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Increased focus on SMSF compliance

The Australian Tax Office (ATO) is taking a more serious approach to SMSF non-compliance over the coming year.

The Tax Office has found that more than an acceptable number of SMSF trustees are lacking transparency and are operating of the system, i.e. not lodging SMSF annual tax returns and/or not undergoing an annual independent audit.

Compliance issues, such as regulatory contraventions reported through auditor contravention reports are a growing problem. The 2015 income year saw 22,000 auditor contravention reports reported for 8,200 funds.

The ATO is urging trustees to engage with the Tax Office by self-correcting and rectifying compliance issues through the early engagement and voluntary disclosure service and/or from targeted mail outs.

The Tax Office’s approach will focus on more intensive compliance activities and enforcement outcomes, especially for those trustees who:

Posted on 6 October '16 by , under Super.

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What to consider when consolidating your super

The ATO reported that 45% of working Australians were not aware that they had multiple super accounts in 2016. Having multiple super accounts is particularly common for individuals who have had more than one job. If this is you, it is important to identify and manage your super accounts because having more than one can be costly as a result of account fees from multiple funds.To combat this, you may want to consolidate your super, which moves all your super into one account. Not only does this save on fees, but it also makes your super easier to manage and keep track of.

Before consolidating your super, it is important to do the following:

Research your funds' policy
Compare your active super accounts so you can make the right choice about which one you should close. Things to assess include:

  • Exit fees
  • Insurance policies
  • Investment options
  • Ongoing service fees
  • Performance of the funds

Check employer contributions
Changing funds may affect how much your employer contributes, as some employers contribute more to certain funds. Check your current accounts to see if changing funds will affect this. Once you have selected a super fund, regardless of whether you choose a new super fund or one of your existing ones, provide your employer with the details they need to pay super into your selected account.

Gather the relevant information
When consolidating your super, you will need to have the following details ready:

  • Your tax file number.
  • Proof of identity. This could include your driver's license, birth certificate or passport.
  • Your fund's superannuation product identification number (SPIN).
  • Your fund's unique superannuation identifier (USI).
  • Details of your previous fund.

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