If you’re thinking of setting up your own self-managed super fund (SMSF), to take charge of your retirement and be able to make investment decisions, there are some important steps you have to take before you seek registration with the ATO such as choosing between individual trustees or a corporate trustee, creating the trust and…

ASIC, as co-regulators of SMSF auditors with the ATO, has provided details of its enforcement actions against over 100 SMSF auditors to protect consumers and the integrity of the superannuation system. Whilst the ATO is the one that monitors SMSF auditor compliance, ASIC is regulatory body that investigates any compliance matters that the ATO refers…

During the recent hearings of the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Corporations and Financial Services into ASIC’s oversight functions, the regulator responded to a range of questions regarding SMSF advice and provided policy solutions to be considered by the Committee around reforms to the SMSF sector. According to ASIC report 575 (SMSFs: Improving the quality of…

With the introduction of the transfer balance cap of $1.6m designed to limit the amount of capital that can be transferred into the tax-exempt retirement phase, certain events that track the movement of capital in and out of retirement phase, as well as other events now must be reported to the ATO to ensure the…

To be eligible for tax concessions available to super funds, SMSFs need to meet the sole purpose test. Essentially, this means that the SMSF needs to be maintained for the sole purpose of providing retirement benefits to its members or their dependents if a member dies before retirement. Although the question of whether the sole…

It’s been a little over a year since the dual changes of the pension transfer balance cap and the reduction of tax concessions for transition to retirement pensions were implemented by the government. Recent research has indicated that these changes has achieved their policy outcome by making almost 25% of previously tax-free SMSF assets lose…

How often must your SMSF be audited? Currently it is every year, but the government has proposed to extend this to a 3-year cycle. The benefits are meant to be less red tape and lower costs, but there are concerns that this may not be the outcome. Funds have to be audited and auditors have…

SMSFs and your retirement horizon Self-Managed Super Fund (SMSF) trustees often ask themselves, “What is the right mix of investments for my SMSF?” It’s a very common question, and one that will need to consider individual preference and the time until retirement. The answer will not be the same for everyone, even for members within…

How to help ensure your superannuation contributions don’t exceed the caps Changes in the superannuation contribution caps, which kicked-in last year, give an added reason to keep a close eye on your contributions. From 1 July 2017, the concessional (before tax) contributions cap was reset to $25,000 for everyone (irrespective of age). For those earning…

Use your SMSF to teach your kids about finance With self-managed super funds (SMSFs) permitted to have up to four members, it may be a surprise for some to learn that approximately 70% of SMSFs have only two members and about a further 23% only have one.  Which means that only 7% of funds have…

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