Tough rules enforced by ATO on overdue SMSF returns

Aug 10, 2018
minute read

The ATO is cracking down hard on overdue self-managed superannuation fund (SMSF) returns, and if you have more than one outstanding, expect the bar to be set even higher for your 17/18 return.

Critical points to note if your SMSF return is overdue:

  • If you have not submitted your 16/17 SMSF return, it is now overdue, and the ATO will have you on their radar. You now need to lodge the 16/17 return immediately to avoid further penalties.
  • If your 16/17 SMSF return (or other past returns) is overdue, your 17/18 SMSF return is now due early, a penalty handed down by the ATO. The typical 15 May 2019 lodgement date no longer applies to your return, you are now expected to lodge your 17/18 SMSF return on or before 31 Oct 2018.
  • If your SMSF return is not lodged by the due dates listed above, your fund will become non-complying; this means you could lose your concessional 15% tax rate and instead will pay 47% on contributions and earnings.

What other measures is the ATO taking to enforce compliance?

  • If your SMSF ‘shows no evidence of operating’ the ATO can cancel the ABN of your SMSF.
  • The ATO is writing to SMSF trustees to remind them of their legal requirements to lodge an SMSF tax return (even if in pension phase).
  • The ATO is focusing their efforts on SMSFs with high income or asset values, particularly those with overdue returns.
  • Undertaking audits on selected SMSFs.
  • Serious and substantial financial implications on SMSF’s that do not meet deadlines, this includes but is not limited to the loss of the concessional tax rate of 15% listed above.

How can we help?

  • If we are the tax agent for your SMSF, please contact Gina-Marie immediately to discuss the collection of relevant documents and lodgement of your overdue (or upcoming) SMSF return.
  • If you do not have a tax agent handling your SMSF, or would like to change tax agents, talk to us about your requirements. Our discovery meeting is complimentary, and we’re happy to help you in any way we can.

If you are considering setting up an SMSF, there are a multitude of factors that must be considered, from correct structuring, to its tax effective management. Our SMSF advisers would be happy to step you through the process. We’ll meet with you to understand your needs and circumstances and provide you with the best possible solution for your specific financial situation.

Contact us on (08) 9217 2400 or provide us with your details via our online form.

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