The Government’s Coronavirus Economic Response

Government announces increased tax benefits in response to the Coronavirus

The Government has announced its economic response to the Coronavirus in the form of a $17.6 billion economic stimulus package. The package has been marketed as a measure to protect the economy by maintaining confidence, supporting investment and keeping people in their jobs.

It is expected that an appropriate package of Bills (which will provide further detail in relation to the proposed measures) will be introduced into Parliament in the final sitting week in March 2020 (i.e., presumably from 23 March 2020) for urgent consideration and passage.

The Key Tax Measures include:

  • From Thursday 12 March 2020, the instant asset write-off threshold has been increased from

$30,000 (for businesses with an aggregated turnover of less than $50 million) to $150,000 (for businesses with an aggregated turnover of less than $500 million) until 30 June 2020.

  • A time-limited 15-month investment incentive (through to 30 June 2021) which will operate to accelerate certain depreciation

This measure will also be available to businesses with a turnover of less than $500 million, which will be able to immediately deduct 50% of the cost of an eligible asset on installation, with existing depreciation rules applying to the balance of the asset’s cost.

As announced, this measure is proposed to only apply to new depreciating assets first used, or installed ready for use, by 30 June 2021.

  • Tax-free payments of up to $25,000 for eligible small and medium businesses (i.e., with a turnover of less than $50 million that employ staff) based on their PAYG withholding obligations.
  • Tax-free payments of $750 to social security, veteran and other income support recipients and eligible concession card holders. It is estimated that around half of those who will benefit will be pensioners. These payments will commence to be automatically made from 31 March 2020.
  • Administrative relief from the ATO for some tax obligations for people affected by the Coronavirus outbreak, on a case-by-case basis. Additionally, the ATO is setting up a temporary shop front in Cairns within the next few weeks with dedicated staff specialising in assisting small business and is currently considering further temporary ‘shop fronts’ and face-to-face options.

In addition to these key tax measures, the Government has also announced additional economic stimulus measures including:

  • Wage subsidies to support the retention of apprentices and trainees – Employers with less than 20 full-time employees may be entitled to apply for Government funded wage subsidies amounting to 50% of an apprentice’s or trainee’s wage for up to nine months from 1 January 2020 to 30 September 2020. The maximum subsidy for each apprentice/trainee is $21,000.

Importantly, where an employer is not able to retain an apprentice, the subsidy will be available to a new employer that employs that apprentice.

It is proposed that employers will be able to register for the subsidy from early-April 2020.

  • Assistance to severely affected regions – The Government has also committed to set aside

$1 billion to support regions and communities that have been disproportionately affected by the economic impacts of the Coronavirus, including those heavily reliant on industries such as tourism, agriculture and education. This will include:

  • The waiver of fees and charges for tourism businesses that operate in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and the waiver of entry fees for Commonwealth National Parks.
  • The provision of additional assistance to help businesses identify alternative export markets or supply chains.
  • Further targeted measures to further promote domestic tourism.

© National Tax & Accountants’ Association Ltd: March 2020

GUESTS Notes

Tax-free payments of up to $25,000 for eligible small and medium businesses (i.e., with a turnover of less than $50 million that employ staff) based on their PAYG withholding obligations.

Businesses with turnover of less than $50 million and which employ staff will be eligible for the assistance which will automatically be issued via a credit to the taxpayer’s activity statement account from 28 April 2020.

Businesses that remit PAYG withholding for employees will receive a maximum payment of 50% of the withheld amount for the March 2020 quarter and June 2020 quarter (but capped at $25,000).  Businesses with employees but that do not remit PAYG withholding will still be eligible to receive assistance of $2,000.

Quarterly lodgers will be eligible to receive the payment for the quarters ending March 2020 and June 2020.

Monthly lodgers will be eligible to receive the payment for the March 2020, April 2020, May 2020 and June 2020 lodgements.

To provide a similar treatment to quarterly lodgers, the payment for monthly lodgers will be calculated at three times the rate (150 per cent) in the March 2020 activity statement. The minimum payment will be applied to the business’ first lodgement.

As the Coronavirus continues to cause widespread disruption, it’s important for organisations to take precautionary measures and formulate action plans to mitigate risks on impacts to business operations.

We are here to assist you and your business and will continue to keep you up date with any information released by the Government.

Avi Paluch – Partner – ap@guests.com.au
Andrew Goldberger – Partner – bg@guests.com.au
Ha Nguyen – Partner – hn@guests.com.au
Mory Kalkopf – Partner – mk@guests.com.au
Moshe Trebish – Partner – mt@guests.com.au

 

Additional downloads:

PREPARING FOR COVID-19
TIPS FOR SMALL BUSINESS TO PREPARE FOR COVID-19

 

Client Alert – March 2020

Super guarantee loopholes closed

The concept of a superannuation guarantee – the legal requirement for your employer to contribute 9.5% of your salary into a nominated super account – should be familiar to everyone, as it makes up the bulk of most people’s future retirement income. You may also salary-sacrifice amounts of your salary to put extra into your super.

Until recently, loopholes in the law meant that your employer could count your salary-sacrificed amounts towards their super guarantee contribution amounts – essentially working against your intention to boost your super. Employers could also calculate their super guarantee obligations based on your post-sacrifice earnings rather than on your full pre-sacrifice earnings.

Depending on your employment agreement, these loopholes meant that if you salary-sacrificed an amount equal to or more than your employer’s super guarantee amount, your employer could choose to not contribute any amount and the legal requirements of the super guarantee would still be met.

TIP: It’s important to note that this wasn’t the original intention of the law, and not all employers would choose to exploit these loopholes. However, where they did, employees who salary-sacrificed could be short-changed and end up with lower super contributions as well as a lower salary overall.

The good news is that the law has now been changed. From 1 January 2020, amounts that you salary-sacrifice to super can’t be used to reduce your employer’s super guarantee obligations, and employers must calculate their super guarantee obligations based on all of your ordinary time earnings (OTE), including any amounts you sacrifice into superannuation that would have otherwise been OTE.

ATO tackling international tax evasion

Australian tax residents are taxed in Australia on their worldwide income. While most do the right thing and declare all their income, some people and businesses try to avoid paying tax by exploiting secrecy provisions and information-sharing gaps between countries.

A recent coordinated effort by the Joint Chiefs of Global Tax Enforcement (J5) has yielded evidence of tax evasion by Australians. The J5 consists of the tax and revenue agencies of Australia, the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada and the Netherlands and was initially formed in 2018 to fight global tax evasion. The countries share intelligence on international tax crime as well as money laundering.

According to the ATO, several hundred Australians are suspected of participating in arrangements with an international financial institution in Central America whose products and services are believed to be facilitating worldwide money laundering and tax evasion. Multiple investigations are currently under way, and anyone with information about the scheme or other similar arrangements is encouraged to contact the ATO.

The ATO has a network of international tax treaties and information exchange agreements with over 100 jurisdictions. In recent years over 2,500 exchanges of information have occurred, enabling the ATO to identify unpaid tax amounts totalling $1 billion.

TIP: The message from the ATO is that anyone with offshore income or assets is better off declaring their interests voluntarily. Those who do so may be eligible for reductions in related administrative penalties and interest charges.

New measures to combat illegal phoenixing

New laws are now in place to target illegal phoenixing of companies in Australia.

Phoenix activity is when a new company is created – “rising from the ashes” of another company that was in debt and has been deliberately liquidated – to continue the business of the old company while avoiding having to pay its debts. Recent estimates are that illegal phoenix activity directly costs Australian businesses, employees and governments between $2.85 billion and $5.13 billion each year.

To combat this type of debt and tax evasion, the new laws target a range of behaviours, including preventing property transfers to defeat creditors, improving the accountability requirements for resigning company directors, allowing the ATO to collect estimates of anticipated GST liabilities and authorising the ATO to retain tax refunds where lodgements are outstanding.

Insurance payouts: are they taxable?

In recent months, parts of Australia have been battered by a combination of fire and floods. As people try to piece their lives together in the aftermath, insurance payouts can go a long way in helping rebuild homes and replace lost items.

However, if you receive an insurance payout in relation to your business, home business or rental property you need to be aware there may be associated tax consequences. For example, if you keep a home office or run a business from home, or make money from renting out your home on a short-stay website, you may be subject to capital gains tax (CGT) when receiving an insurance payout on the home.

Businesses that receive an insurance payment may be subject to varying tax consequences depending on what the payment is designed to replace.

Tip: If you’ve recently received an insurance payment or you’re expecting one, contact us to find out more about how your tax obligations could be affected.

Australia’s independent tax complaints investigator

Do you know who to turn to when you have a complaint about the ATO? Whether you’re an individual or business, the Inspector-General of Taxation and Taxation Ombudsman (IGTO) should be your first port of call.

As the Taxation Ombudsman, the IGTO provides all taxpayers with an independent complaints investigation service. As the Inspector-General of Taxation, it also conducts reviews and provides independent advice and recommendations to government, ATO and other departments.

The IGTO can investigate and assist with issues including extensions of time to pay; the ATO’s debt recovery actions; delays with processing tax returns; delays in ATO communication and responses; information the ATO has considered regarding taxpayers’ matters; understanding the ATO’s actions and decisions; and identifying available options and other relevant agencies that can help.

Complaints can be made online and via phone or post, and services are offered in languages other than English as well as for people who are hearing, sight or speech impaired.

ATO scrutiny on car parking fringe benefits

The ATO has started contacting certain employers that provide car parking fringe benefits to their employees to ensure that all fringe benefits tax (FBT) obligations are being met. Generally, car parking fringe benefits arise where the car is parked on the business premises of the entity, used by the employee to travel between home and their primary place of employment and is parked for more than four hours between 7 am and 7 pm, and where a commercial parking station located within 1 km of the premises charges more than the car parking threshold amount.

Employers have a choice of three methods to calculate the taxable value of the benefits: the commercial parking station method, the average cost method and the market value method. The method currently under ATO scrutiny is the market value method, which states that the taxable value of a car parking benefit is the amount that the recipient could reasonably be expected to have to pay if the provider and the recipient were dealing with each other under arm’s length conditions.

