Incentive making it work for you.

Have you taken advantage of the Governments $20,000 asset write – off for small business?

If your answer is No- then you need to speak to us find out how the Government initiative can benefit your business.

If you are and incorporated or non- incorporated small business you are able to take advantage of this offer- the only difference is the tax treatment of your purchase. Business or sole traders purchasing new or used items outright will get money back for the items, as a tax write down. Essentially, the purchase price of the asset, reduces the taxable income for the financial year in which it is purchased. This is not a one-off deal. The savings apply every time a new asset is acquired for your business under $20 K.

This is available to companies with less than $2m annual turnover.

What can I buy?

Any item that is a depreciating business asset including: cars, tools, machinery, computers, equipment and office furniture.

Available until June 30, 2017.

We can assist you with any investment.

FBT and work related electronic devices etc.

The Government has extended the FBT exemption with respect to eligible work-related items that are provided by small business entity employers to their employees. These changes apply from 1 April 2016 (i.e. from the commencement of the 2017 FBT year).

Under the changes, small business entity (‘SBE”) employers will not be limited to providing one eligible work-related item that is a ‘portable electronic device’ (e.g.; laptop computer) to an employee per FBT year (as an expense payment or property benefit) where the items have a ‘substantially identical function’.

So if you are an employee of an SBE, you can package a hybrid laptop computer (detachable screen) and a laptop in the same FBT year or a smart phone and phablet, from 1 April 2016.

FBT WARNING – ‘Work- related use test’ continues to apply.

The exemption under S.58X will still only apply where the item is primarily for use in the employee’s employment.

Withholding tax for car allowances:

The ATO has reminded tax practitioners that from 1 July 2015, car expense deductions for individuals were simplified.

Prior to 1 July 2015, there were four methods for claiming car expenses:

  • Cents per kilometre – capped at 5,000 kms
  • Logbook – unlimited kms
  • 12% original value
  • One- third of actual expenses.

To simplify the rules, from 1 July 2015, the government abolished the one-third of actual expenses method and 12% of original value method.

The cents per kilometre method (with the existing 5,000 km cap) and the logbook method (with unlimited kms) remain.

The cents per kilometre method has been simplified to use standard rate of 66 cents per kilometre for the 2015/16 income year, rather than a rate based on the engine size of the car. The Commissioner will set the rate for the future income years.

Employers should be aware that the ATO set the approved pay as you go withholding rate for cent per kilometre car allowances at 66 cents per kilometre from 1 July 2015.

Employers should withhold from any amount above 66 cents for all future payments of a car allowance.

Failure to do so may result in the employee having a tax liability when they lodge their tax return.

Employees, who from 1 July 2015 have been paid car allowance at a rate higher than the new approved amount, should consider whether they need to increase their withholding to avoid any tax liability at the end of the year.

Ref: ATO website – Withholding tax for car allowances

Should you use an Accountant to help with your tax return

Some common questions people often ask themselves about whether you should use an accountant to help with your tax return:

  1. How complicated is your tax return likely to be?
  2. Are you prepared to take full responsibility for your tax return?
  3. Would it be cost and time efficient to hire an accountant?

We offer an obligation free consultation, contact us today to make an appointment

Free Coffee on us

WHEN WE COMPLETE YOUR TAX RETURN, LIKE US ON FACEBOOK, AND RECEIVE A FREE COFFEE ON US