Resources

The G J Walsh & Co team has been providing a unique brand of accounting advice to a range of small to medium sized businesses for over 20 years.

What is an ABN? / When do I require an ABN?
  • Australian Business Number (ABN) is a unique identification number issued by the Australian Business Register (ABR) which was introduced on 1 July 2000 to enable businesses in Australia to deal with a range of government departments/agencies using a single identification number.

 

  • An ABN is required for the following:

• Operate in the GST system, including claiming of GST credits
• Confirm your business identity to others when ordering & invoicing
• Avoid amounts being withheld from payments to you at 46.5%
• Get an AUSkey to transact online with government agencies
• Be endorsed as a gift deductible recipient or an income tax exempt charity
• Claim energy grants credits
• Obtain an Australian domain name

 

Follow the link to apply for your ABN online – https://abr.gov.au/. If you need further advice, don’t hesitate in contacting our office.

Do I need to register for GST Registration?
  • You need to register for GST if your turnover is $75,000 or more ($150,000 or more for non-profit organisations);
  • Want to claim fuel tax credits for your business;
  • Provide taxi travel.
I have a second job, will I be taxed 50%

This depends on how much you have will be earning per year. You always should ensure you claim the tax free threshold on your job that is paying the highest wage. Your 2nd job will be taxed at a higher rate, however this won’t necessarily be at the top marginal tax rate (47.5% for taxable income over $180,000 for 2013-14) as it depends on how much you earn.

Can you assist with questions regarding redundancy?
  • Genuine redundancy payment is made to an employee who is dismissed because the job they were doing is made redundant
  • A genuine redundancy payment is tax free upto a limit based on your years of service with your employer
  • Tax-Free limit for year ending 30 June 2014 is [$9,246+($4,624 x years of service)]
  • Genuine redundancy payments are shown at ‘Lump sum D’ on your payment summary & are not assessable
  • Distinguishing features of a non-genuine redundancy (therefore taxed as an ETP) include:

• Dismissal because you reach retirement age;
• Leave voluntarily;
• Contract is terminated;
• Disciplinary or inefficiency reasons.

 

  • Any amount over the tax free limit is taxed as an employment termination payment (ETP)
  • Concessional tax treatment of an ETP if the payment is made within 12 months of termination. Otherwise, payments made outside the 12 month period are taxed at your marginal tax rates
  • The 12 month rule however doesn’t apply to the taxable component of a genuine redundancy
  • Tax treatment of the taxable portion of your genuine redundancy is based on your preservation age & ETP cap
  • For further assistance on this matter please contact our office.
Can you assist with or process estate tax returns?

G J Walsh & Co’s professional team offer expert guidance in this area. The death of someone close to you can be a traumatic time. We will take the time to guide you through the necessary tax obligations for the deceased person or their estate.

Can you help if there are multiple years of tax returns?

Our office can lodge your tax returns as far back as required.

Can you provide advice regarding salary sacrifice?
  • Our office can setup a detailed proposal for salary sacrificing as part of your wage with your employer
  • “Type of benefits generally salary sacrificed include fringe benefits (cars, property & expense payments), exempt benefits (portable electronic device, computer software, protective clothing, briefcase, tools of trade) & superannuation”
Can you provide assistance with TFN applications?

Our office can apply for a tax file number on your behalf for any type of entity or individual. We will require a few simple details to enable us to complete the application such as full name, date of birth & address. Please contact our office & we can arrange this for you.

Can you advise regarding land tax?

Yes. Land tax is a tax on freehold land & varies from state to state.

 

In Queensland, no land tax is payable unless the taxable value of that land is greater than $600,000 for individuals or greater than $350,000 for companies, trustees & absentees

 

Various exemptions apply to home owners, primary producers, moveable dwelling parks, charitable institutions & other exemptions (aged care facilities, associations, retirement villages & supported accommodation)

 

For further detail regarding land tax, please contact our office.

Can you advise the implications of capital gains tax regarding the sale of property, shares or a business?

