Latest News

Keeping you up to date

They'll pay you back, right?

Picture this - a loved one needs some financial assistance and you’re in the position to help so you offer to loan them some money. They solemnly promise to repay you and you believe them. They’re family so you don’t think there’s any need to get legal documents drawn up – and besides, you trust that they will do the right thing. But what happens if they don’t?

Read more ...

Do you have an SMSF and are currently taking a pension?

As you are all no doubt aware, significant changes to superannuation occurred recently. We touched base with all of our Self-Managed Super Fund (SMSF) clients prior to the end of the financial year with details of what they were required to do at that time (if anything). So what’s the next step?

We now need to consider how our SMSF clients manage their pensions in the future. Trustees of SMSF’s will shortly receive a letter from us providing information on what the new rules are. We ask that you take the time to read through these thoroughly as your decisions may have a significant impact on the tax payable by your SMSF future years.

If you have any concerns about how this might affect your super fund, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Reduction in Small Business Company tax rate

Great news! The government has finally legislated the change in company tax rates - and it applies from 1 July 2016!

This means that small businesses - defined for the 2017 year as businesses with a turnover of less than $10M - will now have a company tax rate of 27.5%.

For all other companies, including those that are not in business, the tax rate will remain at 30%.

For further information, please click here.

If you have questions regarding how this might affect you, please contact our office.

Xero multiple file discount

Do you have more than one Xero business edition file hosted through us? If so, we’ve got great news! We’re very pleased to announce that anyone with multiple files will now be eligible for 15% off each file. This discount will be applied to your next invoice which will be sent in the coming days. Happy days!

ASIC scam emails

Scam emails are commonplace nowadays. You can usually spot them a mile off by their less than professional look and bad spelling. But these scammers are getting more and more savvy. In our office, we have state of the art spam protection and filters and yet we still have some spam that slips through.

We’ve had 2 such instances recently which highlight the importance of being vigilant and not clicking on any emails that you aren’t 100% sure about.

Read more ...

SMSF processing....

 A well-known financial commentator recently suggested that the Trustees of a Self-Managed Super Fund (SMSF) might be better off using a SMSF only ‘administrator’ rather than their accountant to administer their fund. Their argument was that it was cheaper and just as efficient. But is that necessarily the case? And is that the only important thing to consider when selecting an administrator?

We’ve put together what we consider to be a list of the main differences that we as accountants can provide when compared to a SMSF ‘administration’ only service:

Read more ...

Do you or someone you know have a HECS debt and live overseas?

The ATO has reminded individuals that they must repay their Higher Education Loan Program (HELP, formerly known as HECS) and Trade Support Loans (TSL) even if they live overseas and are not an Australian resident for tax purposes!

So if you live and work overseas and earn worldwide income that exceeds the minimum HELP and TSL repayment thresholds, you will be required to make repayments against your loan.

For further information, please click here.

Have you heard about the Job Active program?

Are you looking for a young person to join your business as a new team member? Want to trial them before employing them? The Government has recently announced a new Youth Jobs PaTH program whereby you can provide an internship for a person aged between 17 and 24 to see if you think they will be an asset to your team.

It doesn’t cost you anything but your time – it’s essentially supervised work experience – in fact you will receive a payment of $1,000 to help cover your costs. And if it does work out, you may be eligible for a wage subsidy of up to $10,000. Interested? To find out more, please click here.

ATO crackdown on work related expenses

In the 2015/16 financial year, over $8 Billion of work-related car expenses were claimed by taxpayers. A “significant portion” of these claims were at the limit of requiring detailed records and this has raised a flag to the ATO. They’ve announced that they will be paying “close attention” to these claims.

When making any tax related claim, the onus of proof is always on the tax payer. If asked, you need to be able to substantiate your claims with detailed records – and that is why we always ask for supporting documentation to confirm your eligibility for a claim.

So be aware, car-related expenses are on the ATOs radar.

For further information on what you can claim, please click here, or contact your accountant.

Super changes coming into effect from 1 July that everyone needs to be aware of

There’s been a lot of talk around super changes that affect people who have balances over $1.6M, or who are taking a transition to retirement pension - but there are also some other changes that we all need to be aware of. These include:

These are just a few of the changes that might affect you. For the full list, please click here. If you have any questions about these changes and how they might affect you, please don’t hesitate to contact our office.

Do you employ staff? Do you make your SG payments on time?

The ATO has advised that it will be increasing its “proactive” management of super guarantee reviews and audits in this financial year. And with the increase in real-time software usage and data matching between agencies such as banks and super funds, it is now easier for the ATO to receive better and more timely information – meaning that any late lodgements or breaches are more readily identifiable.

What does this mean for you?

Read more ...

First there was SuperStream. Next there is Single Touch Payroll!

Over the last couple of years we’ve seen technology change at a rapid rate – and the Government and the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) are working with software providers to keep up the pace. Another new initiative that is heading our way is Single Touch Payroll. So what is it, and what does it mean for you?

Read more ...

Are you a company Director or Secretary?

Are you a Director or Secretary of a Company? Are you aware of what your obligations are? There are some pretty heavy penalties for breaching your obligations so it’s important to ensure you are across them all. We recommend revisiting these obligations regularly so that you aren’t inadvertently breaching them.

ASIC has some great information about what these requirements are, as well as a video which explains some of the things you need to consider. Click here to read more.

What happened to Bruce?

If you've visited our offices lately, you may have noticed a 'new' business located on the ground floor. In January this year, the financial planning arm of PWA Financial Services was moved to InFocus' Maroochydore office. This has allowed Bruce Baynes and his team to specialise in the very niche area of providing advice in the aged care arena - and PWA Financial Services has recently rebranded to become Sage Care Advice.

Read more ...

Are you eligible for the $20K instant asset write-off?

Are you a small business with a turnover of less than $10 million? Did you know that the Government provided an extension of the 2015-16 budget measure so that you can write off eligible assets costing less than $20,000 up until 30 June 2018?  Click here for further information.

However, we’d only recommend using this for purchases you genuinely need. There’s no point spending money just so you can access this deduction. So, if you’re considering using this initiative, please contact our office PRIOR to making the purchase and we can help you ascertain if it’s in the best interest of your business.

Thinking of starting a business?

According to demographer Bernard Salt, the Sunshine Coast is the entrepreneurship capital of Australia so it's not surprising that we see a lot of new businesses starting up. Being a business owner is a lot more than just having a great idea and some funds with which to run with it. So getting the right information early on can save you heartache in the long run.

Read more ...

Have you heard about the Small Business Digital Grants program?

The Queensland Government is currently offering a Small Business Digital Grant for up to $10,000. The aim of this grant is to enhance the digital capabilities of small businesses which will enable them to be more competitive and ultimately employ more staff. The funding is for such things as the purchase of new hardware, software and digital coaching. Interested? Click here to find out more.

General Advice

The information provided by Bentleys (Sunshine Coast) Pty Ltd does not constitute financial product advice and is for general information only. It is written without taking into account any individuals personal objectives, situation or needs, and is not intended as professional advice. Any person acting upon such information without receiving specific advice, does so entirely at their own risk. Please contact your Accountant to discuss your personal situation before relying on this information.