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Finance & Taxation in Australia

Appoint an SMSF auditor

SMSF Trustess must appoint an approved SMSF auditor to audit your fund each year, not later than 45 days before you need to lodge your SMSF annual return. The auditor examines your fund's financial statements and assesses your fund's compliance with super law.

PUBLIC SERVANTS - Australian Budget 2015

Jobs are expected to go from federal departments as the government continues its plan to shrink the size of bureaucracy. A total of $244 million is forecast to be saved over the next four years through cuts to the education and health departments. The government will also axe 35 government bodies.

WELFARE REFORM - Australian Budget 2015

People who rort Australia’s welfare system are on notice. The government will return about $1.5 billion to the Budget’s bottom line over four years by increasing the capability of the Department of Human Services to detect, investigate and deter suspected welfare fraud and non-compliance. This will include $60 million for the department’s technology systems to help track down cheats.

FOREIGN WORKERS - Australian Budget 2015

Foreigners who’ve come to Australia on a working holiday visa will no longer enjoy the $18,000 tax-free threshold. From day one, every dollar they earn in Australia will be taxed.

PENSION REFORM - Australian Budget 2015

About 91,000 people will receive no payments and another 235,000 will be worse off, as the government tightens the assets test for the age pension. Pensioners with assets of more than $823,000 (excluding the family home) will no longer receive any pension payments. The threshold used to be $1.15 million.

PARENTS BENEFITS - Australian Budget 2015

As many as 80,000 expectant parents will be $11,500 worse off as the government stamps out paid parental leave “double dipping”. Stay-at-home parents whose household income is more than $65,000 will lose all childcare subsidies while expectant mothers will no longer be able to claim both the government’s paid parental leave scheme and an employer paid parental leave scheme.

FARMERS - Australian Budget 2015

Struggling farmers will be given $300 million for drought assistance. They will also enjoy tax breaks for spending on water facilities, fodder storage and new fencing.

MEDICAL SYSTEM - Australian Budget 2015

Australians who are unwell can expect generic medicines to drop in price under changes to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme. Some over-the-counter medications will be dropped from the PBS completely, while $1.6 billion in new and expensive medicines will be funded for the first time. The Medical Research Future Fund will receive $400 million over the next four years.

INFRASTRUCTURE - Australian Budget 2015

Australia’s sparsely populated Top End is set for a massive injection of cash. A $5 billion fund will provide loans to private enterprise to build major projects such as rail lines, ports, electricity and pipe lines. There’s also $100 million to build better transport links for the cattle industry.

WORKING PARENTS - Australian Budget 2015

Working parents earning between $65,000 and $170,000 will be about $30 a week better off after the government resolved to simplify childcare subsidies. The subsidy will be paid directly to childcare providers, meaning fewer upfront expenses for parents.