Foreign residents and the main residence exemption

Laws limiting foreign residents’ ability to claim the CGT main residence exemption are now in place. This means that if you’re a foreign resident for tax purposes at the time you sign a contract to sell a property that was your main residence, you may be liable for tens of thousands of dollars in CGT. Some limited exemptions apply for “life events”, as well as property purchased before 9 May 2017 and disposed of before 30 June 2020.

According to the ATO, a person’s residency status in earlier income years will not be relevant and there will be no partial CGT main residence exemption. Therefore, not only are current foreign residents affected, but current Australian residents who are thinking of spending extended periods overseas for work or other purposes may also need to factor in this change to any plans related to selling a main residence while overseas.

CHANGES TO XERO PRICING PLANS

For all our clients who currently hold a Xero subscription,  we would like to inform you that from the 18th of March 2020 Xero are increasing their subscription fees by $2 per month.

If you currently hold your Xero subscription with Guests you will notice the $2 increase in your first monthly invoice issued after the 18th March.

SOME USEFUL LINKS

Here are some information links to help understand these changes:

Xero pricing and plans update

https://www.xero.com/blog/2018/11/xero-pricing-and-plan-update/

Changes to Starter, Standard and Premium plan pricing in Australia

https://www.xero.com/au/pricing/update/

If you have any questions about this increase, please do not hesitate to reach out to us via phone on 9509 7033 or by email nb@guests.com.au

Client Alert – February 2020

ATO backs down from controversial time limit ruling

In 2018, the ATO issued a controversial draft ruling which took a very strict stance on the four-year time limit for claiming input tax credits and fuel tax credits. The ruling had been used by the ATO to deny input tax credits and fuel tax credits where the Commissioner of Taxation made a decision outside the four-year period on an objection or amendment request, even where the objection or request was made within the period. However, a recent observation by a judge ruling on a related matter has put the ATO’s strict stance in doubt and as a result the ruling (Draft Miscellaneous Taxation Ruling MT 2018/D1) has been withdrawn.

Where the Commissioner makes a decision on an objection or requests for amendment in relation to input tax credits and/or fuel tax credits outside the four-year period but the initial objection or amendment request was lodged within the time limit, the taxpayer will no longer be automatically denied the credits in situations where the decision is in the taxpayer’s favour.

As a result, any taxpayer that the draft ruling has affected is encouraged to contact the ATO.

ATO extends bushfire assistance: lodgments deferred

On 20 January 2020 the ATO announced an extension of the tax assistance package for people impacted by the 2019–2020 bushfires in New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania.

Commissioner of Taxation Mr Chris Jordan said the 3.5 million businesses, individuals and self-managed super funds (SMSFs) in the impacted local government areas will have until 28 May 2020 to lodge and pay BAS and income tax returns. This additional time is on top of the two-month extension previously granted.

Additionally, the ATO said it will fast-track any refunds that are due to taxpayers in the impacted regions. For example, businesses expecting a refund as a result of GST credits due to large purchases to replace stock are encouraged to lodge their activity statements at the first opportunity. The ATO will also remit any interest and penalties applied to tax debts since the commencement of the bushfires.

Expansion of Tax Avoidance Taskforce activity

The ATO has recently expanded its Tax Avoidance Taskforce activity to include top 500 private groups, high wealth private groups, and medium and emerging private groups.

The Tax Avoidance Taskforce was originally conceived in 2016 to ensure that multinational enterprises, large public and private business pay the right amount of tax. The Taskforce’s main role is to investigate what the ATO considers aggressive tax avoidance arrangements, including profit shifting.

As a part of the expansion, the ATO now has three “programs” for private groups under the Taskforce’s umbrella: top 500 private groups, high wealth private groups, and medium and emerging private groups. The expansion that will perhaps affect the most taxpayers will be the program covering medium and emerging private groups. This program includes private groups linked to Australian resident individuals who, together with their associates, control wealth between $5 million and $50 million, and businesses with an annual turnover of more than $10 million that are not public or foreign owned and are not linked to a high wealth private group. The ATO estimates this will cover around 97% of the total private group population.

No-cost strategies to increase your super

With all the pandemonium of the new year, your super is probably the last thing on your mind. However, this is precisely the right time to think about implementing some strategies to increase your super for the coming year.

Currently, 5.8 million people in Australia have two or more super accounts. Every year the ATO runs a postcode “lost super” campaign to help raise community awareness. As a consequence of the 2018 campaign, more than 66,000 people consolidated over 105,000 accounts worth over $860 million. For the latest campaign, the ATO has created tables of lost and unclaimed super per state and postcode that anyone can access.

Finding and consolidating your lost super with your active account means you’ll pay fewer management fees and other costs, saving you in the long term.

Another easy way to grow your super is to make sure the super fund that you’re putting your money into is performing well. Recently, the regulator of super funds, the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA), released “heatmaps” that provide like-for-like comparisons of MySuper products across three key areas: investment performance, fees and costs, and sustainability of member outcomes. While the ultimate purpose of the heatmap is to have trustees with areas of underperformance take action to address it, they can also be an invaluable resource in choosing the right super fund.

TIP: A complete list of the impacted areas is available at www.ato.gov.au/individuals/dealing-with-disasters. If you have been affected by the bushfires in a postcode not currently in the list, you can use the ATO Emergency Support Infoline to ask for tailored help: phone 1800 806 218.

Better protection for consumers: new ASIC powers

In response to the recommendations of the Banking and Financial Services Royal Commission and the ASIC Enforcement Review Taskforce Report, the government has proposed new enforcement and supervision powers for ASIC to restore consumer confidence in the financial system, particularly in relation to financial advice. These new powers include enhanced licensing, banning, warrant and phone tap powers, all designed to ensure that avoidable financial disasters uncovered during the Royal Commission are not repeated again.

While the Banking and Financial Services Royal Commission seems long ago in the minds of many, the people who have been financially affected by dubious practitioners will no doubt carry the scar of mistrust for life. This is precisely why the government has introduced new laws which will give ASIC new enforcement and supervision powers in relation to the financial services sector: to weed out the “bad apples” and restore consumer confidence.

SMSF sole purpose test and fractional investments

To be eligible for superannuation fund tax concessions, self-managed super funds (SMSFs) must be maintained for the sole purpose of providing retirement benefits to members. This is known as the sole purpose test. Failing the test could expose trustees to civil and criminal penalties in addition to the SMSF losing concessional tax treatment.

Previously, it was thought that any benefit provided directly or indirectly to members or related parties of an SMSF from an investment would contravene the sole purpose test. However, a recent Full Federal Court decision will provide some flexibility to trustees on certain investments. The Court decided that an SMSF investment in a fund to acquire a fraction interest in a property to be leased at market rent to the member’s daughter did not breach the sole purpose test.

While the Full Court found the SMSF had not breached the sole purpose test, it ultimately ruled against the trustee, finding that the investment was an in-house asset and breached the 5% limit. Crucially, the ATO warned it may still apply compliance resources to scrutinise whether an SMSF investment in fractional property investments contravenes other legal requirements.

$10,000 cash payment limit: the facts

The proposed $10,000 economy-wide cash payment limit has understandably elicited some confusion. While the proposal is not yet law, once enacted it will be a criminal offence for certain entities to make or accept cash payments of $10,000 or more. This is intended to combat the use of cash in black economy activities.

Chief among the questions is to what extent personal transactions will be included in the limit. The government has now released information outlining the circumstances in which the limit would not apply in relation to personal or private transactions.

Among other categories, payments relating to personal or private transactions (excluding transactions involving real property) would not be subject to the limit. Cash gifts to family members (as long as they are not donations to regulated entities such as charities) and inheritances are likely to be exempt. In other words, it is unlikely you will be prosecuted if you give your family members a lavish cash wedding gift or help your kids with a house deposit that happens to be over $10,000. However, if you occasionally sell private assets (e.g. a used car) you may need to be careful and take reasonable steps to ascertain whether the other party is acting in the course of an enterprise.

Client Alert – December 2019

ATO debts may affect your credit rating

Businesses with tax debts need to be aware that the ATO will now be able to disclose the details of their tax debts to credit ratings agencies, which could potentially affect the ability of the business to obtain finance or refinance existing debt.

Generally, only businesses with an ABN and debts over $100,000 and that are not “effectively engaged” with the ATO will be affected. The ATO is planning a phased implementation which will consist of undertaking education efforts before it targets companies, followed by partnerships, trusts and sole traders.

The aim of the laws, according to the government, is to encourage more informed decision-making within the business community by making large overdue tax debts more visible, and to reduce the unfair advantage obtained by businesses that do not pay their tax on time.

Tip: Are you unsure if you have a tax debt, or perhaps you need help with working out a payment plan with the ATO for your existing debt? We can help you with all of this and more.

Crowdfunding: is it income?

Crowdfunding has fast become a go-to strategy for people in need of large amounts of money quickly, but is the money raised considered to be income and therefore taxable?

Crowdfunding is when an individual or business (the promoter) uploads a description of a campaign (e.g. to fund an activity, a project or a new invention) along with the amount they want to raise to a platform like Kickstarter, GoFundMe, Indiegogo or Pozible.

Other people online (the contributors) can then choose to support the campaign or cause by pledging money.

Many campaigns are donation-based. This is where contributors pledge an amount of money without receiving anything in return. If you’re a contributor in this case, you won’t be able to deduct an amount contributed in a crowdfunding campaign as a “donation” in your Australian tax return unless the cause you’ve donated to is an endorsed or legislated deductible gift recipient (DGR).

Other campaigns can be rewards-based. In these cases, the promoter provides a reward, such as goods, services or rights, to contributors in return for their payments. For example, differing levels of campaign-related merchandise may be available. Usually, your acquisition of goods or services for making a contribution means the payment is considered private in nature and not deductible.

As the promoter of a campaign (either donation-based or rewards-based), whether the money you receive is considered to be taxable depends on the circumstances. Generally, if the campaign is related to running/furthering your business or is a profit-making plan, then any money received would be classed as income.

