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Superannuation

SMSF specialists urged to grasp super changes

The SMSF Association has advised SMSF specialists to quickly digest the details of the federal government’s superannuation legislation, which was passed by both houses unamended on 23 November.

Head of policy Jordan George said the legislation introduced some significant changes to super and it was imperative SMSF specialists understood how the goalposts had moved so they were able to advise their trustee clients accordingly.

“It includes complicated transitional capital gains tax (CGT) relief and the need to re-evaluate strategies around reversionary pensions, small business CGT contributions and how the operation of the cap will affect existing income streams,” George noted.

“In addition, changes to the concessional and non-concessional contribution (NCC) caps mean that SMSF specialists should be looking to maximise the current rules before lower caps take effect on 1 July 2017.

“Remember, too, complex transitional rules apply to fund members who may have triggered the non-concessional contribution bring-forward rule, or are approaching the $1.6 million superannuation balance that limits NCCs from 1 July 2017.”

In addition, he said advisers should also assist clients with existing transition-to-retirement pensions that would no longer have tax-free earnings from 1 July 2017.

“This advice need paints a complicated operating environment for SMSF specialists and it is important that they understand the legislation and its strategic implications for clients,” he noted.

“To assist in the process, the association is supplying members with a series of comprehensive go-to guides to assist them understand the legislation.”

The SMSF Association 2017 National Conference in February next year would also address those issues in great depth and members should take advantage of hearing from experts on all the implications of the legislative changes, he said.

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