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ATO auditing SMSF auditors: a warning to advisers

By Daniel Butler, Director ([email protected]), DBA Lawyers Overview The ATO has recently updated its approved SMSF auditor checklist. This checklist sets certain minimum expectations of auditors and is used by the ATO when reviewing an auditor’s competency. This checklist can be found at https://www.ato.gov.au/assets/0/104/2244/2335/9c29ecc7-c31a-4253-b1ae-9fecbb45d252.pdf. The professional obligations of SMSF auditors are contained in Part 16 [read more]

SMSF investment strategies –– are they a financial product?

SMSF investment strategies –– are they a financial product?

Daniel Butler, Director ([email protected]), and Bryce Figot, Special Counsel ([email protected]), DBA Lawyers Many advisers do not foresee the potential flow-on legal consequences from merely providing an investment strategy template to an SMSF client. Indeed, many believe they are merely assisting their client particularly to ensure the SMSF will have the necessary paperwork to survive an [read more]

Investment strategies –– what SMSF trustees must do

Investment strategies –– what SMSF trustees must do

Daniel Butler, Director ([email protected]), and Bryce Figot, Special Counsel ([email protected]), DBA Lawyers This article provides some background and some key points to SMSF investment strategies. What is an investment strategy? An investment strategy is a plan for making, holding and realising assets consistent with the investment objectives adopted by an SMSF trustee. An investment strategy [read more]

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How the Federal Budget 2018 will impact SMSFs

Daniel Butler ([email protected]), Director, DBA Lawyers We outline below the key superannuation changes announced in the Federal Budget 2018 on 8 May 2018. Some of the proposed changes will have a substantial impact on SMSFs if they are finalised as law. Nomination of superannuation guarantee (‘SG’) for certain employees with multiple employers Broadly, members with [read more]

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ATO compliance action penalties for SMSFs

By Daniel Butler, Director, DBA Lawyers This article looks at the actions and penalties the ATO can impose on trustees of self managed superannuation funds (‘SMSF’). In 2014, a new regime added the following compliance powers to the ATO’s arsenal: Education directions Rectification directions Administrative penalties In addition to the above, the ATO has the [read more]

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Check your market linked pension strategy!

By: Daniel Butler, Director ([email protected]), DBA Lawyers The mid-2017 superannuation reforms have had a profound impact on market linked pensions (‘MLPs’). While most of the planning should have already been implemented, there is still some opportunity to review and potentially restructure clients with MLPs. We briefly examine below the treatment of an MLP depending on whether [read more]

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Limited recourse borrowing arrangements can use one bare trustee for multiple bare trusts

By Daniel Butler, Director, DBA Lawyers Introduction A common question we get asked when a client’s self managed superannuation fund (‘SMSF’) is undertaking a limited recourse borrowing arrangements (‘LRBA’) is whether there needs to be a separate bare trustee (usually a company) for each bare trust. The short answer is no. However, it is helpful [read more]

Unlocking potential and avoiding pitfalls in SMSF property development

Unlocking potential and avoiding pitfalls in SMSF property development

Some may think that property development in an SMSF contravenes superannuation law. However, that is overstating the position. There is no blanket ban on property development in SMSFs. Rather, like many investments an SMSF can make, the key to compliance is on how the investment occurs. Extreme caution should be exercised before and during, since [read more]