Our office can forecast any expected CGT gains or losses on the sale of your investment property, shares & business.

 

Depending on the date you purchased & sold your investment, will determine any potential discounts that can be applied to any capital gains.

 

Property & shares held for 12 months or more, will allow the use of the discount method, thus providing a 50% reduction in any potential capital gains

 

For the sale of a business, if you meet certain conditions, you can apply as many of the four CGT small business concessions as you’re entitled to until the capital gain is reduced to nil.

 

Contact our office to discuss any capital gains tax queries that you may have

Can you provide advice regarding the super co-contribution?

If you make personal (after tax) super contributions to your superfund, you may be eligible for the government co-contribution up to a maximum amount of $500 in 2013-14.

 

To be eligible for the super co-contribution, you must first meet several requirements:

 

  • Your total income for the financial year (2013-14) must be less than $48,516
  • Receive 10% or more of your total income from eligible employment related activities or carrying on a business
  • Less than 71 years old at the end of the financial year
  • Did not hold a temporary visa at any time during the year (unless you are a New Zealand citizen or it was a prescribed visa)
  • Must have lodged your tax return for the relevant financial year
Can you advise someone about what they can and can’t claim in their tax return?

Expenses you can’t claim are those that are private/domestic in nature & not related to your work

Knowing what you can claim on your tax return can be categorised into a few basic areas:

• Vehicle & travel expenses:

➢ Vehicle & travel expenses directly connected with your work can be claimed, but not for normal trips between home & work as these are considered private travel

 

• Clothing, laundry & dry cleaning:

➢ Cost of buying & cleaning occupation specific clothing, protective clothing & unique distinctive uniforms are claimable expenses.

 

• Gifts & donations:

➢ Gifts/donations made to organisations that have the status of deductible gift recipient are claimable

 

• Home office expenses:

➢ If you perform some of your work from home in office set aside for work, you may be entitled to claim various running costs such as home office equipment, phone rental/work calls/internet for the portion reflecting work use, & other items such as a portion of electricity usage based on diary records of time spent performing your work duties
➢ Generally occupancy expenses such as rent, mortgage interest, rates & home insurance are not deductible unless you run a business from home

 

• Interest, dividend other investment income deductions:

➢ Expenses claimable might include account keeping fees for accounts held for investment purposes, management fees & advice relating to changes in the mix of your investments, interest charged on money borrowed to purchase shares/other investments

 

• Self-education expenses:

➢ Where there has been further study undertaken through a formal qualification that directly relates to your current employment, you can claim various expenses such as:

 

• Course fees
• Depreciation on equipment
• Text books
• Travel
• Internet usage
• Parking
• Phone calls
• Stationery

➢ For further detail of claimable self-education expenses, please contact our office.

• Tools, equipment & other assets that assist in you earning income

 

For details of other deductions not listed, the rule of thumb is that if the expense was made to earn your income & not private/domestic in nature

Can you help a client obtain a depreciation report / quantity surveyor report?

Absolutely!
A depreciation schedule prepared by a specialist Quantity Surveying firm helps to ensure that you are maximising the cash return from your investment property. As the owner of an investment property you’re entitled to claim depreciation on your building and its fixtures and fittings. Claiming depreciation is a significant taxation benefit, and one which many investors are unaware of. Depreciation is a non-cash deduction – you do not need to spend any money to claim it.

Can you complete my tax return if I am missing a PAYG Payment Summary (group certificate)?

Generally the answer to this question is yes. A requirement by the Australian Taxation Office is that employers lodge PAYG Payment Summaries and an Annual Report by the 14th August each year. If this information is lodged correctly and in a timely manner then we should be able to obtain this information from the ATO>

I received an additional PAYG Payment Summary (group certificate) after I completed last year’s tax return. Can I put it in this year’s return?

No, the payment summary needs to be included in the year of issue. We would have to amend last year’s return to include this information.

When are employers legally required to issue PAYG Payment Summaries?

The ATO advise that employers should issue payment summaries to their employees by 14th July every year.

