Calculating components of clients’ total super balance and increased Australian Tax Office reporting requirements are among the matters that are front of mind for advisers now that July 1 has passed.

In the lead-up to the new financial year, advisers were grappling with some of the biggest changes to superannuation in a decade, say John Maroney, chief executive of the Self Managed Super Fund Association. Now that the deadline has passed, the focus has shifted to long-term SMSF strategy, but some of the prevailing concerns include the detail of new requirements.

Since Maroney took the reins in April, one of the top questions he has received has been about the elements that make up the so-called total super balance and how to share the right information with the ATO.

“The total super balance has caused a lot of confusion… [especially the matter of] how to calculate different components of total super balance,” Maroney says.

The ATO intends to introduce an “event-based reporting system”, which would allow it greater and more frequent oversight over SMSF transactions, on a transitional basis at first and then a full-time basis from next year.

“The plan is for SMSFs to report on a monthly basis if anything significant has happened during the month,” Maroney says.

One of the queries from advisers has been which changes to a member’s total balance would trigger the new reporting requirements, he says.

The SMSFA has partnered with the ATO to disseminate up-to-date information to advisers and trustees about their obligations.

At the SMSFA’s Technical Day Series across Australia this month, the ATO Tax Counsel Network will present a session on the precise expectations of advisers in relation to clients’ ingoing and outgoing funds. Other questions the session intends to answer include the implications of the total super balance changes for clients’ ability to make or bring forward non-concessional contributions.

The SMSF Association’s 2017 Technical Day Series kicks off in Sydney on July 18. Full-day sessions will also be hosted in Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth. To register, click here.

 

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