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Keeping you up to date

Update on last month's labour hire article!

In last month's newsletter, we reported on a new regime which affected employers who 'shared' employees across entities or businesses. Initially, we were concerned that many of our clients may be caught in this new legislation as the definitions of labour hire services and workers within the Act are very broad. We're pleased to advise that the Queensland Parliament has since published some regulations which clarify the scope and who might be captured by the legislation. Cooper Grace Ward Lawyers have put together a great article which explains it in further detail. Click here to read. If you have any questions or would like to clarify whether you might be caught by this, please contact our office.

How can a finance broker help you?

You hear it all the time – you’ve been loyal to the same bank for years. You need to refinance/arrange pre-approval for a purchase/review your line of credit and they aren’t playing nice. You’ve called the bank manager you’ve known for years and their hands are tied (or even worse, they’ve left!). So what can you do?

Read more ...

Single Touch Payroll comes into effect from 1 July 2018 - are you ready?

If you are an employer with 20 or more employees, from 1 July 2018 you will need to report your employee's payroll information to the ATO through Single Touch Payroll (STP). STP means that information such as wages, deductions, PAYG and superannuation will be immediately transmitted through to the ATO each time your run a payroll process. Not sure what you need to do to get ready?

Read more ...

Did you know that your casual employees may be entitled to super?

Employing staff can mean a minefield of legislation to get your head around. Some of the most common misconceptions are generally around super – and who you are required to pay super to. And it may come as a shock to some employers that casual employees may be entitled to super payments.

The ATO has recently released some guidance to assist employees to determine whether they need to pay super to their casual employees, including those under the age of 18.  Essentially, if you pay your employee more than $450 (before tax) in a month, then super will apply. For those casual employees that are under 18, if they work for more than 30 hours each week they too are entitled to be paid super.

For further information, please click here – or contact your accountant who will be able to assist you in determining what your obligations are.

Do you 'share' employees across entities or businesses?

From 16 April, 2018 the Labour Hire Licensing Act 2017 will come into effect. This is a mandatory licensing scheme which has been designed to protect labour hire workers in Queensland from exploitation. Why are we telling you about this? Think that you’re NOT in the labour hire business? You may be surprised!!

Read more ...

TFN Declaration Forms now available on-line

You’ve hired a new employee – and there’s a lot of paperwork you need to complete. The ATO is making life easier and has recently launched a new electronic Tax File Number (TFN) Declaration. Simply get your new employees to fill it out on-line, print and sign it and return it to you so that you can lodge it with the ATO.

Click here to download.

GST Changes to New Residential Premises

The Building and Construction industry seems to have changes coming at it from everywhere at the moment!

You may have heard that the government last year announced its intention to make changes that would require purchasers of new residential premises and home sites  to remit the GST directly to the ATO.  In the past GST was included in the price and paid at settlement to the vendor.

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Tax Office visits to cash only businesses

We all do the right thing and pay our fair share of tax don’t we? Unfortunately, not everyone feels that they should. The latest ATO blitz is focused on flushing out businesses who operate in a cash only or ‘hidden economy’. And given the advances in technology, the ATO has more resources than ever to data match and identify areas of ‘concern’- and they are out and about visiting high risk businesses.

Some key factors that may trigger a ‘visit’ are:

Read more ...

SMSF - Real Time Reporting

After much debate the decision on real time reporting for Self-Managed Super Funds (SMSFs) has finally been announced.

The outcome is that funds that have a member who has a balance of $1M or more will now be required to report to the ATO quarterly with details of any transactions that impact any members Transfer Balance Cap.  This includes the commencement of pensions, lump sum withdrawals from pensions, rollovers as well as a number of other less common transactions.  The due date for the report will be 28 days after the end of the quarter the event took place in.  So if you commence a pension on say 15th November you must report this on the December quarterly report, due 28 January.

Read more ...

FBT Time

It’s that time of year again when businesses that provide benefits to employees need to consider the Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) implications.

If we are aware that FBT may be relevant to your business, you will shortly receive an annual questionnaire to help you consider your situation and whether you need to take any steps now to minimise the FBT.

However, if your business provides any non-cash benefits (think cars, loans, phone etc) to employees, and you don’t receive a letter from us within the next couple of days then please contact our office immediately.  

For those businesses that own cars, it is important to ensure you record your odometer reading on 31 March 2018.  There are instructions in our letter to you to assist with this.

If you are unsure whether FBT applies to you or you need assistance with your FBT please give us a call.

Simpler BAS

It is meant to make reporting business income to the ATO easier, but Simpler BAS appears to be creating some confusion for taxpayers.

From July 1, the ATO changed its requirements so that businesses with a turnover of less than $10M had reduced BAS reporting requirements. You may have noticed that your software and the ATO portal have been updated so that you are only required to provide information in the following fields:

  • G1 – Total sales
  • 1A – GST on sales
  • 1B – GST on purchases

You are no longer required to provide information on export sales, GST-free sales, capital purchases and non-capital purchases.

Read more ...

Are you a US Citizen or Green Card holder?

The media has given a great deal of attention to the US Government’s proposed tax changes in recent weeks, including the one-off ‘deemed repatriation tax’. This tax was aimed at big businesses such as Apple and Google – but did you know that it may also capture US citizens who own more than 10% of a foreign company?

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Own land in Queensland? Do you pay land tax?

Land Tax is payable where you own land over a certain value and is determined based on assets held at midnight on 30 June each year.  The value is based on the unimproved land value (which is also used to calculate rates).  If you own more than one property the values are aggregated.  There are exceptions, including for the primary residence. So what do you need to know?

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Changes to the ATO Super Clearing House

Do you currently use the ATO Small Business Superannuation Clearing House (SBSCH) to pay your employee’s superannuation? If so, are you aware of the changes that have been made to this service?

As of February 26, you can only access this service via your ATO Business Portal.

What if I don’t have an ATO Business Portal?

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Are you a Director? Do you really want the responsibility?

Many of us are directors of the private companies we operate.  It is often a necessity of being in business.  But do you realise being a director comes with serious responsibilities?  For most of us, our businesses run day to day without a hitch.  We pay our bills when they fall due and otherwise act within the constraints of the law. 

However, sometimes things can go wrong so it’s important to make sure you understand the risk, and do everything you can to mitigate your liability.

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Are you complying with the Notifiable Data Breach Scheme?

Have you heard about the Notifiable Data Breach (NDB) scheme? Do you know what it is and how it may affect you?

The NDB scheme came into effect on February 22 and is an amendment to the Privacy Act. Essentially, if data has been breached that is likely to result in serious harm, there are certain reporting obligations that an organisation is now required to adhere to, which include notifying:  

  1. the individual whose personal information has been breached
  2. the Australian Information Commission of the breach

Read more ...

When is a contractor not a contractor?

The current OSR Payroll Tax audit activity (read our payroll tax article) prompts us to once again recommend all businesses to review the arrangements they have with their contractors.  Contractors are not just an issue for Payroll Tax purposes.  They also need to be considered for Superannuation, WorkCover, PAYG Withholding  AND FairWork purposes!

Unfortunately, the definitions used for each of these calculations can be vastly different. And given that each of these issues are enforced by a different regulatory body means you need to be across them all.  We recommend that it is best practice to review your contractor arrangements at least annually.

If you need assistance reviewing your arrangements, contact us and we can help guide you through the minefield!

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.