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Keeping you up to date

Foreign tax: the new norm

The global world we live in today means many more of us have dual residency, live in another country for part of each year, have a spouse from abroad, or maybe even earn income from foreign work or investment.  Because of this more and more Australian taxpayers are being faced with a complex maze of foreign tax requirements.

To find out whether foreign tax laws apply to you, you first need to determine whether you are an Australian or foreign resident for tax purposes. Tax residency is important because it is the basis for calculating your tax.

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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.

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.

Welcome to Brendon!

We would like to give a warm welcome to the newest member of our team - Brendon Murray.

Brendon has previously been a Partner in the Business Services division of our Brisbane office and has been with the Bentleys network since 2002.  Having worked closely with our Sunshine Coast office over the last 12 months, he’s finally made the leap to join our team. Brendon has extensive experience in providing business and structuring advice to clients and will work closely with Peta to provide high level technical advice to our clients.

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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?

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The truth about occupational fraud may surprise you

The Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE) has provided insight into the world of occupational fraud in their 2016 Global Fraud Study, Report to the Nations on Occupational Fraud and Abuse.

The Study estimates that the typical organisation loses 5% of annual revenues to the hands of fraud, with the median loss from a single case being $150,000.

So who is most likely to commit fraud within an organisation?

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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.

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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.

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2017 New Year's Resolutions

Love them or hate them, keep them or break them….many people choose the New Year to set some goals for the next 12 months.  And while goals are great to have, they are of no use unless you follow through with action - and track your results. The ASIC Moneysmart website has some great tools to assist you to manage this process. They have budget planners, savings planners, goal tracking apps and handy hints to help you achieve your aims. To find out more please click here. Or if you feel you’d like a more personalised plan, feel free to contact our office and we can tailor something especially for you.

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.

Do you employ working holiday makers?

Taxing working holiday makers has almost received as much press as the new super rules over the last couple of months.

The government finally made a decision on this so if you hire, or a looking to hire, working holiday makers make sure you check out the ATO's Information first so you withhold the correct amount of tax.  These rules take effect on 1 January 2017.

Plan for future business success

Jeff Immelt, the CEO of General Electric, once said that he has only two items in his job description:  One is to retire with the value of the company exceeding that when he took over and the other is to find a successor.

Succession planning acknowledges that your team members will not be with a business indefinitely. It provides a plan and process for addressing the changes that will occur when they leave.

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You've asked, they've listened! Simpler BAS!

Great news for small businesses! From 1 July 2017, small businesses will have reduced reporting requirements for their Business Activity Statements (BAS). You will only need to report GST on sales, GST on purchases and total sales. No more having to include GST free sales, Capital and non-capital purchase or export sales.

The ATO believe that this will result in ‘significant time and cost savings’. They are currently working with software developers to include these changes in future software updates.

For further information please click here.

It's that time of Christmas parties, gifts, entertainment...

Christmas parties can be great fun, as long as you don’t let Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) ruin the party. If not managed correctly, FBT can lead to unnecessary tax bills. 

If you are not sure which of the benefits you provide to your employees are subject to FBT then check out the ATO’s guide to make it easier to work out whether you have an issue to consider. Click here for further information.

As always, if you have any questions regarding how this might apply to your business, please feel free to give us a call.

Is the Government about to increase the budget for ATO Superannuation Guarantee Audits?

Superannuation….it’s an important cost that needs to be factored into a business’ cashflow when they employ staff.  But too often we hear of businesses folding, only to owe their employees their superannuation guarantee (SG) entitlements.

The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia has recommended that the government provide an additional $10million of funding to conduct SG audits so that in the event of insolvency or bankruptcy, affected employees could receive the maximum possible recovery of these entitlements.

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New superannuation rules - what do they mean for you?

There has been plenty of media attention given to the new super rules that were legislated last month. Interestingly, most of the rules will only affect around 4% of the population, so the vast majority of us will not see any changes.

For those people (un)lucky enough to be in the 4% impacted by these new rules, the good news is that we have until the end of the financial year to consider the impact it will have for you and the options available to best manage the changes.  This is because the commencement date for the majority of the changes is 1 July 2017.

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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.