What We Do

We provide proactive business solutions to our clients. We journey with our clients to make informed decisions that suit their needs.

Who We Are

We are a dynamic group of professionals with a commitment to excellance and a willingness to deliver the best result everytime

Key Dates

View key dates for the 2014-15 financial year and keep your books up to date.

What business structure is right for my business

There are a number of structures that you can choose from when establishing your business. The four main types of business structures commonly used by small to medium sized businesses are:

 

  • Sole trader: an individual trading on their own
  • Partnership: an association of people or entities running a business together, but not as a company
  • Trust: an entity that holds property or income for the benefit of others
  • Company: a legal entity separate from its shareholders.

 

When deciding upon a structure for your business, choose the one that best suits your business needs and remember that there are advantages and disadvantages for each. Choosing your business structure is an important decision that can determine the licenses you will need to operate, so you need to investigate each option carefully.

What is an ABN? / When do I require an ABN?

Australian Business Number (ABN) is a unique identification number issued by the Australian Business Register (ABR) which was introduced on 1 July 2000 to enable businesses in Australia to deal with a range of government departments/agencies using a single identification number.

 

An ABN is required for the following:

 

  • Operate in the GST system, including claiming of GST credits
  • Confirm your business identity to others when ordering & invoicing
  • Avoid amounts being withheld from payments to you at 46.5%
  • Get an AUSkey to transact online with government agencies
  • Be endorsed as a gift deductible recipient or an income tax exempt charity
  • Claim energy grants credits
  • Obtain an Australian domain name

 

Follow the link to apply for your ABN online – https://abr.gov.au/. If you need further advice, don’t hesitate in contacting our office.

Do I need to register for GST Registration?

You need to register for GST if your turnover is $75,000 or more ($150,000 or more for non-profit organisations);

 

  • Want to claim fuel tax credits for your business;
  • Provide taxi travel.
What accounting software do you recommend?

We don’t discriminate. We work with our clients and work with the software that suits their needs. A majority of our clients use MYOB. We are also experienced using Xero, Quickbooks and many industry specific software programs.

I'm based in another city. Can G J Walsh & Co still help us.

G J Walsh & Co has clients located Australia wide. We are happy to use the convenience of modern technology to service our client base.

Can I trade in a Company Structure. Can you assist and provide advice regarding setting up?

Registered companies are the most common and well understood entities for carrying on a business. A company is a separate legal entity and includes corporations, public companies, and proprietary limited organisations (Pty Ltd).

 

As companies are now permitted to have a single shareholder/director, even the smallest business can choose to operate through a corporate structure. At the other end of the scale, public companies can either list on a stock exchange or remain unlisted.

 

Advantages:

 

  • provides asset protection and limitation of liability for owners
  • business income is taxed at the corporate rate of 30 percent
  • profits are retained and accumulated in the company
  • franked dividends allow shareholders credits for company tax paid
  • corporate groups can utilise benefits of tax consolidation regime
  • easily understood and accepted by prospective financiers
  • can raise additional capital by listing on a stock exchange.

 

Disadvantages:

 

  • relatively high establishment costs and ongoing operating costs
  • more complicated structure
  • loans to shareholders may result in deemed dividends
  • more difficult to access CGT concessions on sale of business
  • companies can’t claim 50 percent CGT discount on sale of assets
  • succession planning can be more complicated and involved.
What is a family trust?

The term family trust refers to a discretionary trust set up to hold a family’s assets or to conduct a family business. Generally, they are established for asset protection or tax purposes.

 

  • is generally established by a family member for the benefit of members of the ‘family group’;
  • can be the subject of a family trust election which provides it with certain tax advantages, provided that the trust passes the family control test and makes distributions of trust income only to beneficiaries of the trust who are within the ‘family group’;
  • can assist in protecting the family group’s assets from the liabilities of one or more of the family members (for instance, in the event of a family member’s bankruptcy or insolvency);
  • provides a mechanism to pass family assets to future generations; and
  • can provide a means of accessing favourable taxation treatment by ensuring all family members use their income tax “tax-free thresholds”.
Can you assist and provide advice regarding setting up a new sole trader business?
As a sole trader you retain complete control of your business

 

There is no division between business assets or personal assets, which includes your share of any assets jointly owned with another person (such as your house or car). Your liability is unlimited which means that personal assets can be used to pay business debts.

