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The Pros & Cons Of A Partnership As A Business Structure

Posted by Anthony

If you’re looking to go into business with someone, the chances are that you might be looking at using a business structure known as a partnership. A partnership is a type of business structure that is made up of two or more people who distribute income or losses between themselves and is a fairly popular form of structure amongst those looking to develop a business. It offers ease and flexibility to run your business as individuals, eliminates the need to create a company structure and avoid reporting obligations. You’re also not going into creating a business by yourself, which can be an added bonus for some and reduces some of the initial financial burden and uncertainty of the setup. Just as there are advantages to choosing to set up a partnership, one must also examine the disadvantages. A partnership generally exists between two or more parties, so disagreements in management may occur, and decision-making may never be truly equal. It can be difficult to add or remove partners into and out of the partnership, and adding more partners can make the partnership more complex to manage. Partnerships also generally do not receive access to many government grants (barring special exemptions). […]

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Using A Corporate Trustee Instead Of Individuals For A Family Trust

Posted by Anthony

A family trust is a great structure.  It provides tax flexibility whilst giving you asset separation in two directions.  But what does asset separation in two directions mean? And why might we suggest it to you as a recommendation? First of all, why do you want asset separation? If there are multiple assets, you want to make sure that if someone makes a claim against the owner of a particular asset that your other assets can be quarantined from that claim. This isolation will mean that they can’t gain access to the assets that are yours and separate from the claim. If you own a business and have a successful financial claim made against your business where the claim is for an amount that is more than the assets of the business, you will first need to use the business to cover the claim, and then find something additional to supplement the shortfall. In this case, if you also own your own home, and its worth is enough to cover that shortfall, it may be used to meet the claim by combining the business assets’ worth and the family home’s value. You could lose your family home! However, if we […]

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Receive A Relief Or Support Payment? Here’s What You Need To Watch Out For This Tax Season

Posted by Anthony

Have you, over the course of the past financial year, received a government assistance payment, support payment or disaster relief supplement? There have been a number of cases where people who received financial assistance from the government were hit with additional owed tax to the ATO, due to their payments increasing their income threshold. When lodging your individual income tax return this year, you will need to declare certain Australian Government payments, pensions and allowances in your tax return. If you did not elect to pay tax on those payments, this could affect the payment received from your return (or mean that you actually owe money to the ATO). Some of the taxable payments that you may need to include in your tax return include: the age pension carer payment Austudy payment JobSeeker payment Youth allowance Defence Force income support allowance (DFISA) where the pension, payment or allowance to which it relates is taxable veteran payment invalidity service pension, if you have reached age-pension age disability support pension, if you have reached age-pension age income support supplement sickness allowance parenting payment (partnered) disaster recovery allowance (but not in relation to 2019–20 bushfires) Most of these pensions, payments and allowances will […]

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Choosing A Structure For Your Business: The Co-Operative Explained.

Posted by Anthony

Sometimes you might want to set up a structure where you will share in the spoils with everyone that deals with that structure.  There is a specific type of structure for this and it is known as a Co-Operative. A co-operative business structure (or co-op) is a legally incorporated business entity that is designed to serve the interests of its members. Co-operatives may be profit-sharing enterprises or not-for-profit organisations. A cooperative business serves members by providing goods and services that may be unavailable or too costly to access as individuals. There are two types of cooperatives that businesses can be set up as. Distributing cooperatives are able to distribute any annual profits to members of the cooperative. They are required to share the capital that they make, and members of this type of cooperative must own the minimum number of shares specified in the co-op’s rules. Non-distributing cooperatives cannot share their profits with members of the cooperative. All profits must further the cooperative’s purpose, and the cooperative may or may not issue shares to the members. Members may be charged a subscription fee if there is no share capital Some popular cooperatives business structures include: Consumer co-operatives, which buy and […]

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ATO Says Different Payments Will Have Different Tax Treatments.

Posted by Anthony

The ATO is looking to make tax season a little bit easier this year, particularly in light of the unique but significant challenges that Australians have been facing over the last year, and are continuing to face. If you received a financial assistance payment, grant or scheme package during the 2020 financial year, you need to be aware of your taxable requirements. There are different tax treatments for different payments that you may have received.    Jobkeeper Payments that were received from Jobkeeper as an employee will be automatically included in your income statement as either salary and wages, or as an allowance. Sole traders who have received a Jobkeeper payment on behalf of their business will need to include the payment as assessable income for the business.   Jobseeker All information will be included in your tax return (in the Government Payments & Allowances question) when ready. Lodging your return prior to the information being available will require you to add it yourself. Leaving out income will slow your return, so it is important to ensure that you have all of the information when lodging.   Stand Down Payments If you were the recipient of a one-off or regular […]