Tip: If you’re thinking of starting a crowdfunding campaign or have already had success with one, we can help you deal with all the tax consequences, so you can concentrate on making your business or project a success.

Non-commercial losses: do the rules apply to you?

If you have a business in addition to your main employment, the non-commercial loss rules could apply to you, which may prevent you from deducting your business losses against your other income.

Depending on your business activity, as long as you satisfy certain conditions your business will not be subject to the non-commercial loss rules. If your business doesn’t satisfy these conditions, don’t worry – you can also apply to the ATO for an exemption under certain circumstances.

A “non-commercial” business activity in this context is any business where the deductions exceed the assessable income in any particular year.

If you’re a primary producer or a professional artist and your income from other sources unrelated to the business is less than $40,000, the non-commercial loss rules will not apply to you. You will be able to deduct any losses from the business against your other income, but you should be aware of the $40,000 threshold, which may change from year to year based on your personal circumstances.

Tip: If you get the bulk of your income from being an employee and run a business on the side, we can help you figure out if you’re subject to the non-commercial loss rules. We can also help make a formal request to the ATO to allow you an exemption from the rules.

Less tax for some working holiday makers?

The working holiday tax rate (commonly known as the “backpacker tax”) has generally applied from 1 January 2017 to individuals who have working holiday or work and holiday visas. In essence, the first $37,000 of “working holiday taxable income” is taxed at 15%, and then the balance is taxed at the standard rates applicable to residents.

Thus, working holiday makers are taxed at a higher rate on their first $37,000 than residents, because the holiday makers don’t get the benefit of the Australian tax-free threshold ($18,200 for 2019–2020).

A recent Federal Court case centred on a British citizen who lived in Australia for almost two years. During most of that time she lived in the same share house accommodation in Sydney, and only left for short stints to travel to other areas. Essentially, the case came down to whether or not she was a resident of Australia and if so, whether the non-discrimination clause in the Australia–United Kingdom double taxation agreement prevented her from being taxed at the higher “backpacker” rate. The Federal Court found that she was an Australian resident for tax purposes, and she should not be taxed at the higher rate.

Some have seen this decision as a win for all working holiday makers, but it’s likely to have a fairly narrow application. Coupled with the ATO still considering an appeal, this area of law is far from settled.

Tip: If you’re unsure whether this decision affects you, we can help you work out whether you’re a tax resident and may be eligible to pay less tax on your working holiday income.

Tax relief for drought-stricken farmers

With drought sweeping across the country, farmers are being offered access to concessional loans, grants and special allowances to help ease the immediate financial burden. While it is difficult to predict when the drought will break, for those who are in the process of navigating their way out of immediate financial strain, there are ways to future proof your farm or primary production business by taking advantage of various tax concessions.

Some of the immediate assistance measures include concessional loans and the farm household allowance, through which lump sum payments of up to $12,000 can be paid to eligible farm households.

The allowance can also be in the form of fortnightly payments for a maximum period of four cumulative years at the same rate as the Newstart allowance. This allowance may be available to both the farmer and their partner, provided certain conditions are met. An activity supplement of up to $4,000 to pay for study, training or professional financial advice may also be available to eligible households.

In addition to the immediate assistance, primary producers can obtain ongoing benefits of various tax concessions, including the instant asset write-off, immediate deductions for fodder storage assets, and income averaging to assist with cash flow.

Tip: If you’re experiencing hardship due to drought, we can contact the ATO on your behalf or assist with your application for farm household allowance to ease the immediate financial burden.

Super guarantee opt-out for high income earners

Under the superannuation guarantee framework, employers are required to contribute a minimum percentage (currently 9.5%) of their employees’ ordinary time earnings into superannuation. Employers that fail to do so will be liable for a penalty called the superannuation guarantee charge, payable to the ATO. If you’re a high-income earner with multiple employers, this requirement has the very real chance of pushing you over the concessional contributions cap of $25,000.

To avoid this unintended consequence, laws have recently been passed so that eligible high-income earners with multiple employers can opt out of the super guarantee regime. From 1 January 2020, employees with more than one employer who expect their combined employers’ contributions to exceed the concessional contributions cap can apply for an “employer shortfall exemption certificate” with the ATO.

Tip: It’s a good idea to speak to your employers before deciding to apply for an exemption certificate, as it may impact relevant awards or your workplace agreements.

Client Alert – November 2019

Getting the benefit of your business tax losses

When you’re starting a new business venture, it may take some time before the business becomes profitable. And there may be other situations where an established business operates at a loss in a particular year. So, what does this mean tax-wise? When your deductions in an income year are greater than your assessable income, you have a “tax loss”. You generally can’t receive a refund for a tax loss, but you can use it in other ways.

If you’re a sole trader or individual partner, you may be able to use your business tax loss to offset other assessable income you earn personally. This includes salary and wages from employment and income from personal investments.

But watch out: if the loss is “non-commercial”, you can’t use it immediately to offset your other income. Instead, you must defer it.

Downsizer super contributions: getting it right

“Downsizer” contributions let you contribute some of the proceeds from the sale of your home into superannuation – but there are several important eligibility requirements.

Are you thinking about selling the family home in order to raise funds for retirement? Under the “downsizer” contribution scheme, individuals aged 65 years and over who sell their home may contribute sale proceeds of up to $300,000 per member as a “downsizer” superannuation contribution (which means up to $600,000 for a couple).

These contributions don’t count towards your non-concessional contributions cap and can be made even if your total superannuation balance exceeds
$1.6 million. You’re also exempt from the “work test” that usually applies to voluntary contributions by members aged 65 and over.

Health insurance and your tax: uncovered

If you don’t hold private hospital cover – or are thinking about dropping it – make sure you understand the financial consequences. You could be hit with an extra tax surcharge of up to 1.5% or cost yourself extra premiums in future.

Levies, surcharges and loadings – the terminology around health insurance and tax can be bewildering! But if you don’t hold private hospital cover, you need to understand how this may affect your tax.

The Medicare levy surcharge (MLS) is a tax penalty you must pay if you earn above a certain amount and don’t take out a sufficient level of private hospital cover for you and all of your dependants. It’s designed to give you a financial incentive to insure privately. The MLS is applied by the ATO at tax time and included in your assessment.

Small business CGT concessions: when do I qualify?

CGT concessions allow you to reduce – or in some cases, completely eliminate – the capital gain from the sale of a business asset, whether it’s held directly by your business entity or in another related structure.

What’s more, the concessions also allow you to make extra super contributions – sometimes up to $1,515,000 – in connection with the sale of business assets. This is an attractive opportunity for many small business owners heading for retirement, especially given the restrictive annual contributions caps that usually apply.

There are various concessions available, each with their own eligibility rules. There are two basic conditions you must meet before you can access any of the concessions. The first requirement tests whether your business is “small” enough to qualify. There are two alternative tests: a turnover test and a net assets test. The second major requirement is that the capital gain must arise from the sale (or other CGT event) of an “active” asset.

Unpaid super: important amnesty update for employers

The launch of Single Touch Payroll (STP) will dramatically improve the ATO’s ability to monitor employers’ compliance with compulsory super laws moving forward. This electronic reporting standard is now mandatory for all Australian businesses and gives the ATO fast access to income and superannuation information for all employees.

The government is getting tough on unpaid compulsory super guarantee (SG) contributions, but fortunately for businesses it has recently announced a revised “grace period” to rectify past non-compliance. All businesses should review their super compliance to consider what action they may need to take.

The timing of your disclosure is important. The proposed new amnesty will cover both previous disclosures made since 24 May 2018 (under the old amnesty scheme that the government failed to officially implement) and, importantly, disclosures made up until six months after the proposed legislation passes parliament.

Selling shares: how does tax apply?

Whether you own just a few listed shares or have an extensive portfolio, understanding how capital gains tax (CGT) applies when you sell your shares can help you plan your trades effectively. If you trade shares on a scale that amounts to a business of share trading, talk to your tax adviser about the different tax regime that applies.

Each time you sell a parcel of shares, you trigger a “CGT event” and you must work out whether you’ve made a capital gain on that parcel (where the proceeds you receive exceed the cost base) or capital loss (where the cost base exceeds the proceeds). You also trigger a CGT event if you give the shares away as a gift – perhaps to a family member. For tax purposes, you’re deemed to have disposed of the shares at their full market value.

All of your capital gains for the income year are tallied and reduced by any capital losses. This includes your gains and losses from all of your assets that year, not just shares. If you have an overall “net capital gain”, this is included in your assessable income and taxed at your marginal tax rate. If you have a “net capital
loss”, you can’t offset this against ordinary income like salary or rental income. Instead, a net capital loss can be carried forward to future years to apply against future capital gains.

ATO to scrutinise every return for tax time 2019

The ATO has announced that it will scrutinise every tax return lodged during Tax Time 2019 as part of its ongoing focus on “closing tax gaps”.

Assistant Commissioner, Karen Foat, said taxpayers who have done the wrong thing may be subject to an audit, even if the over-claim of deductions is minor. Third party data indicating under reported income, and deductions that appear high compared to people with a similar job and income level, tend to raise concerns, Ms Foat said.

If you’re subject to an audit, it’s not always doom and gloom. In some cases, you may get a higher deduction if the ATO discovers that you haven’t claimed something you’re entitled to. For example, you may be entitled to a deduction for depreciation on a laptop or other technology used for work but had incorrectly calculated the claim or omitted it altogether.

In the event of an audit and you’re found to have over-claimed, the ATO may apply penalties depending on your behaviour. If you’re found to have over-claimed based on a genuine mistake, for example, if you’ve claimed the costs which are private and domestic in nature that are sometimes used for work or study (e.g. sports backpack or headphones), the ATO may choose not to apply penalties.

Beware of insurance changes in superannuation

Since July this year, super funds have been required to cancel insurance on accounts that have not received any contributions for at least 16 months unless the member elects to continue the cover. In addition, inactive super accounts with balances of under $6,000 will either be automatically consolidated by the ATO with other accounts you may hold or transferred to the ATO. If your super is transferred to the ATO, any insurance will also be cancelled.