 

Sole traders pay income tax at personal tax rates

 

Sole traders are taxed as individuals and pay income tax at personal tax rates. This means your business income is declared on your personal tax return along with any other assessable income (such as your salary or wages, interest, dividends).

 

The advantages and disadvantages of a sole trader

 

Advantages

  • Simple set up and operation.
  • You retain complete control of your assets and business decisions.
  • Fewer reporting requirements.
  • Any losses incurred by your business activities, may be offset against other income earned (such as your investment income or wages). Subject to certain conditions.
  • You are not considered an employee of your own business and are free of any obligation to pay payroll tax, superannuation contributions or workers’ compensation on income your draw from the business.
  • Relatively easy to change your legal structure if the business grows, or if you wish to wind things up.

Disadvantages

  • Unlimited liability which means all your personal assets are at risk if things go wrong.
  • Little opportunity for tax planning – you can’t split business profits or losses made with family members and you are personally liable to pay tax on all the income derived.

What We Do

We provide proactive business solutions to our clients. We journey with our clients to make informed decisions that suit their needs.

Who We Are

We are a dynamic group of professionals with a commitment to excellance and a willingness to deliver the best result everytime

Key Dates

View key dates for the 2014-15 financial year and keep your books up to date.

How do I know the difference between and employee and a sub-contractor?

An employee works in your business and is part of your business, whereas a contractor is running their own business.

 

The following table outlines the differences between employees and contractors based on the six factors which need to be considered when determining whether a worker is an employee or contractor.

 

Employee

Characteristics of an employee include the following.

Contractor

Characteristics of a contractor include the following.

Ability to sub-contract/delegate: the worker cannot sub-contract/delegate the work – they cannot pay someone else to do the work. Ability to sub-contract/delegate: the worker is free to sub-contract/delegate the work – they can pay someone else to do the work.
Basis of payment: the worker is paid

  • for the time worked
  • a price per item or activity
  • a commission.

 

Basis of payment: the worker is paid for a result achieved based on the quote they provided.
Equipment, tools and other assets:

  • your business provides all or most of the equipment, tools and other assets required to complete the work, or
  • the worker provides all or most of the equipment, tools and other assets required to complete the work, but your business provides them with an allowance or reimburses them for the cost of the equipment, tools and other assets.

 

Equipment, tools and other assets:

  • the worker provides all or most of the equipment, tools and other assets required to complete the work
  • the worker does not receive an allowance or reimbursement for the cost of this equipment, tools and other assets.

 

Commercial risks: the worker takes no commercial risks. Your business is legally responsible for the work performed by the worker and liable for the cost of rectifying any defect in the work. Commercial risks: the worker takes commercial risks, with the worker being legally responsible for their work and liable for the cost of rectifying any defect in their work.
Control over the work: your business has the right to direct the way in which the worker performs their work. Control over the work: the worker has freedom in the way the work is done subject to the specific terms in any contract or agreement.
Independence: the worker is not operating independently from your business. They work within and are considered part of your business. Independence: the worker is operating their own business independently from your business. The worker performs services as specified in their contract or agreement and is free to accept or refuse additional work.
What is payroll tax. Do I have to pay it?

If you are an employer (or group of employers) who employs in Queensland and your Australian taxable wages are $1.1 million or more a year, then you must pay payroll tax.

What rate of Superannuation do I need to pay my employees?

Superannuation Guarantee (SG) is the official term for compulsory superannuation contributions made by employers on behalf of their employees. An employer, regardless of whether they are a small or large business, must contribute the equivalent of 9.25% of an employee’s salary, from July 2013 (previously the SG percentage was 9%). Note that effective from July 2014, the SG percentage is set to increase to 9.5%. The below table shows the forecasted change to SG amounts.

