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The instant asset write-off threshold has increased to $30,000, and has been extended to 30 June 2020.

The instant asset write-off now also includes businesses with a turnover from $10 million to less than $50 million. These businesses can claim a deduction of up to $30,000 for the business portion of each asset (new or second hand), purchased and first used or installed ready for use from 7.30pm (AEDT) on 2 April 2019 until 30 June 2020.

Businesses with a turnover of up to $10 million can also claim a deduction for each asset purchased and first used or installed ready for use, up to the following thresholds:

- $30,000, from 7.30pm (AEDT) on 2 April 2019 until  30 June 2020
- $25,000, from 29 January 2019 until before 7.30pm (AEDT) on 2 April 2019
- $20,000, before 29 January 2019.

NB: The GST exclusive cost of the asset must be less than the above thresholds in order to claim an instant asset write-off.

Heavy vehicles can be used in different activities both on and off public roads. The amount of fuel tax credits you can claim depends on what fuel you use, when you acquired it and if you use it:

  • for travelling on public roads
  • in all other activities, including off public roads, on work sites and to power auxiliary equipment.

You need to do separate calculations for different fuel tax credit rates.

To work out how much fuel was used in the different activities, you can use any apportionment method considered fair and reasonable for your circumstances.
Common methods and measures include where you:

  • add up all the eligible quantities of each fuel type that attract the same fuel tax credit rate
  • subtract any ineligible fuel, such as fuel you used in light vehicles on a public road, from the total fuel acquired
  • determine a reliable percentage of eligible fuel usage for a sample period and apply this over a number of tax periods.

The ATO's simplified method for working out fuel used in vehicles with auxiliary equipment can be found at:
www.ato.gov.au/business/fuel-schemes/in-detail/heavy-vehicles/?page=5#Methodsofworkingoutfuelconsumption_auxil and includes the following:
 

 Vehicle Percentage  Auxiliary equipment
 Concrete truck  30%  Mixing barrel and mechanisms for loading/unloading concrete
 Commercial coach  5%  Air conditioning
 Refrigerated vehicle  10%  Refrigeration unit
 Waste collection  15%

 Bin lifting equipment

The current fuel tax credit rate for heavy vehicles travelling on a public road is 15.8c/litre and for all other uses – including power auxiliary equipment of a heavy vehicle is 41.6c/litre. With such a large difference in the rates, it is important that you identify any non on road use of heavy vehicles and claim it at the appropriate higher rate.

NSW GOVERNMENT REBATES

A family with two children could save $1,000 by using Energy Switch and claiming the Active Kids voucher, Creative Kids voucher and the CTP Green Slip refund.

A pensioner concession card holder could save $1,200 if eligible for the Low Income Household Energy Rebate, Gas Rebate, CTP Green Slip refund and free rego.

First and second year apprentices registered with the NSW Department of Education and Training can apply for a registration rebate to help with the costs of registering their motor vehicle.

Frequent toll users who spend on average $25 per week or more in tolls or $1,300 over the year are eligible for one free 12 months registration for a car, ute 4WD or motorcycle for registrations due between 1 July 2018 and 30 June 2019.

For more information on Service NSW Cost of Living rebates: www.service.nsw.gov.au/campaign/cost-living

ROYAL COMMISSION UPDATE

Recently the government released the final report of the Royal Commission into the financial services sector. It's an important document which clearly calls out the need for change across the financial services industry.

The government has announced a comprehensive set of measures in response, and will now go about implementing the legislative and regulatory changes required for the recommendations to take effect. That process is likely to take a period of time to implement.

At Twomeys we welcome any changes that help to make high-quality advice available to more Australians. We are absolutely committed to continue to deliver a consistently high standard of service. We will keep our financial services clients updated on how the changes may impact their individual circumstances and what we will be doing to manage those changes.

If you have any questions about the Royal Commission or how we could potentially assist you with your financial advice needs, please contact Michael Gay.


The ATO has announced it will continue its data matching program of share transactions acquired between 20 September 1985 to 30 June 2018.

The objective of the program is to ensure that taxpayers are correctly meeting taxation obligations in relation to share transactions, including registration, lodgement, reporting and payment responsibilities.

In particular, the ATO will continue to acquire details of share transactions from sources such as Computershare, Link Market Services, Australian Securities Exchange, Boardroom and ASIC.

The ATO has enacted legislation to extend the industries required to report payments to contractors under the Taxable Payments Reporting System (TPRS) regime.