This applies to life insurance, total and permanent disability (TPD) insurance and income protection (IP) insurance that you may have with your super fund.

Another change coming to super funds in the not too distant future of 1 April 2020 is opt-in insurance for members under 25 years old and those with account balances of less than $6,000. From that date, members under 25 who start to hold a new choice or MySuper product will need to explicitly opt-in to insurance. Currently, the onus is on the member to opt out of insurance if they do not want it.

Client Alert – September 2019

Warning to watch out for myGov and ATO tax scams

The government’s Stay Smart Online website warns there has been a surge in scammers impersonating myGov and the ATO to trick people into giving them money or personal details. These scams can take the form of emails, text messages and fake myGov login pages.

In June 2019, the ATO received 6,444 reports of tax-time scams impersonating the ATO. Emails with links to fake myGov login pages were the most widespread email scam.

The myGov system will never send texts, emails or attachments with links or web addresses that ask for your login or personal details. Never click on links in emails or text messages claiming to be from myGov.

Always log into your official myGov account to lodge your return and check if you owe a debt or are due a refund. You can do this by typing https://my.gov.au/ into your internet browser’s address bar.

Unfortunately, ATO and other scams continue well beyond the 30 October deadline for tax returns, as scammers know many people are waiting for a refund or information about debts. It’s important to watch out for scams throughout the year.

Tip: More information is available online at www.staysmartonline.gov.au/. If you’re unsure about a tax-related message or phone call, you can phone the ATO’s Scam Hotline on 1800 008 540.

Tax time updates

ATO has refunded $10 billion so far

The ATO says that $10 billion has been refunded to Australian taxpayers so far this tax time, an increase of over $2 billion from the same time last year, with most returns processed in under two weeks. The ATO aims
to process returns as soon as possible, and has announced that over four million refunds have already been sent out, compared to over three million refunds issued this time last year.

TIP: If you haven’t lodged your tax return yet, or you’re waiting on information about a refund or tax debt, we can help – contact us to find out more.

ATO watching for undisclosed foreign income

The ATO has reminded Australians who receive any foreign income from investments, family members or working overseas to make sure they have reported it this tax time.

New international data-sharing agreements allow the ATO to track money across borders and identify people who aren’t meeting their obligations. Under the new Common Reporting Standard (CRS), the ATO has shared data on financial account information with over 65 tax jurisdictions across the globe. This includes information on account holders, balances, interest and dividend payments, proceeds from the sale of assets, and other income.

Tip: If you’re an Australian resident for tax purposes, you are taxed on your worldwide income, so you must declare all of your foreign income no matter how small the amount.

Unusual claims disallowed

The ATO has published information about some of the most unusual claims it has disallowed. Around 700,000 Australians have claimed almost $2 billion of “other” expenses, including non-allowable items such as child care and even Lego sets.

Assistant Commissioner Karen Foat says a systematic review of claims found and disallowed some very unusual expenses. “A couple of taxpayers claimed dental expenses, believing a nice smile was essential to finding a job, and was therefore deductible. It isn’t!”

Tip: The “other” deductions section of your tax return is for expenses incurred in earning income that don’t appear elsewhere on the return – such as income protection and sickness insurance premiums.

ATO contacting small employers about Single Touch Payroll

From 1 July 2018, employers with more than 20 employees have been required to provide real-time reports to the ATO of salary and wage payments, super guarantee contributions, ordinary time earnings of employees and PAYG withholding amounts.

From 1 July 2019, this Single Touch Payroll (STP) reporting system has extended to all employers.

The ATO is now writing to small employers who haven’t yet started reporting or applied for a deferral, to remind them of their STP obligations.

Tip: Small employers have until 30 September 2019 to start reporting or apply for extra time to get ready.

There will be no penalties for mistakes, or missed or late reports, for the first year, and employers experiencing hardship or who are in areas with intermittent or no internet connection will be able to access exemptions.

Disclosing business tax debt information: ATO consultation

In its Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook in 2016–2017, the government announced it would change the law to let the ATO report business tax debt information to credit reporting bureaus (CRBs) where a business consistently avoids engaging with the ATO to manage a tax debt.

Tip: The ATO can’t currently pass on this sort of information because Australian law contains strict confidentiality requirements for ATO-held taxpayer information.

The ATO has said it “recognises the important role businesses play in the Australian economy [but] when an entity avoids paying its tax debts it can have a significant impact on other businesses, employees, contractors and the wider community.” It has released a consultation paper to facilitate consultation between the ATO, businesses and CRBs.

If passed in its current form, the amended law would allow taxation officers to disclose information about business tax debts when certain conditions are met. A business would need to have debts of at least $100,000 overdue by more than 90 days, and have not effectively engaged with the ATO to manage that debt.

Cross-border recovery of tax debts

The ATO has also reissued Practice Statement Law Administration PS LA 2011/13 Cross border recovery of taxation debts. This statement outlines options available for the ATO to recover a tax debt where the debtor is outside Australia, and sets out how the ATO deals with requests from other countries for assistance in recovering tax debts owing to the other country.

ATO superannuation focus areas

Lost super

As at July 2019, the ATO held 5.39 million super accounts worth $3.98 billion. It will aim to reunite $473 million with 485,000 fund members using the new Protecting Your Super measures.

Tip: You can find out about your lost or unclaimed super through ATO Online via myGov.

Pension cap indexation

The pension transfer balance cap (TBC) of $1.6 million could increase on 1 July 2020 or 1 July 2021, depending on movement in the consumer price index (CPI). The general TBC is indexed in increments of $100,000 when the indexation rate reaches prescribed figures (calculated using a formula set out in Australian tax law). Once indexation happens, there will no longer be a single TBC that applies to all super members with a retirement phase income stream. Instead, there could be a personal TBC for each member, depending on their individual situation and arrangements.

Compassionate release of super only available in limited cases

The ATO has recently seen a significant increase in queries about compassionate release of super (CRS). In most cases, the people concerned were ineligible because they were looking to use their super to pay for general expenses.

CRS is an option only for very specific unpaid expenses such as medical treatment and transport costs, palliative care costs, loan payments to prevent the loss of your home, the costs of home or vehicle modifications related to a severe disability and expenses associated a dependant’s death.

Tip: Any amounts released early on compassionate grounds are paid and taxed as normal super lump sums.

Personal services income rules: unrelated clients test

The Federal Court has set aside an Administrative Appeal Tribunal decision that income a business analyst derived through a company was subject to the personal services income (PSI) rules.

According to the Court, simply because an individual or personal services entity is able to provide services through an intermediary, such as a recruitment or similar agency, this does not constitute the making of an offer or invitation for the purposes of the relevant legislation. More than that is required for the purposes of the unrelated clients test.

Scams targeting ASIC customers

Scammers pretending to be from ASIC have been contacting Business Name owners asking them to pay fees and give personal information to renew their business or company name.
These emails often have a link that provides an invoice with fake payment details or infects your computer with malware if you click the link.

Warning signs the email is not from ASIC

An email is probably a scam and is not from ASIC if it asks you:
•    to make a payment over the phone
•    to make a payment to receive a refund
•    for your credit card or bank details directly by email or phone
•    pay fees that are different to the fees on our website
ASIC notifications will come from the email address ASIC.Transaction.No-reply@asic.gov.au.

What should I do if I am unsure?

If you are unsure at all please contact Nicole or Rie at Guests Accounting who will be able to confirm if the email is a scam.

Nicole Bedoya/Rie Tsandilis
info@guests.com.au
03 9509 7033

Client Alert – August 2019

ATO will inform certain tax agent clients their information is “Tax ready”

If tax agent clients’ employers report through Single Touch Payroll (STP) and the clients are linked to ATO online services through myGov, the ATO will send them a myGov Inbox message to let them know that their end of year payment summary (income statement) has been marked by their employer as “Tax ready” and can be used in their tax return and they can access their income statement in ATO online services through myGov, or the tax agent can give them the information.

If tax agent clients do not already have myGov accounts, agents should let them know they do not need one for the agent to lodge their tax return. Tax agents can access their employment data and lodge for them once their information is “Tax ready”.

Top mistakes to avoid this tax time: ATO

The ATO has revealed some of the most common mistakes people make at tax time. Top mistakes include lodging before all prefill data is available or failing to report all income and claiming the wrong thing – work-related expenses is one area where people commonly make mistakes. To help taxpayers work out what they can claim, the ATO has developed 30 occupation guides for specific occupations; forgetting to keep receipts; and claiming for something never paid for.

Pension deeming rates cut from 1 July 2019

The Government has announced that it will lower the social security deeming rate from 1.75% to 1.0% for
financial investments up to $51,800 for single pensioners and $86,200 for pensioner couples. The upper deeming rate of 3.25% will be cut to 3.0% for balances over these amounts.

The Minister for Families and Social Services, Senator Anne Ruston, said the changes would benefit about 630,000 age pensioners and almost 350,000 people receiving other payments. Under the new rates, age pensioners whose income is assessed using deeming will receive up to $40.50 a fortnight for couples, $1053 extra a year, and $31 a fortnight for singles, $804 a year.

The reduced deeming rates have been backdated to 1 July 2019. Any additional pension payment will flow through into pensioners’ bank accounts from the end of September 2019 in line with the regular indexation of the pension.

Personal tax cuts Bill passed without amendment, now law

The Treasury Laws Amendment (Tax Relief So Working Australians Keep More Of Their Money) Bill 2019 fully implements the personal tax cuts measures announced in this year’s 2019-20 Federal Budget. Starting immediately, low and middle income earners with an income up to $126,000 will receive up to $1,080 in low and middle income tax offset (LMITO), or $2,160 for dual income couples, with the increased tax relief to apply from the 2018-19 income year.

As a result of the amendments, the Treasurer said around 94% of Australian taxpayers are projected to face a marginal tax rate of 30% or less in 2024-25.

ATO statement on administration of the low and middle income tax offset (LMITO)

The ATO announced on 5 July 2019 that it is implementing the necessary system changes so taxpayers that have already lodged their 2018-19 tax returns will receive any increase to the low- and middle-income tax offset (LMITO) they are entitled to. Any tax refund will be deposited in the taxpayers nominated bank account.