 

Period Super guarantee rate (charge percentage)
1 July 2002 – 30 June 2013 9%
1 July 2013 – 30 June 2014 9.25%
1 July 2014 – 30 June 2015 9.5%
1 July 2015 – 30 June 2016 10%
1 July 2016 – 30 June 2017 10.5%
1 July 2017 – 30 June 2018 11%
1 July 2018 – 30 June 2019 11.5%
1 July 2019 – 30 June 2020 and onwards 12%
Workcover - Who is covered?

Your WorkCover accident insurance policy covers any workers you employ. From 1 July 2013, a worker is ‘a person who works under a contract and, in relation to the work, is an employee for the purpose of assessment for PAYG withholding under the Taxation Administration Act 1953 (Cwlth), schedule 1, part 2-5’ (s11 of the Act)

 

Directors, partners or the sole trader of your own business are not covered. If you are paying other businesses for their services, their workers are not covered under your policy—they are required to have their own policy.

What We Do

We provide proactive business solutions to our clients. We journey with our clients to make informed decisions that suit their needs.

Who We Are

We are a dynamic group of professionals with a commitment to excellance and a willingness to deliver the best result everytime

Key Dates

View key dates for the 2014-15 financial year and keep your books up to date.

What is an SMSF?

A self-managed super fund (SMSF) is a type of superannuation scheme that is set up to provide retirement income for the members of that fund.

 

An SMSF is a trust where the beneficiaries are also the members. An SMSF must pass the ‘sole purpose’ test, that is, it exists for the sole purpose of providing retirement funding.

 

An SMSF can have a maximum of four members. In reality, most self-managed super funds are set up by a couple.

What are the benefits of an SMSF?

Some of the benefits people see in running their own superannuation fund are:

 

  • Greater choice of investments – including, for instance, commercial real estate and collectables
  • Flexibility of tax planning and deferment of tax payments
  • You can transfer assets ‘in specie’ – e.g shares, commercial real estate, term deposits
  • Pool family assets into one vehicle, pay one fee (note that the entitlements of individual members will be accounted for)

Flexibility regarding transition to retirement options, which can be very beneficial from a tax perspective
Access to franking credits, which can be offset against tax payable by your super fund (or you can receive a refund if no tax is payable)

However, setting up a SMSF is not for everyone. It does require at least a basic knowledge of the legislation that they as Trustees must comply with and the use of an experienced superannuation adviser.

Can I set up an SMSF with one member?
  • It is possible to set up your super fund with only one member.
  • If your single member fund has a corporate trustee, the member must be one of the following:
  • the sole director of the corporate trustee
  • one of only two directors, that is either
  • related to the other director
  • any other person but not an employer of the member.

 

If you choose not to have a corporate trustee, you must have two individual trustees. One trustee must be the member and the other must be a trustee that is either:

 

  • a person related to the member
  • any other person but not an employer of the member.
What can an SMSF invest in?
  • Shares (domestic and international).
  • Managed funds.
  • Property (domestic and commercial).
  • Certain related unit trusts.
Can you assist and provide advice regarding setting up a new self managed fund?

We can help you with all aspects of setting up a self managed superannuation fund (SMSF) – from preparing the trust deed and the relevant trustee declarations to lodging Australian Taxation Office (ATO) forms and establishing a cash management account for the fund. We have financial planners available to help with your investment options.

What We Do

We provide proactive business solutions to our clients. We journey with our clients to make informed decisions that suit their needs.

Who We Are

We are a dynamic group of professionals with a commitment to excellance and a willingness to deliver the best result everytime

Key Dates

View key dates for the 2014-15 financial year and keep your books up to date.

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What We Do

We provide proactive business solutions to our clients. We journey with our clients to make informed decisions that suit their needs.

Who We Are

We are a dynamic group of professionals with a commitment to excellance and a willingness to deliver the best result everytime

Key Dates

View key dates for the 2014-15 financial year and keep your books up to date.