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CEO slams data standards compliance extension

The federal government’s decision to extend the time frame within which superannuation funds have to comply with the new SuperStream arrangements has come under fire from an industry practitioner.

Superannuation funds now have up to 1 July 2015 to comply with the new data standards. Originally these funds had to be SuperStream compliant by 1 July this year.

According to SuperGuardian and Xpress Super chief executive Olivia Long, the industry had been “given plenty of notice” from the Australian Taxation Office to comply with the new standards.

“Frankly there’s no excuse for practitioners not to be ready for these changes. Firms that have invested capital and made the effort to get ready are effectively being penalised,” Long said.

She noted industry associations in support of the delay “are merely serving the interest of their underperforming members”.

SuperStream might have some impact on SMSFs as some funds would have to get professional advice to meet the new standards, she said.

“Going forward, all SMSFs will be required to have a bank account and an electronic service address that are able to receive employer contribution payments and messages sent electronically using the SuperStream standard,” she said.

She pointed out the technological changes in the industry were another example of why accountants should consider outsourcing their SMSF work to SMSF accounting specialists.

“The industry is continually changing and for many small accounting practices it is simply proving too difficult to stay ahead of the game,” she said.

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