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Christmas giving (tax free!)

The holiday season is a great time to think about giving a little back to those less fortunate than you, and many Australians will make charitable donations. In Australia, charitable donations are tax deductible, which only adds to the incentive to be generous this year.

A recent global survey of charitable giving across the world has shown that countries that award taxpayers benefits for donations report much higher rates of donations per capita.

Here are some tips for maximising your tax breaks on donations tis year:

1. Make sure that the charity that you donate to has tax-exempt status from the ATO
2. Keep your receipts! You may need it if you are audited
3. If you are making a large donation, discuss the tax implications with your accountant, just to be on the safe side
4. Remember that you can only claim gifts as a tax deduction. This means that if you have received anything in return for your donation, for example, a raffle ticket or trinket, you may not be able to claim the deduction.

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News

SMSFs: beware of illegal early super release

July 13, 2018

The Australian Tax Office (ATO) is reminding self-managed super fund (SMSF) trustees to beware of allowing members to access their super early.

A self-managed super fund (SMSF) trustee must meet a condition of release before any funds can legally be released.

The ATO can issue severe penalties if you or a SMSF member access your super before you are legally entitled to do so.

Some consequences of getting caught up in an illegal super scheme include the disqualification of trustees, imposition of administrative penalties, the fund being made non-complying and prosecution.

The Tax Office encourages those members who have been involved in an illegal super scheme to contact them immediately. The ATO will review your voluntary disclosure and take your circumstances into account when determining any penalties.