Road freight, IT and security investigation or surveillance industries will need to report payments from 1 July 2019.   This is in addition to the cleaning and courier industries which came under the TPRS from 1 July 2018, and the Building and Construction industry which has been required to report payments to contractors since 2012.

Rural financial counsellors help farmers who are dealing with, or are at risk of, financial hardship.  Rural financial counsellors can:

• Help identify financial and business options, including negotiating with lenders

• Help develop an action plan

• Help access the Farm Household Allowance (FHA)

• Provide information about government and other assistance schemes

• Provide referrals to accountants, agricultural advisers and educational services

• Provide referrals to Department of Human Services and to professionals for succession planning, family mediation and personal, emotional and social counselling.

There are 30 Rural Financial Counsellors located throughout NSW, including offices at Young, Forbes, Dubbo, Mudgee, Ganmain, Crookwell and Yass-Gundagai. A full list of Rural Financial Counsellors in NSW and their contact details can be found at http://www.agriculture. gov.au/ag-farm-food/drought/assistance/rural-financialcounselling-service/nsw. gov.au/ag-farm-food/drought/assistance/rural-financialcounselling-service/nsw.

CHRISTMAS PARTIES, GIFTS AND TAX

Many employers hold Christmas parties and give gifts to employees during the festive season, but may not be aware of the Income Tax, GST and Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) implications.

Christmas Gifts Generally, where the value of a gift given to an employee and their family members is $299 or less, then it is exempt from FBT.

If the gift of $299 or less is NOT entertainment, it is also tax deductible and a GST credit can be claimed, for example: - Christmas hamper, bottle of wine, gift voucher etc. If the gift of $299 or less IS considered entertainment, it is NOT tax deductible and a GST credit cannot be claimed, for example: - ticket to attend the theatre, movies, sporting event or amusement park, accommodation or airline ticket.

A gift to clients or suppliers does not attract FBT, is tax deductible and the GST credit can be claimed. Christmas Parties The FBT and tax treatment of Christmas parties is slightly more complicated, depending on the method chosen to calculate FBT and the cost of the entertainment provided. It does not matter whether the event is held on the employer's premises or at another venue.

Actual FBT method:

•  food, drink and entertainment cost $299 or less per head – no FBT, but not tax deductible and no GST credit claimable

•  food, drink and entertainment cost more than $299 – FBT payable, but is tax deductible and GST credit claimable

50:50 FBT method:

•  food, drink and entertainment (irrespective of cost) – 50% FBT payable, 50% tax deductible and 50% GST claimable

Food, drink and entertainment provided to clients and suppliers do not attract FBT, but are not tax deductible and  a GST credit cannot be claimed.

As a long-standing member firm of Count Financial, Twomeys makes a voluntary monthly donation to  The Count Charitable Foundation which aims to make a positive and lasting difference to the wellbeing of vulnerable and at-risk people in the communities in  which we live and work.  

The dedicated team at Young Meals on Wheels were  overwhelmed to receive a recent donation of $5,000 from  The Count Charitable Foundation.

Above left to right: Michael Gay, David Parr,  Jenny Rea, Kerrie Walsh, Jim Reeves, Stephen Thurn

TWOMEYS WELCOMES NEW PRINCIPAL

Stephen Thurn commenced with Twomeys as a Principal of the firm on 10 December 2018.

Stephen joins Twomeys from Deloitte Private's Sydney CDB office where he spent 11 years, the last five as a Principal.  Prior to Deloitte, Stephen worked for Grant Thornton, Horwarth's and other mid-tier firms, with a career spanning 30 years of Business Services and Family Enterprise Advisory work.  His first role of 8 years was with a small two partner practice with ten employees.

As an experienced Chartered Accountant in public practice, Stephen is well versed in the issues facing family businesses and high net wealth families, in managing large complex private client groups and with an ability to quickly gain a deep understanding of their business and service requirements.

Stephen has key expertise in providing a broad range of business and taxation services including business advice, private and corporate taxation consulting and compliance services, management reporting, taxation structuring, asset protection and estate planning.  He is experienced in managing the tax compliance and advisory affairs for complex groups including middle market enterprises, corporate groups, subsidiaries of multinationals, family owned businesses, professionals and high wealth individuals in a variety of industries

 Stephen grew up in Narrabri, is married to Kim, an interior designer, has two children (Tom 21 and Mili 18) , and is a passionate baseball player (currently looking for a new team). Stephen is based in Twomeys' Young Office and can be contacted on 02 6381 4200 or email stephen.thurn@twomeys.com.au