Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Stamp duty on changes of trustee

One issue that is coming up increasingly regularly is changing trustees of either family trusts or self managed superannuation funds.

Generally, there are no tax consequences on the change of trustee for any form of trust (including a superannuation fund).

In each Australian State, there are also provisions that provide a stamp duty rollover on the change of trusteeship.

Care must always be taken however to review at least two issues from a stamp duty perspective.

Firstly, care must be taken to ensure that the correct state law is being applied. There can be complications in this regard where a trust is setup under one jurisdiction, but it has substantial assets in another state.

Once this threshold issue has been resolved, the exact provisions of the relevant stamp duty legislation need to be considered. While each state has similar provisions, there are differences. One example in this regard is that in New South Wales (among other things), any new trustee cannot be a potential beneficiary under the terms of the trust.

Until next week.