The amount of the offset taxpayers may be entitled to, and the amount of any refund, will differ for everyone depending on individual circumstances such as income level and how much tax was paid throughout the year.

STP reporting irregularities: ATO contacting businesses

The ATO has advised tax agents that it is currently emailing Single Touch Payroll (STP) enabled employers who have either ceased reporting for over 45 days; or have submitted employees under multiple payroll or BMS IDs. Some of these businesses may be tax agent clients. These reporting irregularities may cause their employees to see incorrect, incomplete or multiple entries in their income statements.

Employees guide for work expenses: ATO

The ATO has released an employees guide for work expenses to help employees decide whether their expenses are deductible, and what records they need to keep to substantiate them. The Guide says that not all expenses associated with employment are deductible and also debunks some myths about work expense deductions.

FBT, taxi travel and ride sourcing – ATO clarifies

For businesses, taxi travel by an employee is an exempt benefit if the travel is a single trip beginning or ending at the employee’s place of work. The ATO says taxi travel can also be an exempt benefit if it is a result of sickness or injury.

For Not-For-Profits, depending on the type of NFP organisation, certain benefits they provide to employees may receive concessional treatment from FBT. However, some benefits may be exempt from FBT altogether.

New ATO data-matching program – overseas movement data and HELP debt

The ATO said it will acquire overseas movement data from the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) for
individuals with an existing HELP, VSL or TSL debt. The data matching program will be conducted for the 2019-20, 2020-21 and 2021-22 financial years.

Those living and working overseas with a Higher Education Loan Program (HELP), Vocational Education and Training Student Loan (VSL) and/or Trade Support Loans (TSL) are required to update their contact details and submit an overseas travel notification if they have an intention to, or already reside overseas, for 183 days or more in any 12 months; and lodge their worldwide income or a non-lodgment advice.

GST on low value goods – “very successful initiative”, says ATO

The ATO says it has now collected over $250 million in additional GST since the GST on low value goods measure began on 1 July 2018, outstripping forecasts by $180 million.

As businesses do not need to register unless they meet the A$75,000 GST turnover requirements, most small independent operators do not need to register and have not been affected by this measure.

Super downsizer contributions reach $1 billion: Minister

The Assistant Treasurer, Michael Sukkar, has announced that older Australians downsizing from their family homes have contributed $1 billion to their superannuation funds. The downsizer measure, which commenced on 1 July 2018, allows older Australians choosing to sell their home and downsize or move from homes that no longer meet their needs, to contribute the proceeds from the sale of their home into superannuation up to $300,000.

Reasonable travel and overtime meal allowance amounts for 2019-20

Taxation Determination TD 2019/11, issued on 3 July 2019, sets out the amounts the Commissioner treats as reasonable for the 2019-20 income year in relation to employee claims for overtime meal expenses; domestic travel expenses; and overseas travel expenses.

For employee truck drivers who receive a travel allowance and are required to sleep (take their major rest break) away from home, TD 2019/11 provides separate meal expense amounts for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Client Alert – July 2019

Tax planning

With the end of the 2019 income tax year upon us, this issue draws attention to year-end tax planning strategies and compliance matters that you need to consider to ensure good tax health. It focuses on the most important issues for small to medium businesses and individuals to consider.

Tip: This is general information, but we’ll take your particular circumstances into account to help you achieve good tax health. Contact us to find out more.

Deferring derivation of income

If your business recognises income on an accruals basis (when an invoice is raised) and your cash flow allows, you may consider delaying raising some invoices where work is incomplete until after 30 June, meaning the assessable income will be derived after the 2019 income tax year.
For business income derived on a cash basis (interest, royalties, rent and dividends), you may consider deferring the receipt of certain payments until after 30 June 2019. For example, setting term deposits to mature after 30 June 2019 rather than before.

Bringing forward tax-deductible expenses

To qualify for deductions in the 2019 income tax year, you may be able to bring forward upcoming expenses so that you incur them before 30 June 2019. Small businesses and individual non-business taxpayers may prepay some expenses (such as insurances and professional subscriptions) up to 12 months ahead. This should only be done subject to available cash flow and where the prepayment makes commercial sense.

Tax relief for individuals and small businesses

Instant asset write-off

The instant asset write-off threshold for small businesses has been increased to $30,000 and extended to 30 June 2020. And from 2 April 2019, the instant asset write-off has also been expanded to include businesses with a turnover from $10 million to less than $50 million.
If you purchase an asset (new or second-hand) costing less than $30,000 and it is used or installed ready for use from 7:30pm on 2 April 2019, you can claim a deduction for the portion your eligible small business uses. Different thresholds and deduction amounts apply for assets purchased before that date.
You can purchase and claim a deduction for multiple business assets as long as each asset is under the relevant threshold. Assets costing $30,000 or more can’t be immediately deducted. You can continue to deduct them over time using the small business pool.

Low and middle income tax offset

A new low and middle income tax offset (LMITO) will be available for individuals, providing a benefit of up to $255 if you earn under $37,000 and up to $1,080 for if you earn between $48,000 and $90,000. The offset reduces by 3 cents for every dollar in excess of $90,000. There is no offset for individuals who earn more than $126,000.

Individuals

Deduct work-related expenses

People overclaiming deductions for work-related expenses like vehicles, travel, internet and mobile phones and self-education are on the ATO’s hitlist again this year. There are three main rules when it comes to work-related claims:

  • You can only claim a deduction for money you have actually spent (and that your employer hasn’t reimbursed).
  • The expense must be directly related to earning your work income.
  • You must have a record to prove the expense.

Deductions are not allowed for private expenses (eg travel from home to work that’s not required to transport bulky equipment) or reimbursed expenses (eg for the cost of meals, accommodation and travel). And although you don’t need to include records like receipts with your tax return, the ATO can deny your claim – and penalties may apply – if you can’t produce the evidence when asked.

Tip: The ATO now uses real-time data to compare deductions across similar occupations and income brackets, so it can quickly identify higher-than-expected or unusual claims.

Don’t forget sharing economy income

Money that you earn from “gig” jobs through platforms like Uber, Airtasker and Airbnb, such as transporting passengers or renting out a room or house, counts as your assessable income. This means you must declare it on your tax return.
Depending on your gig activities and expenses, you may also be able to claim deductions related to this type of income, but it’s important to keep evidence to support your claims.

Superannuation contributions and changes

Both employees and self-employed individuals can claim a tax deduction annually (maximum $25,000) for personal superannuation contributions, provided the super fund has physically received the contribution by 30 June 2019 and the individual provides their fund with a “notice of intention to claim” document.

Important to note!

New rules mean that insurance coverage will be cancelled on “inactive” superannuation accounts from 1 July 2019, unless the fund member informs the fund in writing that they want to keep the insurance. Also, where an inactive account has a low balance (under $6,000) the fund will have to send that super to the ATO for consolidation and safekeeping.
If you haven’t made contributions or rolled over your super in the past 16 months, no matter what your balance, it’s important to check in with your fund now to keep your account active and maintain the insurance you want.

Tip: The new law also bans super funds from charging exit fees when you want to leave the fund, which should make it easier to change and consolidate your super accounts when you need to.

Businesses

Lower company tax rate

From 1 July 2016, the income tax rate applicable to qualifying companies has reduced to 27.5%. For the year ending 30 June 2019, this lower tax rate now applies for companies with aggregated turnover of up to $50 million, as long as they satisfy the “passive income test”.

Small business restructure rollover relief

Small businesses (<$10 million turnover threshold) have access to the small business restructure relief, which allows eligible taxpayers to transfer assets between related entities, including companies, trusts and individuals, without any income tax or CGT consequences. While this rollover can be very beneficial to a small business, and can lead to substantial tax savings, the eligibility rules can be complex, so care is needed.

Super guarantee contributions

The rate for super contributions paid by employers on behalf of their employees under the super guarantee for the year ended 30 June 2019 is 9.5%.
If you’re an employer, you must make super guarantee contributions for your employees quarterly, within 28 days after the end of each quarter (September, December, March and June).

Tip: Although the June 2019 quarter super guarantee contribution doesn’t have to be paid until 28 July 2018, it’s worth considering an early payment – you can only claim deductions on this year’s return for contributions that employees’ super funds receive by 30 June 2019.

Single touch payroll

From 1 July 2018, employers with 20 or more employees will have to run their payroll and pay their employees through accounting and payroll software that is Single touch payroll (STP) ready. This is a major reporting change, as employers will report payments such as salaries and wages and allowances, PAYG withholding and super information to the ATO directly from their payroll solution at the same time employees are paid.
From 1 July 2019, this system will extend to all employers.

TIP: STP reporting also means changes for employees, who will see year-to-date tax and super information in myGov. Employers no longer have to give employees payment summaries (group certificates) for information reported through STP, because this information will appear on an employee’s employment income statement in myGov at the end of the financial year.

Beware of ATO impersonation scams at tax time

The ATO warns taxpayers to be alert to malicious scammers who are using increasingly sophisticated methods and technology to impersonate the ATO. A new tactic on the rise is “spoofing”, where scammers mimic a legitimate ATO phone number caller ID to call or send SMS messages, or mimic a legitimate email domain to send emails.
SMSs and emails may ask you to click on a link and provide your personal details to get a “refund” from the ATO. Scammers may also say you need to pay a (fake) tax debt. The ATO warns that these scammers may intend to steal not only your money, but also your identity by using your personal information.

TIP: If you’re not sure whether a communication is really from the ATO, don’t respond, don’t click any links and don’t open any attachments. Call the ATO’s scam hotline on 1800 008 540 to check its legitimacy.

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Accounting & Taxation Services

We believe accounting services should be straight forward and stress-free. By providing cutting edge bookkeeping, accounting, taxation and financial solutions and using the right products for your record keeping, our team at Guests Accounting will work with you to understand your needs and help you achieve your goals, making it easier for you to manage your cash flow and meet your tax obligations.

