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Taxation Bill to encourage innovation and investment in early stage companies released - Mar 2016

On Wednesday 16 March 2016, the Tax Laws Amendment (Tax Incentives for Innovation) Bill 2016 (Bill) was introduced into Parliament. The Bill is part of the Government’s $1.1 billion National Innovation and Science Agenda, containing proposed tax incentives for early stage investors and for venture capital investment.

The Government has consulted widely with investors, industry bodies, universities and the start-up community during the development of the Bill through the Tax Incentives for Early Stage Investors Policy Discussion Paper (see article: Defining criteria for tax incentives for early stage investors). However, notably, there was no public consultation process on exposure draft legislation. The acceleration echoes the intention to implement the measures with effect from 1 July 2016. 

Partner, David Cornwell, Partner, Alan Jessup, and Senior Associate, Kimberley Levi discuss the key aspects of the Bill.

Taxation Issues and Equity Crowdfunding in Australia - Oct 2015

The Government is soon to introduce a regulatory framework to facilitate equity crowdfunding. However, to date, there has been minimal focus on the taxation treatment of equity crowdfunding. It is hoped that the Government will prioritise the tax treatment of equity crowdfunding as part of the “national innovation agenda” however until the Government does so, it is important to be mindful of the Australian Taxation Office’s views on the application of the existing tax laws to equity crowdfunding. Partner, David Cornwell, Associate, Kimberley Levi and Law Clerk, Stephaine Skevington discuss the current taxation implications on equity crowdfunding in Australia.

Fiscal Watch September 2015 - Sep 2015

Welcome to the September 2015 edition of Fiscal Watch, where Partner, Alan Jessup and Associate, Kimberley Levi explore:

  • The capital vs revenue distinction - what was the money really paid for?
  • Foreign resident CGT withholding tax
  • Changes to transfer pricing documentation - countering multinational tax avoidance

Changing foreign investment framework in Australia - Jul 2015

Tony Abbott, Prime Minister of Australia, issued a media release on 11 February 2015 which outlined that the Government was in the process of better scrutinising our foreign investment laws and was considering changes to the foreign investment processes in Australia. Since then a number of events have occurred, some changes have become effective and future changes would seem imminent. It is now more important than ever for foreign investors in Australia to be aware of these changes. Senior Associate, Kara Pennisi takes a look.

Resurrecting Employee Share Schemes - Jan 2015

Partner, Judy Choate discusses the evolution of Employee Share Schemes and considers how the forecast changes to the tax treatment of these Schemes will affect public and private companies. This article has been accepted for publication in the April edition of the respected industry journal, The Tax Specialist. A link to this will be provided in due course.

Tax reform on the horizon for Australian primary producers - Oct 2014

Last week the Government released its ”Agricultural Competitiveness green paper“, which has been produced following receipt of almost 700 submissions from stakeholders in the agricultural sector. Taxation specialist Will Fennell summarises the tax measures proposed in the Government’s green paper.

Primary producers - what are the tax concessions? - Oct 2014

While according to the OECD report "Agricultural Policy Monitoring and Evaluation 2013" Australian farmers are some of the least subsidised in the world, there are nonetheless a range of tax concessions available in Australia to primary producers. Here, Taxation Specialist Will Fennell summarises those concessions.

ESOP Tax changes announced - Oct 2014

On 14 October, the Federal Government announced the changes it foreshadowed to the tax treatment of Employee Share and Option Plans (ESOPs). The changes are significant for any company, whether public or private, which would benefit from issuing equity (or options to acquire equity) to employees or directors at a discount to market value as a means of remuneration, incentivisation, retention or raising capital.

FMD scheme changes enacted this week - Jun 2014

The FMD scheme is an income equalisation scheme available to primary producers. Taxation Specialist Will Fennell looks at changes to the scheme that will affect those in the agribusiness sector.

Changes to FMD scheme ahead - Mar 2014

The “farm management deposits” (or FMD) scheme is a form of income equalisation which allows an individual carrying on a primary production business (including a primary production business carried on as a partner in partnership or as beneficiary of a trust) to carry over income from years of good cash flow and to draw down on that income on years when the cash is needed. Taxation specialist Will Fennell looks at the proposed changes.

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