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taxInsight - 2013/01 – May

2013/01 – May from taxInsight

Australian’s overseas: Foreign tax, Medicare and Flood levies

Tax laws have been changed to allow Foreign Income Tax Offsets to be applied against the Medicare levy, Medicare levy surcharge and Flood levy with effect from the 2008-09 income tax year. This could be of substantial benefit for professionals that remain Australian tax residents whilst working overseas for a period of time. Previously, the Tax Office said that your foreign income tax offsets could only be applied to the income tax component and not to these levies. This caused a very unfair circumstance where people working overseas that remained Australian tax residents were required to continue to pay these levies, in […]

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Working director terminated: Genuine Redundancy?

Where the termination of employment is deemed a “Genuine Redundancy” under the tax rules, payments that the employee receives for the termination that exceed the amount that would be received after a voluntary resignation get special, reduced tax treatment. A Base Amount and a further Service Amount for each Year Of Service may be entirely tax-free!  For the 2013 income year, the base amount is $8,806 and the service amount for each year of service is $4,404.  Accordingly, and as an example, the tax-free limit for a Genuine Redundancy payment where there is ten years of service would be: $8,806 […]

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Data matching – Pensioners

In January, the Tax Office announced a new data-matching program to target people receiving tax-free pensions from Centrelink and the Department of Veterans’ Affairs for the 2011 and 2012 income years. In total, the records of 1.8 million individuals held on Government Computers will be matched against the Tax Office records of names, addresses etc to check whether tax obligations and claims for dependent tax offsets are correct.

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Data Matching – Council contractors

Businesses providing contractor services to Councils in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania during the 2011 and 2012 income years will be subject to data matching undertaken by the Tax Office. The Tax Office expects to electronically match details of 20,500 taxpayers to check whether all tax payment and lodgement obligations have been met. Careful review of BAS, tax return and other ATO details may be appropriate.

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Agricultural land tax exemption refused by NSW Court

The NSW Supreme Court refused an exemption from NSW land tax for the owners of land in NSW that was used for cattle grazing with a herd of up to 40 cattle because the Court concluded that the farming operations did not have sufficient commercial purpose or character.

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