While fiscal compliance is of the upmost importance, we at Guests Accounting also believe in offering management advice and support at all levels of our services. We are committed to offering the highest level of friendly and professional service and welcome the opportunity to work with you.

The areas we specialise in are as follows:

  • Accounting & Tax Consultancy Services
  • Personal & Business Tax Returns
  • Annual Reporting
  • Business and Tax Advisory
  • ATO correspondence Management
  • Self-Managed Super
  • Cloud accounting experts

Ask Us a Question

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Business Accounting

Concentrate on running your business and let Guests Accounting take care of all your business accounting and taxation requirements.

Some of the services we can offer your business include:

  • Accounting and bookkeeping
  • Accounting software advice and assistance
  • Business & company tax returns
  • Taxation – GST & PAYG advice, BAS preparation
  • Guests Accounting can liaise with the ATO on your behalf
  • WorkCover: your obligations
  • Audit advice & audit insurance
  • Superannuation for you and your staff
  • Business ‘start up’ advice
  • Prepare Business plans and financial budgets and review regularly
  • Measure your performance against industry benchmarks
  • Trust & company structures
  • Business Insurance

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Personal Accounting

We offer a range of Personal Accounting services for individual employees. Our most popular Personal Accounting service is assisting with completing tax returns for individuals.

Tax returns can be complex and there are allowable tax deductions and expense claims that can be made that you may not be aware of. We can help you minimise your payable tax and potentially increase your tax return and make sure your tax return is lodged on time.

We also offer advice on:

  • Investment properties, tax and negative gearing
  • Tax & share investments
  • HELP (higher education loans) debts
  • Superannuation advice
  • Advice on setting up a self-managed super fund (SMSF)
  • Late tax returns

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Bookkeeping & Financial Record Management

One of the most important steps in the preparation of financial information is the data entry. It is the vital part of your accounting process, ensuring that your financial information is up to date and accurate.

Our highly experienced team of bookkeepers will get the job done efficiently by using cloud based products and software shortcuts, leaving you more time to concentrate on your business.

Guests Accounting can take over all, or some of your bookkeeping activities allowing you to concentrate on growing your business. We can:

  • Design, establish and review accounting systems and software
  • Perform checks, reconciliations and end of financial year reports
  • Manage your accounts receivable and accounts payable
  • Ensure your business is up to speed with legislative requirements and management reports
  • Undertake payroll duties and compliance
  • Prepare and lodge BAS statements
  • GST & PAYE advice
  • BAS Lodgement
  • GST Reconciliation
  • PAYG Withholding & Superannuation reports
  • Completing expense reports
  • Direct to bank account transactions
  • Organising your documents and records
  • Data / ledger entry
  • Paying bills
  • Completing expense reports
  • Direct to bank account transactions
  • Provide general business administrative support

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Business Advisory

Helping our clients grow, strengthen and develop their businesses is our main aim.  Whether small, medium or large receiving expert help in areas such as strategy development, management accounting, cost analysis and budgeting is very important to attaining a business’s short and long objectives.

Our aim is to enable you and your business to maximise potential and profitability.  We do this by providing the highest level of technical and commercial solutions to resolve issues that might impair the attainment of these outcomes.

We also have particular expertise in advising our private clients with family succession strategies that allows for the effective transfer of wealth to future generations.

Our expertise and time will help you attain your goals.

We specialise in the following:

  • Corporate Structure
  • Strategy development and facilitation
  • Strategic board and management reporting
  • Budget preparation and review
  • Updating your business plan
  • Business value maximisation
  • Systems review
  • Sustainability
  • Financial diagnostic analysis
  • Cash flow and profitability
  • Business succession planning and implementation
  • Business valuations for acquisition or sale
  • Estate planning
  • Asset protection structuring

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Business Start-Ups & Structures

Choosing your business structure is an important decision and we can advise you on the best structure for your requirements. There are four main business structures commonly used by small businesses in Australia and we can help with them all:

Sole trader: an individual operating as the sole person legally responsible for all aspects of the business.
Partnership: an association of people or entities running a business together, but not as a company. A partnership is relatively inexpensive to set up and operate.
Company: a legal entity separate from its shareholders.
Trust: an entity that holds property or income for the benefit of others. Trusts require a formal trust deed that outlines how the trust operates, require the trustee to undertake formal yearly administrative tasks and if you operate your business as a trust, the trustee is legally responsible for its operations. A trustee of a trust can be a company, providing some asset protection.

It is important to note that you can change your business structure throughout the life of your business.

We can help with the following:

  • Corporate Structures
  • Updating your business plan
  • Business value maximisation
  • Systems review
  • Sustainability
  • Strategic planning
  • Financial diagnostic analysis
  • Cash flow and profitability
  • Corporate compliance
    • Formation of trusts and new company registrations
    • Provision of registered office services for service of notices
    • Attending to ASIC returns and regular filings on your behalf
    • Business name registrations and maintenance
    • Preparing minutes and drafting resolutions

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Cloud Accounting solutions featuring MYOB, Reckon and XERO

Cloud Accounting

Cloud accounting is essentially your accounting software stored and accessed from an online server which allows upgrading of software, tax tables for payroll, also data backups are managed remotely and automatically by the software provider.  This is a great time saver for any small to medium business owner.

Our solutions will help your business take advantage of an eco-system where your accounting software is the centre of all your information. From manufacturing, inventory, to customer relationship management (CRM), rostering/timesheets to payroll, you will be in control of every aspect of your business represented by a thorough reporting system.

Please do not hesitate to contact us for an obligation free consultation session on business software solutions. Our well-trained staff will provide you with the best solution that suits your needs and budget. With customised solutions, discounted software subscription, hands-on and personal training, we are committed to deliver you a quality of service that will meet and exceed your expectations.

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Woman auditing the books with a magnifying glass

Auditing

There are many reasons why a business or association may need to be audited. These include audits regulated by ASIC, government departments and licensing authorities.

You may wish for your business to be audited to ensure your financials are all correct, up to date and compliant with Australian accounting standards.

We offer ongoing support for annual audits and can discuss audit insurance for your business.

Self-managed super funds (SMSFs) are required to be audited annually.

Our business auditing services include:

  • Statutory Audits
  • Specialist Reviews
  • Business Risk Reviews
  • Self Managed Superannuation Fund Audits
  • Due Diligence reviews

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Australian dollars in back pocket

Payroll Management

Whether you’re just starting out, experiencing rapid growth or sustaining a mature company we have the solutions for your payroll needs.  We know that accrual and recording of annual and sick leave is a headache most employers can do without.

At Guests we offer a cost saving service that will keep your company compliant with all relevant legislation and will processes your payroll on time and accurately.

We will save you time, reduce costs and offer flexible options.

We can assist with the preparation of:

  • Pay slips
  • Payment of salaries and other benefits
  • Accrual of all types of leave and recording of leave taken
  • Calculation and payment of superannuation

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Australian dollars in back pocket

Migration Assistance Services

We have been working closely with a number of leading migration lawyers and agents to assist our clients to obtain Business Migration Visas (Visa subclass 188, Subclass 132, Subclass 888), Employer sponsored skill migration visas (the old 457 visa or the new TSS visa program).

– Prepare financial reports and Business Plan in a compliant format for migration purposes.
– Prepare statements of financial position of the Applicant and Sponsoring Employer.
– Undertaking due diligence on business and asset purchases.
– Buy/Sell Agreement and Negotiations
– Provide insights on compliance with the Points System necessary for the Government visa requirements.
– Provide tax and business advisory services in order for holders of the subclass 188 visa to meet the requirements of Permanent visa subclass 888.

Primary contact: Ms. Ha Nguyen. Email: hn@guests.com.au

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Accounting services for Accommodation, Restaurants and Hospitality Venues

Accounting for Accommodation, Restaurants and Hospitality Venues

This is an industry with high levels of competition, hard won competitive advantage, and global influences that are constantly changing. Guests Accounting’s experience in this industry is extensive and we have the expertise and provide the range of services that are delivering the results our clients want.

While our accounting skills are very important in delivering the financial analysis and interpretation needed for better strategy development and implementation it is how we use these skills and experience in the following areas that make our efforts even more productive.

  • Acquisition or sale of a business, Amalgamation advice
  • Management advice in the operation of properties
  • Business and governance support
  • Specialist advisory and taxation services, including:
  • Business planning
  • Cashflow projections
  • Working capital management

The accommodation and hospitality industry is subject to many rules and regulations and it is part of our role to ensure our clients are kept abreast of changes and the financial impact that can accompany such change.

Our experience in this industry means you can be confident we’ll provide the financial guidance you need while you focus on what you do best, provide customer satisfaction.

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Accounting services for barristers and solicitors

Accounting for Barristers and Solicitors

Work as a barrister or solicitor can be incredibly time consuming. Potentially long hours and long work weeks, keeping up to date with constantly changing legal paradigms and working through client cases can leave little time for yourself.

Give Yourself a Break

With so much on your plate, the last thing you may want to worry about are your taxes and accounting requirements. By using an accountant to assist in handling your taxes and other relative finances, you could reduce your taxation workload and potentially claim more of your expenses, plus you could have more time to focus on your career and your personal life.

Years of Industry Knowledge, Aimed at Helping Clients

Guests Accounting have been providing accountancy and taxation services to clients throughout Melbourne for many years. We focus on developing strong client relationships, identifying each client’s individual scenario along with their goals, and helping them achieve their accountancy requirements.

Professional Services for Business Start-ups and Established Businesses

We offer a broad range of business services for individuals and small to large firms. Whether you’re managing an established business or starting up one of your own, we can assist you with your accounting and tax needs, from the preparation of certain financial documents, claiming expenses, your tax returns and much more.

If you have any questions, please contact us to discuss your options. Staff at Guests Accounting are more than happy to answer any queries you may have.

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Accounting services for construction and property developers

Accounting for Construction and Property Developers

The process of running a construction business can be profitable though extremely time-consuming at points. Client deadlines, management of construction supplies, Occupational Health and Safety on site, along with overseeing staff and subcontractors is a lot to deal with it as it is.

