Monthly Archives: November 2016

New non-concessional contribution limits

The super changes first announced in this year’s Budget were passed by the Senate on Wednesday. With that we now have a much lower new non-concessional contribution limit; that being the after tax contributions one can make into their super fund which are not taxed when received by a super fund – that is those monies that go into a super fund tax free and which come out tax free.

The current limit is $180,000 per annum but that will fall to $100,000 from July 2017. And with the concessional limit then also falling to $25,000, many people will have to re-calculate how they are going to accumulate sufficient capital upon which they can retire.

The bring forward rule will remain. That rule allows those under 65 to make three year’s worth of non-concessional contributions in one year whether that be from an inheritance, windfall or proceeds from an asset sale.  In the future, this means that no more than $300,000 can be contributed in any one year.  The limit to 30th June 2017 remains at $540,000 but is subject to what has already been described by some as an unusual and complicated transitional rule.  Whilst the limit may remain at $540,000 for this financial year, it will be less for those who under contributed in 2015/16 or do so in 2016/17.  Make sure you understand what your limit is before making any non-concessional contributions before 30th June 2017.

At MRS, we will spend today planning for your success tomorrow.

New super rules now law

Those largely unpleasant superannuation changes announced in this year’s Budget are now law.  The Senate passed them yesterday.

As we explained to out clients in a seminar on Tuesday night, wile some of the changes are quite positive, many them will have substantial impacts upon how people can accumulate wealth for retirement.  Indeed, with a new concessional (deductible) cap of only $25,000 from July 2017, it will become difficult for many to fund their retirement through super as their parents did.  If it wasn’t already true enough, many people will be forced to address their retirement planning at a much earlier stage in life.

Ignorance and inaction rarely pay off and doing nothing will cost some a great deal.  It is critical you understand what you need to do under the adverse changes and what you can do to make the most of the positive changes.

Single Touch Payroll is coming

Single Touch Payroll is coming. Single Touch Payroll (STP) will require all employers to report to the ATO at the time of every pay how much they are paying and to whom.  No more advising the total of all wages at W1 and tax thereon at W2 on the following activity statement (with the detail only being provided to the ATO with the supply of the PAYG Payment Summaries after the end of the year).

A test program is underway. It will become optional from July 2017 and mandatory for all employers with 20 or more employees from July 2018.  Once the systems is fully up and running the need for PAYG Payment Summaries (group certificates) will be dropped as the ATO will know exactly how much has been paid as of an employee’s last pay.  Employees will be able go into their MyGov account and see these details – as well as the super that is to be paid.

STP will also allow employers to provide employers with TFN Declarations and Super Choice forms.

Thankfully it was announced in September that the proposed requirement for employers to pay the PAYG WH to the ATO at the time employers are paid has been dropped – exactly how cashed up did they think the typical small & medium sized business is?

So if you don’t have a complying and/or efficient payroll system, now is the time to explore your options. Speak to us about your options and what you need to do.

At MRS, we will spend today planning for your success tomorrow.

Unfair contract term protection

As of 12th November 2016, unfair contract term protection that apply to consumers will be extended to cover standard form small business contracts.

Standard form small business contracts are ones where one of the parties has limited or no opportunity to negotiate the terms therein. Small businesses are businesses that employee less than 20 people.  Employees of related entities are not counted against this limit.

This new form of protection will apply to contracts entered into or varied on or after 12th November, 2016 for contracts of less than $300,000, or $1,000,000 if the contract is for more than 12 months. 

Terms that can be found to be unfair include those that enable one party but not the other two:-

  • Avoid or limit their obligations under the contract,
  • Terminate the contract,
  • Penalise one party for breaching or terminating the contract, or
  • Unable one party to vary the terms of the contract.

However, the law does not provide relief from the upfront price payable under a contract.

So, as from yesterday, standard form contracts “forced” upon a small business can be found to be unfair by a court or tribunal. The effect is that that a term can be disregarded (but the balance of the contract remains in place).

We have all heard of cases or know of first hand situations where small business owners being unfairly treated by large businesses. This amendment to Australian Consumer Law is not only welcome, but long overdue.  Too many businesses and indeed family lives have been ruined by conduct that can now be prevented.

Very few accountants provide their clients with anything like the free tips, education, seminars and literature that we do. Please let all your small business owner colleagues know of this welcome relief.

If you would like to know more about these new provisions, please refer to the frequently asked questions provided by the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) at:-


At MRS, we will spend today planning for your success tomorrow.


Should your SMSF be registered for GST

Should your SMSF be registered for GST?  Unless it has to be because of its turnover, I suggest not. 

A fund can’t claim back all of the GST on its accounting, actuarial and audit fees. It therefore means that the cost of the time required by the trustees and the accountant are usually far less than any minor GST claim.

If your fund is registered for GST because of commercial rents, then that may be a different story. The fund will be able to claim back all of the GST it incurs on commercial property expenses – but gain it is an equation of time & cost versus GST claimed back.

We welcome your call if you are not sure what is best for your fund.

At MRS, we will spend today planning for your success tomorrow.