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ATO launches Super Scheme Smart

Posted on September 29, 2016 by admin

The Australian Tax Office has launched a new initiative called Super Scheme Smart to help educate individuals about the pitfalls of certain retirement planning schemes and how to protect their retirement nest egg.

Each year the ATO discovers complex tax schemes and arrangements designed by promoters solely for the purpose of helping people avoid tax.

The office is currently seeing a number of schemes targeting Australians planning for their retirement. These schemes encourage individuals to channel money inappropriately through their self-managed superannuation fund (SMSF).

The penalties are substantial for those involved in deliberate tax avoidance schemes; an individual may well lose their right to be a trustee of their own super fund, or, in some cases, they could go to jail.

According to the ATO, individuals most at risk are those approaching retirement.

While the retirement planning schemes can vary, common features people should be aware of include schemes that:

– are artificially contrived with complex structures usually connecting with an existing or newly created SMSF

– involve a significant amount of paper shuffling

– are designed to give the taxpayer minimal or zero tax, or even a tax refund

– aim to give a present day tax benefit by adopting the arrangement

– invariably sound ‘too good to be true’, and as such they generally are

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Government increases cash flow support for businesses

Posted on March 27, 2020 by admin

The Australian Government has increased support for businesses to manage cash flow challenges under the ongoing COVID-19 circumstances.

The Boosting Cash Flow for Employers measure announced on 12 March 2020 will be increased to provide up to $100,000 for eligible small and medium-sized businesses. To be eligible employers must have been established prior to 12 March 2020 and have an aggregated annual turnover of less than $50 million and employ workers.

The measure will provide employers with a payment equal to 100% of the tax withheld from wages and salaries. This is a rise from the original 50%, with maximum payments being increased from $25,000 to $50,000 and minimum payments being increased from $2,000 to $10,000.

Employers will receive payments from 28 April 2020 from the ATO as automatic credit in the activity statement system upon lodging eligible upcoming activity statements.

Eligible businesses will be provided with an additional payment during July – October 2020. The payment will be equal to the total amount received under the Boosting Cash Flow for Businesses scheme. For monthly and quarterly activity statement lodgers, these payments will be provided as automatic credit in the activity statement system for each lodgement up until October 2020.

The Government has also introduced the Coronavirus SME Guarantee Scheme to support the flow of credit for small and medium enterprises (SME) by providing a guarantee of 50% to participating SME lenders for new unsecured loans that will be used for working capital. To be eligible, SMEs will have a turnover of up to $50 million and the loans must comply with the following terms:

The SME Guarantee Scheme will still require businesses to repay these loans and approval is subject to regular lending requirements. The Scheme will commence by early April 2020 and be available until 30 September 2020.

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