Effective management of your cash flow and other financial requirements such as taxation can make the difference between your building business flourishing or struggling. Using a professional accountant that understands the financial issues of running a business can provide a benefit to you and your business, such as giving you more time to focus on your business and personal life, rather than worrying heavily about taxation.

With years of industry experience, Guests Accounting has provided accounting services to building businesses in the suburbs of Melbourne, delivering comprehensive tax services and knowledge in the industry.

Comprehensive Services

We provide a wide range of accounting services and advice to businesses and individuals, including:

  • Payroll and bookkeeping services and options
  • Advice relating to claiming motor vehicle expenses
  • Preparing income tax returns and certain financial documents
  • Advice on record keeping software, spreadsheets and tools for recording income and expenses of your business
  • Equipment finance (tools, construction supplies, etc)
  • Advice in relation to the sale and purchase of a business
  • Tax planning strategies
  • Advice for business start-ups
  • Plus much more support.

Whatever direction you’re looking to take your business or contracting, we’re here to help with your taxation and accounting needs. It’s a common situation where builders, trades people and businesses are using software that is beyond their requirements, potentially leading to confusion along with a waste of time and money. We can provide advice with record keeping in regards to your expenses and income, based on your accounting skill level and what is appropriate for your business and goals.

If you’re interested in finding out how we can help you and your business with your taxes, give us a call today or email your enquiry. Staff are happy to answer any questions you may have in relation to our services and appointments.

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Accounting services for doctors and medical professionals

Accounting for Health and Allied Services, Doctors and Medical Professionals

Working in the medical industry can be incredibly fulfilling though also extremely time consuming. Potentially long and extended hours, keeping up to date with patient or client details, travelling and on call jobs can leave you exhausted.

With all this on your plate, worrying about parts of your taxes shouldn’t be an issue. A professional accountant can assist you with your taxes and accountancy, giving you more time to focus on your career and personal life. Not only can accountants reduce your taxation work load but they can also assist with evaluating your expenses to reduce the amount of tax payable or enhance your tax return depending on your situation.

Guests Accounting have helped a range of doctors and medical professionals with their accounting and taxation needs for years in Melbourne. With a devoted team of accounting experts, we focus on providing great service and support for all our clients, whether an individual, small practice, organisation or large business.

Not only do we provide accounting services to doctors but also a large range of medical professionals and careers, such as the following:

  • Patient transport service (PTS) drivers and ambulance care assistants
  • Art therapists
  • Audiology staff and businesses
  • Biomedical scientists
  • Chiropractors
  • Counsellors
  • Chiropodists/podiatrists
  • Dentists, dental hygienists, nurses, technicians and therapists
  • Dieticians
  • General practitioners (GPs)
  • Housekeepers
  • Learning disabilities nursing
  • Massage therapists
  • Mental health nurses
  • Music therapists
  • Myotherapists
  • Neurophysiology and neurosurgery
  • Osteopaths
  • Pharmacists and pharmacy technicians
  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychologists
  • Psychotherapists
  • Practice secretaries and typists
  • Speech and language therapists
  • Sterile services management
  • Plus many more medical areas.

Staff at Guests Accounting are happy to answer any questions you may have about our services or the taxation and accounting process. If you would like to book an appointment or have a query, please contact us today.

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Accounting services for investors

Accounting for Manufacturing Companies

Working closely with our clients and providing professional specialised accounting and management expertise is why many quality manufacturing firms have employed our services for generations.  The benefits of working with a firm that knows what it’s like to be at the ‘coal face’ can’t be overstated.

It’s this approach, passion, professionalism, skill-set and dedication to our task that has given many large Australian businesses the confidence to employ our services.

Manufacturing is the one of the more complex forms of business and made all the more difficult because competition, competiveness and global trends are constantly changing.  Managing this change is what makes or breaks companies but we know our extensive experience across industries and accounting issues has helped many manage their way through problems and others build on their success.

Whatever the situation Guests Accounting has the expertise and experience to help you get the job done.

The services we offer to help you deliver the outcomes your company and stakeholders want are as follows:

  • General accounting input
  • Information technology
  • Audit services
  • Regular management reporting
  • Detailed financial analysis and reporting for profit and loss, balance sheet, and funds statements
  • Cost of production analysis
  • Accurate cost accounting
  • Lead time management
  • Capital requirement
  • Tendering
  • Analysis of actual vs standard cost
  • Identify inefficiencies
  • Manage wastage
  • Source supplies
  • Optimise plant capacities.

Providing financial reporting is one thing but it is how this data is interpreted and used to implement strategy is at the core of Guests Accounting’s value to your firm.

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Accounting services for marketing and digital marketing agencies

Accounting for Marketing and Digital Marketing Agencies

Advertising agencies, marketing consultancies, designers and digital innovators collectively represent one of the fastest growing business segments. They create brands, build websites and deliver marketing campaigns.

At Guests Accounting we believe that accounting is an important and necessary piece of every digital agency’s strategic framework. Accounting is more than balancing books and making sure you’re ready for next year’s taxes. It’s planning for future growth and success.

The specialised services Guests Accounting offer include:

  • Ongoing internal accounting for the Marketing/Advertising Agency itself
  • Assisting to build processes for reconciling your employee’s billable hours to preparing and sending invoices to your client’s on a consistent and continual basis (hourly billing)
  • Calculating project costing and profitability (fixed fee and hourly billing)
  • Employee compensation consulting in an organisational environment wherein your employees consist of a variety of skill sets (engineers, creatives, core operations and business development)
  • Forecasting profits based on management and ownership goals
  • Monitor revenue and collection patterns (Cash Flow)
  • Identifying your key metrics and benchmarking with your competitors
  • Assist with ownership and transition strategies
  • Work to establish financial reporting best practices
  • CFO business advisory and evaluation services
  • Business valuations
  • Succession and ownership transfer planning
  • Risk management (insurance strategies)
  • Budgeting, forecasting, and performance review
  • Customised monthly, quarterly, or annual financial reports
  • Growth strategies (from Mergers and Acquisitions to Organic growth)

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Accounting services for business enterprises and private businesses

Accounting for Private and Business Enterprises

Many of Australia’s best and most successful businesses are privately owned but such ownership comes with its own unique needs and challenges.  Guests Accounting have many years experience working in this area and understand well the unique challenges facing owners of family businesses.

While family businesses face the normal ups and downs of business life there is always the added complexity of family relationships that can make business decisions more difficult.  At Guests Accounting we are able to manage all businesses aspects of such ventures due to our long experience working with family businesses that means we look to address other issues that might impact more heavily than they should.  Issues such as:

  • Lack of quality succession planning and inadequate training of junior family members.
  • External investments draining cash from operations and diverting focus on core operations.
  • Poor governance and management systems.
  • Lack of capital investment and financial support.
  • Has the business adequately distinguished business and family governance?
  • Is there a degree of independent guidance?
  • Is the management team adequately equipped?
  • Generational transition planning, business coaching and mentoring.
  • Operational and strategic management structuring: family versus independent management.
  • Objective external advice on family issues and conflict resolution processes.
  • Assistance with the development and implementation of a family charter, family forums, family councils and advisory boards.
  • Responsive financial, accounting and business advisory support.
  • Family business succession planning.

We pride ourselves on the strength of the relationships we build with our clients and the depth of knowledge and understanding we develop over time.  Nowhere is this more important than with our family business clients.

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Accounting services for primary producers and farmers

Accounting for Primary Producers and Farmers

Managing a farm is a time consuming task. Overseeing staff and ensuring your day to day operations are running smoothly can take up enough time as it is; the last thing you may want to deal with is financial paper work and tax.

A professional accountant can help you efficiently manage your accounting, bookkeeping and taxation requirements, while also providing you with advice and strategies to help effectively grow your business. This can give you more time to focus on what’s important to you, such as handling tasks on your farm and enjoying life outside of work.

For over 60 years we have been providing accounting services for primary producers and farmers throughout Victoria. We understand what farmers require to effectively manage the finances of their farming operations and endeavour to provide all of our farming clients with effective advice and services to do such.

Take the Stress out of Tax with Help from a Professional Accountant

Time is money—two things that accountants can save for you. A professional accountant has the expertise and industry experience to help you efficiently, effectively and quickly manage your accounts, all while helping you save money and reduce tax.

Here at Guests Accounting, we can help you with:

  • Identifying opportunities to legally reduce tax payable
  • Preparation of income tax returns
  • Equipment finance
  • Assistance with employment compliance, such as WorkCover and superannuation
  • Cash flow projections
  • Tax planning strategies
  • Liaising with farm consultants
  • Advice on record keeping software, spreadsheets and tools for recording income and expenses of your business
  • Advice in relation to the sale and purchase of equipment or properties
  • Advice in relation to business expansion and growth
  • Assistance with drought and flood claims
  • Assistance with government incentive programs
  • Advice for business start ups
  • Succession planning.

Looking for help with your accounting and taxation requirements?

Whether a small or medium sized business farm, our team at Guests Accounting have the expertise to help you with all of your tax, accounting, GST and business advice needs.

Contact us today for comprehensive services at affordable prices, and advice you can trust.

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Accounting services for retail businesses and managers

Accounting for Retail Businesses and Managers

Managing a retail business can be a time consuming and complex task. You have to make sure that your staff can perform well, are receiving appropriate payment in regards to their wage and superannuation, plus then there’s the range of OH&S and compliance issues that must be followed.

Guests Accounting understands the financial implications that retailers have to deal with. We offer you professional experience, technical knowledge and support with your taxes and accounting.

Professional Accounting Services

Our services for retailers include:

  • Start-up business financial advice
  • Payroll and bookkeeping services
  • Income tax returns
  • Tax planning strategies
  • Accounting software advice and selection
  • Tools and spreadsheets to assist in detailing and reporting income and expenses
  • Advice about the sale and purchase of your business
  • Advice about claiming motor vehicle and transport costs
  • The preparation and analysis of certain financial documents and statements.

Ongoing Support

Over time, you may want to change the direction your business is heading and this could lead to financial issues. Financial advice and services from professionals could help you and your business keep on track with your goals and evolve positively. Guests Accounting can provide professional accounting advice and services as your business progresses and changes.