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Recent Changes To Your Superannuation That You Need To Know

Posted by Anthony

There were a few changes to superannuation that were passed by the Senate recently.   You can now use the bring-forward rule to make three years’ worth of non-concessional contributions (where you don’t claim a tax deduction) up until the age of 67.     Last year the rules had changed to permit a person to make non-concessional contributions up to the age of 67 but the use of the bring forward rule had stayed at an age limit of 65 years old, as it required a full Bill to be passed by both Houses of Parliament.     This new age limit will apply to contributions made on or after the 1st July 2020.  This is particularly good news for people that turned 67 during the year and utilised the three year bring forward rule in anticipation of the law being passed.   From the first quarter after receiving royal assent (most likely to occur from 1st July), Self Managed Superannuation Funds will be allowed to have up to six members.  The limit is currently four members. For larger families, this will be of particular use and relevance, as the parents involved in the fund may wish to include more than […]

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The ATO Warns Gig Economy Workers To Declare Their Income, Or Face Severe Penalties

Posted by Anthony

The inexpensive and profitable side hustle is under the ATO’s watchful eye when it comes to declaring income this tax season. With many gig economy workers often earning their income as independent contractors, the ATO warns that a failure to report all income from all of the work that they carry out could land them with severe penalties.    The ATO is expected to employ advanced data-matching from platforms that play host to large proportions of Australia’s gig economy to ensure that tax is declared and paid on the income from workers of the gig economy. Those workers may include Uber workers, Doordash, Lyft, Airbnb and many more similar side hustle income earners.   There is a silver lining for gig workers this tax time. Many gig economy workers may find themselves more eligible for tax deductions – but are warned against claiming more than they are allowed to.   Gig workers are eligible to claim deductions for most costs incurred while earning their income (such as travel or vehicle expenses, financing and marketing). These deductions, however, can only be claimed for the work-related proportion of the claim. You won’t be able to claim the whole amount for the deduction […]

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1 July 2021 Will See Super Guarantee Rate Rise

Posted by Anthony

Many years ago Julia Gillard’s government announced increases in the Superannuation Guarantee rate from 9% at the time, up to 12%.  The impact of the Global Financial Crisis has led subsequent governments to continually postpone these increases. So far, Australia has only received two increases, back in 2013 and 2014, when the superannuation rate went up to 9.5% over two years.  It has remained at 9.5% since 2014.   Now it is time for the next increase. This will happen on 1 July 2021 when the rate of superannuation that you have to pay for most of your employees will be 10% of their salary or wage instead of the current 9.5%.   For most employers that are using payroll software, this change will happen automatically. You should however confirm with your software provider (either directly or through someone like us) that this will happen to ensure that you remain compliant without needing further action.   For most employees, this will mean an extra 0.5% added to their current salary plus super.  But where an employee is on a contract where their salary is superannuation inclusive it could be that they will receive a corresponding reduction in their salary to […]

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High School Students, It’s Time To Get Creative About Tax & Super

Posted by Anthony

The ATO’s Tax, Super + You competition is a fun and engaging way for Australian high school students to learn about tax and super, unleash their creativity and potentially win some great prizes. Working as a part of a team or individually, students are invited to write, make or film an entry for their topic: * Junior (Year 7–9) are asked to highlight the value of tax or super (or both) in the community * Senior (Year 10–12) must discuss your first job and what you need to know about tax and super. Shortlisted entries in 2019 included raps, songs, animations, video skits and even a board game. If you’re a high school student interested in competing this year or are the parent of one, this resource is a great way to see how people have gotten involved previously (and that you can draw inspiration from as well). The competition opened on 24 May, but entries will be accepted until 13 August. The winners will be decided by a judging panel, including guest judge Effie Zahos who is one of Australia’s leading personal finance commentators. The public can also vote for their favourite entry in the People’s Choice Awards. Tax […]

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Your First Tax Return: What You Need To Know

Posted by Anthony

Tax return season is quickly approaching for individuals. You may need to begin thinking about the process sooner rather than later to ensure that you have everything ready for your accountant. If you’ve never had to complete a tax return before (and it’s your first time) or are still uncertain about what you need to do, this process can feel a bit like a Mount Everest you need to climb. Putting it simply, if you are earning or will earn more than $20,542 this year, you will need to lodge a tax return. However, if you haven’t made that amount but your employer has taken tax out of your pay, you should lodge a return anyway to receive some (if not most) of that money back. How much money you receive back from the tax return will be affected by how much income you have earned. Some debts (such as HECS or HELP) will begin to take money out of your return after reaching a certain income threshold level (currently set at $46,620). A tax return is where you report all of your income earned over the past financial year. It should include ATO-reported income (which you generally won’t have […]

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