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Self managed super fund audits

All SMSFs are subject to annual audit requirements.  Audits are an essential tool in maintaining the health and integrity of the SMSF system.

The role of an auditor is to:

-conduct a financial and compliance audit of a SMSFs operation for the income year

-give the trustees an audit report in the correct form within the specified time period

-advise the ATO of any reportable contraventions

It is the responsibility of the SMSF auditor to ensure their independence from the fund and to not accept work in which they have a personal or business relationship with the fun, or trustees.

There is a big cost variance in audit providers. It is important to be wary of low-cost auditors as their private financial information may be heading offshore. If trustees want their audit done in Australia, they should ensure that their audit provider does not outsource.

All auditors had to register with the ASIC by 1 July 2013 to continue auditing SMSFs.  As well as registering auditors need to satisfy their professional body requirements such as doing professional development courses and having insurance. Not all accountants are able to perform SMSF audits.

Posted on 16 January '14 by , under Super.

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Transition to retirement

The transition to retirement (TTR) strategy allows you to access some of your super while you continue to work.

You are able to use the TTR strategy if you are aged 55 to 60. You can use it to supplement your income if you reduce your work hours or boost your super and save on tax while you keep working full time.

  • Starting a TTR pension: To start your TTR pension, transfer some of your super to an account-based pension. You have to keep some money in your super account so that you can continue to receive your employer's compulsory contributions as well as any voluntary contributions you may be making.
  • Government benefits and TTR: The benefits you or your partner receive might be impacted if you choose to opt for this strategy. How and what exactly will change might become clearer upon discussing this with a Financial Information Service (FIS) officer.
  • Life insurance and TTR: In some cases, the life insurance cover you have with your super may stop or reduce if you start a TTR pension – check this before making any decisions or changes.

TTR can help ease your mind as you transition into retirement but it can be a bit complex. Before you choose whether you want to use TTR to reduce work hours or save on tax, or even if you want to use TTR altogether, you should figure out how this will impact all aspects of your finances.

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