Monday, April 11, 2011

Government review of trusts – the journey continues

As most will know, the ongoing saga in relation to the taxation of trusts took another turn last week with Bill Shorten retracting his previous promise to ensure that post Bamford amendments would be implemented before 30 June 2011.

The government has now indicated that other than in relation to the streaming of income all other issues will not be considered further until the wider taxation review scheduled for October. This review has already been postponed once.

Practically the latest announcement may cause trust advisers to proceed with ‘core’ amendments (for example, ensuring that trustee minutes can be made after the end of a financial year) to trust deeds before 30 June 2011.

Two other important issues to note from last week in relation to trusts are that:

1. it now appears unlikely that there will be any change to the unpaid present entitlement rules released by the Tax Office before 30 June 2011.

2. the announcement that the Coalition will look to re-invigorate entity taxation (i.e. taxing trusts as companies) if they win the next election.

Until next week.