If you setting up a new retail business or looking to take your current business to the next level, please contact us today.

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Accounting services for tech companies

Accounting for Tech Companies

The technology industry faces very rapid change.  The extent and variety of this change in the last twenty years alone has been hugely diverse and at a pace that sees companies come and go in very short periods of time.

This risk and instability has also been accompanied by amazing opportunities and finding the best way forward is always complex and difficult.  However, even amongst so much disruption the basic principles of good business are still the guiding light.

Guests Accounting’s expertise, industry knowledge, stability and experience is helping our clients navigate the best way through these opportunities and threats.  Clients include information technology, big data, telecommunications, computer networking, software development and hardware development businesses.

Added into the mix is an ever increasing regulatory framework that has to be understood and managed.  Our experience in this area is extensive and allows our technology clients to stay ahead.

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Accounting services for trades and service industries

Accounting for Trades and Service Industries

When operating in your trade or business, you want to be able to focus on your client’s needs and help them, rather than becoming bogged down with tax, accounting and finances of your own. The friendly team at Guests Accounting provide professional accounting services for trades people.

Apart from your typical builder, plumber, carpenter and electrician we also service clients in a range of other trades including:

  • Air Conditioning Mechanics
  • Arborists
  • Bathroom Renovators
  • Blinds – Repair & Installation
  • Bricklayers
  • Builders
  • Carpenters
  • Carpet Cleaners
  • Carpet Repairers
  • Ceiling Repairers
  • Commercial Cleaners
  • Concreters
  • Domestic Cleaners
  • Electricians
  • Electrical Appliance Repairs
  • Fencing & Gates
  • Floating Floors
  • Floor Sanding
  • Furniture Assembly
  • Fencing Contractors
  • Guttering
  • Garden Maintenance
  • Gas Fitters
  • Glazers
  • Handymen
  • Home Security
  • Insulation
  • Interior Decorators
  • Joinery
  • Kitchen Renovators
  • Landscape Gardeners
  • Lawn Care
  • Painters
  • Paving Contractors
  • Pergolas
  • Plasterers
  • Plumbers
  • Rendering
  • Retaining Walls
  • Reticulation
  • Roller Doors
  • Roof Tilers
  • Roofing Repairers
  • Rubbish Removalists
  • Security Doors, Gates & Grills
  • Swimming Pools & Spas
  • Telecommunications
  • Tiling
  • Timber Floors
  • Tree Loppers
  • Vinyl & Carpet Layers
  • Window Cleaners
  • Wrought Iron Gates & Balustrades
  • Welders

Tailored Support

Guests Accounting are here to help you with your accounting; whether you’re looking to grow a business of your own or just sort out your own finances and taxation.

Many self employed tradesmen use accounting and finance software that is beyond their business needs, potentially leading to confusion along with wasting time and money. We can provide advice with what software or methods would be appropriate for your needs, along with what would be easy to use for you, giving you more time to focus on your work.

If you’re looking for a professional accountant who is dedicated to helping your trades business, please contact us today.

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Accounting services for transport and logistics professionals

Accounting for Transport and Logistics Professionals

Managing a transport & logistics business can be a time consuming and complex task. You have to make sure that your staff can perform well, are receiving appropriate payment in regards to their wage and superannuation, plus then there’s the range of OH&S and compliance issues that must be followed.

Guests Accounting understands the financial implications that transport and logistic industries have to deal with. We offer you professional experience, technical knowledge and support with your taxes and accounting.

Professional Accounting Services

Our services for Transport and Logistics Professionals include:

  • Start-up business financial advice
  • Payroll and bookkeeping services
  • Income tax returns
  • Tax planning strategies
  • Accounting software advice and selection
  • Tools and spreadsheets to assist in detailing and reporting income and expenses
  • Advice about the sale and purchase of your business
  • Advice about claiming motor vehicle and transport costs
  • Advice and assistance with claiming Fuel Tax Credits
  • The preparation and analysis of financial documents and statements.

Ongoing Support

Over time, you may want to change the direction your business is heading and this could lead to financial issues. Financial advice and services from professionals could help you and your business keep on track with your goals and evolve positively. Guests Accounting can provide professional accounting advice and services as your business progresses, grows and changes.

If you setting up a new Transport and Logistics business or looking to take your current business to the next level, please contact us today.

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Avi Paluch

Avi Paluch

Partner

ap@guests.com.au

(03) 9509 7033 / 0418 542 606

Avi Paluch became a partner in 1975. His client base comprises of professionals in a diverse range of industries, sole traders, national, multi-national and international groups in relation to taxation and management issues.

His clients also include large family groups and high net worth individuals. In addition, he is involved in a range of audits. Avi currently involves himself in various community boards in the capacity of honorary treasurer.

His other interests are being with his family and attending sports events.

Andrew Goldberger

Andrew Goldberger

Partner

bg@guests.com.au

(03) 9509 7033 / 0419 155 373

Andrew Goldberger joined Guests in 1987. Prior to that he occupied a senior position with the Australia Taxation Office. As well as looking after a diverse range of groups of SMEs and high wealth individuals, Andrew is an expert in taxation. He has been involved in a number of Large Income Tax and State Revenue Audits and provides advice on various technical tax issues and areas of tax planning. Andrew also consults to other practitioners in these areas.

Andrew has also written articles for various taxation publications including CCH and participated in taxation focus groups. He is regularly called on to address various public practitioner groups on taxation matters and has conducted training sessions for CPA Australia.

Ha Nguyen

Ha Nguyen

Partner

hn@guests.com.au

(03) 9509 7033 / 0439 898 487

Ha joined Guests Accounting in 2002 and has earned her position to having been recently appointed a Partner in the firm. Since obtaining a Bachelor of Business (with Distinction) at RMIT, Ha has completed an MBA at Monash University and recently a Masters of Taxation at Melbourne Law School.

Having worked for a number of ASX Listed companies before joining Guests, Ha possesses both robust technical skills in management accounting and turn-around strategies, accounting technologies, together with in depth knowledge in public practice as a tax specialist and business advisor.

Ha’s diversity and quality of clients have accorded her a never-ending opportunity to learn. This has fuelled her ongoing loyalty to the firm to meet and exceed our clients’ expectations. Maintaining a good rapport with clients and well known for her personal and caring approach, she believes embracing new technology will be instrumental in providing deeper insights to their business. She has effectively utilised her knowledge, skills and creativity to the benefit of many of our clients’ business, both large and small enterprises.

As a firm believer in the importance of life time learning, Ha intends to continue her professional engagement with Australian professional bodies and institutions. Whilst regularly speaking and lecturing at Monash University and Latrobe University, she is actively involved with CPA Australia as an author and a group leader for the “Practice Management” Module of the CPA Professional Public Practice program. She is also a member of the Victorian Public Practice Committee CPA Australia, and a board member of KOTO International, a not-for-profit organisation in Australia.

Moshe Trebish

Moshe Trebish

Partner

mt@guests.com.au

(03) 9509 7033 / 0417 081 305

Moshe joined Guests Accounting in 1985 and has more than 40 years of extensive experience. He has an indepth understanding of business and is responsible for a diverse group of clients and is in charge of the Superannuation Team and the Audit of superannuation funds.

Moshe’s knowledge in many different areas including business structuring, accounting, taxation, auditing, SMSFs and business planning in various industries enables him to provide advice on ‘the big picture’, taking into account both present and future needs of clients.

Moshe has been involved in various not-for-profit organisations during his career in an honorary capacity. This has given him a good grounding in the corporate governance area. Moshe continues his interest in the new regulatory environment of the not-for-profit sector.

  • Diploma of Commerce (RMIT)
  • Member of CPA Australia
  • Public Practice Certificate (CPA)
  • Registered Tax Agent
  • Registered SMSF Auditor
  • Registered Company Auditor
  • Limited AFSL Licencee
  • Chartered Tax Advisor (TIA)
Mory Kalkopf

Mory Kalkopf

Partner

mk@guests.com.au

(03) 9509 7033 / 0405 642 458

Mory graduated from Monash University in 1979 and joined our team with more than 20 years experience. He is a member of both the Institute of Chartered Accountants and the CPA and a Fellow of the Association of Taxation and Management Accountants.

After more than 18 years experience with a Chartered firm, Mory travelled to the United Kingdom and gained invaluable experience working with various Accounting and Legal firms in London, developing operating systems and in investigative accounting roles.

Mory joined Guests in March 2002 and became a partner in July 2005, specialising in Taxation and Business Services. Mory has also served on the executive of community boards and not-for-profit organisations.

Gary Bryfman

Gary Bryfman

Partner

gb@guests.com.au

(03) 9509 7033 / 0411 077 998

Gary Bryfman is a FCPA, having a Masters Degree in Taxation. His earlier accounting background was in industry, specialising in costing and budget preparations.

He has been a partner of Guests for 31 years. Gary has been involved in a number of Jewish organisations, including JCCV as honorary treasurer; CSG, JEMP and advisor to MDA executive.

Accounting Videos

Secure File Transfer is a facility that allows the safe and secure exchange of confidential files or documents between you and us.

Email is very convenient in our business world, there is no doubting that. However email messages and attachments can be intercepted by third parties, putting your privacy and identity at risk if used to send confidential files or documents. Secure File Transfer eliminates this risk.

Welcome to Xero – you’ll love using beautiful accounting software that puts your financials at your fingertips. Here you’ll learn about the features you’ll use regularly in Xero, and see how they make managing small business finances easier than ever.

Please enjoy the links to these free tools supplied by MoneySmart - a great resource for general financial information. Please get in touch if you would like to discuss any questions that you may have as a result of using these calculators.

Guests Accounting welcome your enquiry. To book an appointment or simply ask us a question, fill in your details and we'll be in touch soon!

Email, Phone & Fax

Melbourne Office

  • 234 Balaclava Road, Caulfield North VIC 3161
  • 9:00AM to 5:00PM (Mon-Thurs), 8:30AM to 4:30PM (Fri)

Postal Address

  • PO Box 2197, Caulfield Junction VIC 3161, DX 37066 Caulfield

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