SMSFA, ATO working on super implementation

The SMSF Association has revealed it is already working closely with the ATO and will do so on an ongoing basis now the industry is well and truly at the implementation stage with the recent superannuation changes.

“If you are concerned about how the changes affect your clients, as well as the compliance, please let us know because we are taking those issues to the ATO in order to help them implement the changes in the best way possible,” association head of policy Jordan George told the SMSF Association 2017 National Conference in Melbourne today.

George said the SMSF industry peak body was ready to support the sector in relation to the changes and would continue to publish its technical go-to guides, as well as run a series of intensive workshops in a month’s time to help members prepare their clients for the 1 July start date for the new measures.

“We’ll also publish our regular Technically Speaking bulletins and update you on any interpretation changes and things we’ve come to be made aware of,” he said.

He said he believed the key issues for SMSFs were transition-to-retirement (TTR) pensions, the $1.6 million transfer balance cap, capital gains tax (CGT) relief, maximising contributions and estate planning.

“We are very much up to the implementation [stage] today and most of these changes kick in on 1 July,” he stressed.

“While the laws may not have the biggest effect on TTRs, except for the tax treatment, in terms of numbers, we think it will affect the most people – there are more people out there with a TTR than a $1.6 million balance in super.

“So we think TTRs is going to be a major issue for people to work out what to do going into 1 July.

“With the $1.6 million transfer balance cap – this has got to be some of the most complex legislation that we’ve seen for a long time in super – there are multiple issues to work through.”

He also said the association was receiving a high number of inquiries about the CGT relief rules as it was another highly complex change.

“It’s something we’ll need more clarity from the ATO on how exactly the law will work,” he said.

“All of these things build into estate planning for SMSFs, especially the $1.6 million transfer balance cap, so it’s something you ought to think about carefully.”

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