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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]

LRBAs — current tips and traps

LRBAs — current tips and traps

By Allison Murphy, Lawyer ([email protected]), and William Fettes, Senior Associate ([email protected]), DBA Lawyers The limited recourse borrowing arrangement (‘LRBA’) lending market has undergone a significant shift in recent years, with most first-tier bank lenders withdrawing their LRBA offerings for purchasers of residential property. As a result, several smaller second-tier lenders have emerged to fill the [read more]

Reversionary pensions v. BBDNs: advisers’ risks

Reversionary pensions v. BBDNs: advisers’ risks

By Bryce Figot, Special Counsel ([email protected]), and Daniel Butler, Director ([email protected]), DBA Lawyers Introduction There has been a number of commentators suggesting that if a pension reversion nomination conflicts with a binding death benefit nomination (‘BDBN’), the pension reversion nomination prevails. While we acknowledge the answer is not necessarily black and white; as it depends [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]

LRBA Wind Up Documentation

LRBA Wind Up Documentation

By Kimberley Noah ([email protected]), Lawyer When winding up a limited recourse borrowing arrangement (‘LRBA’), appropriate documentation is required. Broadly, an SMSF trustee has the right to acquire legal ownership of an LRBA asset (ie, from the relevant custodian/bare trustee) after the loan is fully repaid. Refer to s 67A(1)(c) of the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act [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]

The $1.6 million transfer balance cap revisited

The $1.6 million transfer balance cap revisited

By Kimberley Noah ([email protected]), Lawyer, and William Fettes ([email protected]), Senior Associate Introduction The $1.6 million transfer balance cap (‘TBC’) imposes a limit on the total amount that a fund member can transfer into an exempt (retirement phase) pension. The TBC was introduced with effect from 1 July 2017 with the intention of making the tax [read more]

Reversionary pension v BDBN: which one wins?

Reversionary pension v BDBN: which one wins?

By Bryce Figot, Special Counsel, DBA Lawyers and Daniel Butler, Director There is a misconception that reversionary pension documentation will always apply before a binding death benefit nomination. If the SMSF deed is silent on the question, it can be entirely possible at times that the binding death benefit nomination (‘BDBN’) will apply before any [read more]

Is the superannuation guarantee system in need of an urgent overhaul

Is the superannuation guarantee system in need of an urgent overhaul?

By Kimberley Noah, Lawyer and Daniel Butler, Director, DBA Lawyers Employers are required to make the minimum superannuation guarantee (‘SG’) contribution for each employee to avoid a shortfall under the Superannuation Guarantee (Administration) Act 1992 (Cth) (‘SGAA’). This appears to be a simplistic rule. If an employer does not provide the minimum SG contribution, significant [read more]