ATO flags new LRBA reporting in SAR


The ATO has highlighted key updates to the 2020 SMSF annual return form, including a change to LRBA reporting requirements.

The ATO has notified trustees of changes to the 2020 SMSF annual return (SAR) form and highlighted the inclusion of a new label affecting funds with limited recourse borrowing arrangements (LRBA).

The regulator advised trustees their SAR forms for the 2020 financial year, available at the end of May, would include a change to LRBA reporting requirements flagged by the ATO last year following the Treasury Laws Amendment (2018 Superannuation Measures No 1) Bill 2019 receiving royal assent on 2 October.

“A label called Property Count will be added to Section H, Assets and Liabilities,” it said in an update on its website.

“This label will report the number of real properties your SMSF holds investments in that were held in trust as security under an LRBA.”

It also confirmed the Death Benefit Increase Deduction label would be removed from the new SAR form as a result of SMSFs no longer being able to claim a deduction for a tax saving amount paid on the death of a member, a change which took effect on 1 July 2019.

“This change will ensure consistent treatment of lump sum death benefits across all super funds,” it said.

In addition, it reminded trustees there would be a change to the auditor qualification question on the form.

“You will be able to report ‘No’ at Part A qualification Label A when the audit report was qualified as a result of the auditor not being able to obtain sufficient audit evidence with respect to the SMSF’s opening balances,” it noted.

“Reporting whether issue/s have been rectified or not now applies to Part B qualifications only.”

In a separate reminder, the regulator warned trustees that SMSFs that were more than two weeks overdue on any annual return lodgement and had not requested a deferral would have the status of the fund changed to ‘Regulation details removed’ on the ATO’s Super Fund Lookup (SFLU) facility.

“This status will remain until any overdue lodgements have been brought up to date,” it said, repeating a warning it first issued in September 2019.

The changed SFLU status would prevent employers from making contribution payments into the fund and would also mean Australian Prudential Regulation Authority-regulated funds would be unable to roll over benefits to the fund, it added.

Last week, the ATO reminded trustees they were legally required to appoint an SMSF auditor for their fund before the end of March or face the possibility of a large fine.

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