The Government handed down the 2019/20 Federal Budget on Tuesday 2 April 2019.
Some of the important proposals include:
– Increasing the instant asset write-off threshold from $25,000 to $30,000.
– Making the instant asset write-off available to medium sized businesses (with aggregated annual turnover of $10 million or more, but less than $50 million).
The legislation to make the above changes to the instant asset write-off has already been passed and received Royal Assent.
– make voluntary superannuation contributions (both concessional and non-concessional) without meeting the work test from 1 July 2020; and
– make up to three years of non-concessional contributions under the bring-forward rule (without satisfying the work test).
The ATO has reminded businesses that provide road freight, information technology (‘IT’), security, investigation, or surveillance services that they need to lodge a Taxable payments annual report (‘TPAR’) each year to tell the ATO about the payments they make to contractors who use an Australian business number (‘ABN’) (even if these services are only part of their business activities).
Such clients’ first TPAR will be due by 28 August 2020 for payments made from 1 July 2019 to 30 June 2020.
Affected clients will need to keep records of the payments made to contractors. The required information, including the contractor’s ABN, name, address, and total amounts paid during the financial year (including GST) will normally be contained in the invoices received from the contractors.
The ATO is warning that scammers have adopted ‘Robocall’ technology to target taxpayers across the country.
Assistant Commissioner Gavin Siebert said: “Scammers are sending pre-recorded messages in record numbers and are manipulating caller identification so that your phone displays a legitimate ATO phone number despite coming from an overseas scammer”.
“If the scammers do make contact, they will request payment of a tax debt – usually through unusual methods like bitcoin, gift cards and vouchers. Legitimate ways to pay your tax debt are listed on our website. The scammers will threaten you with immediate arrest, attempt to keep you on the line until payment is made and may become rude or aggressive.”
The technique of displaying misleading phone numbers is known as “spoofing” and is commonly used by scammers in an attempt to make their interactions with taxpayers appear legitimate.
The ATO has updated its list of ‘What attracts our attention’, with six items that specifically relate to fringe benefits tax (‘FBT’), as follows:
– significantly discounting market valuations;
– using non-commercial parking rates; or
– parking rates not being supported by adequate evidence.
The exemption threshold for the FBT year commencing 1 April 2019 is $8,714 (up from the amount of $8,552 that applied in the previous year).
The benchmark interest rate for the FBT year commencing on 1 April 2019 is 5.37% per annum (up from the rate of 5.20% that applied for the previous FBT year).
This rate is used to calculate the taxable value of:
On 1 April 2019 an employer lends an employee $50,000 for five years at an interest rate of 5% p.a. with interest charged and paid six-monthly, and no principal being repaid until the end of the loan.
The actual interest payable by the employee for the current year is $2,500 (i.e., $50,000 x 5%).
However, the notional interest, with a 5.37% benchmark rate, is $2,685, so the taxable value is $185 (i.e., $2,685 – $2,500).
Please Note: Many of the comments in this publication are general in nature and anyone intending to apply the information to practical circumstances should seek professional advice to independently verify their interpretation and the information’s applicability to their particular circumstances.Tags: budget, FBT, scammers, TPAR
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