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VRLT — holiday home exemption extended to discretionary trusts and certain other structures

The holiday home exemption (HH Exemption) from the vacant residential land tax (VRLT) in Victoria has been extended to holiday homes owned by companies, unit trusts, fixed trusts and discretionary trusts (DT) provided certain criteria is met. This extension was in the State Taxation Amendment Act 2024 (Vic) (STA Act) that was finalised as law [read more]

Deed of trust

Family trusts –– managing unpaid present entitlements

Unless carefully managed, unpaid present entitlements (UPEs) and beneficiary accounts in family/discretionary trusts can give rise to significant tax risks. Section 100A anti-avoidance provisions Section 100A of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 (Cth) (ITAA 1936) is an anti-avoidance provision that applies to arrangements where one person receives a benefit from a trust but another [read more]

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Objecting against land tax in Victoria

Overview With recent increases in property values and ongoing changes to the land tax rules, more property owners may wish to object against their land tax assessments. Recent changes in Victoria include a reduction to the general land tax free threshold to $50,000 (prior to January 2024, this threshold was $300,000 resulting in an estimated [read more]

real estate investment concept, buy house, location, energy efficiency rating and property value, Real estate online on virtual screens. home search, land price, property tax, real estate market

Victoria’s vacant residential land tax – holiday home exemption

The vacant residential land tax (VRLT) applies to all vacant residential land throughout Victoria from 1 January 2025. This tax can also apply to holiday homes unless the holiday home exemption (HH Exemption) or another exemption applies. What is VRLT? VRLT was originally introduced in 2017 to assist with housing affordability as overseas purchasers were [read more]

Deed of trust

Why you should order discretionary trusts from DBA Lawyers

While DBA is recognised as Australia’s leading SMSF law firm, it is also well known for its trust law experience and trust documents. We believe that we offer an excellent discretionary trust deed that is easy to read, provides great flexibility and reflects the latest legal developments. As lawyers advising on discretionary trust issues and [read more]

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Recent AFCA decision protects SMSF interests

A recent Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) decision highlights the consequences for financial advisers when they fail to meet their service obligations. Under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) (CA) financial advisers are required to ‘act in the best interests of the client’ and ‘must only provide advice if it would be reasonable to conclude that [read more]

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Victoria’s new annual tax on commercial and industrial property from 1 July 2024

Overview A new commercial and industrial property (C&I Property) tax of 1% p.a. applies in Victoria from 1 July 2024. This new tax will be levied on the land’s unimproved value and is payable in addition to any land tax. Duty on the purchase of C&I Property will be phased out. This article reflects the guidance [read more]

Trader writing increasing graph on coins stacking for investment profit growth and saving concept.

Vacant Residential Land Tax in Victoria soon to be extended

The Appointor of a discretionary trust is a role created under the terms of the trust that usually provides for that person to have the ultimate control of the trust. For example, the Appointor under the DBA Lawyers’ trust deed: • must consent to any variations to the trust deed; • has power to appoint [read more]

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Watch out for extra transfer duty on property investments via a company or unit trust

Overview Structuring property investments via a company or unit trust may give rise to landholder duty for non-related investors as highlighted in Oliver Hume Property Funds (Broad Gully Rd) Diamond Creek Pty Ltd v Commissioner of State Revenue (Review and Regulation) [2023] VCAT 634. This decision resulted in an additional $151,235 of duty plus interest [read more]

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Federal Court confirms AFCA award of $270,000 against a financial adviser for investment loss is a debt due and payable

The Federal Court of Australia held that a self managed superannuation fund (SMSF) could recover the amount of an Australian Financial Complains Authority (AFCA) determination relating to a compensation claim against a financial adviser for an investment loss. This article focuses on SMSF trustees rights to complain and seek compensation via AFCA for inappropriate financial [read more]