The Tax Specialist

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Designed for the specialist tax professional, The Tax Specialist journal is essential reading for corporate tax advisers, accountants, lawyers and academics. Featuring in-depth analysis, opinion and argument on legislative, administrative and judicial issues it is published five times per year and is available by subscription. Also known as the Red Journal.

The Tax Specialist covers the latest issues affecting your role and your business, including:

  • consolidations
  • mergers and acquisitions
  • international tax
  • GST securitisation
  • venture capital
  • legal professional privilege
  • Part IVA
  • TOFA, and more.

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Australia’s leading journal for corporate tax professionals, is now also available on iPad and Android.

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Articles from the current issue:

  • Excess superannuation contributions: Your worst nightmare or your best friend? Add to cart

    01 Aug 2015

    Although the rules which govern taxation of contributions to the superannuation system remain extremely complex and subject to constant reform, the consequences for exceeding annual contribution limits have been moderated considerably in recent years. This article will critically examine changes to the taxation of contributions since 1 July 2012, namely, the impact of the excess contributions tax regime in respect of excess concessional contributions and excess non-concessional contributions, the imposition of the Div 293 surcharge, and the availability of the Commissioner’s discretion to disregard or reallocate excess contributions to another income year.

    The article will consider the reasons for change, the effect on taxpayers, and issues in respect of implementation of the changes. The author concludes with the opinion that, while reform of the excess contributions tax has improved the equity and integrity of the superannuation system, taxpayers remain exposed to the burden of legislative risk impacting certainty and confidence while working and saving for retirement.

  • Is Subdiv 815-B on transfer pricing overly prescriptive? Add to cart

    01 Aug 2015

    Australia’s domestic transfer pricing laws underwent two waves of reform in recent years. While judicial decisions and administrative developments acted as an impetus for change, interim amendments introduced retrospectively in the first tranche of reforms were but only a stopgap measure. This article focuses on the second tranche of reforms in 2013, which brought in a detailed and prescriptive framework on transfer pricing. As one awaits judicial direction on how the new legislation is to be applied, it remains to be seen whether the objectives of modernising transfer pricing rules and aligning them with international best practice could be achieved and whether, in light of the recent base erosion profit shifting developments, further changes are necessary.

  • Tax consolidation changes Add to cart

    01 Aug 2015

    The tax consolidation regime has recently undergone substantial amendment, and there are more amendments to come. This article considers the recent round of amendments, namely, changes relating to the tax cost of rights to future income and the residual tax cost-setting rule, and the interaction of the taxation of financial arrangement rules with tax consolidation. The article also discusses forthcoming changes embodied in the recommendations of the Board of Taxation contained in the Restoring Integrity to the Consolidation Regime exposure draft legislation released by Treasury on 28 April 2015. The authors conclude that, following the recent amendments, there are several issues on which different interpretations are open to taxpayers and the ATO alike.The impending introduction of further legislative changes will also keep all in the industry busy, as will the ongoingreviews into a number of recommendations of the Board of Taxation, and the MEC group rules.

  • An update on capital management issues Add to cart

    01 Aug 2015

    Any capital management strategy carries a number of taxation implications which should be carefully considered before implementation of the strategy. This article considers some current key tax issues associated with common and topical capital management strategies, including the tax treatment of returns on certain funding instruments following the Mills case, share buy-backs, including the implications of the decision in the Consolidated Media Holdings case and the status of proposed reforms, debt buy-backs, and certain debt/equity issues.

    The article discusses common capital management tax issues for general corporate taxpayers. There are specific tax issues that can arise for authorised deposit-taking institutions, that is, banks and other financial institutions, which are outside the scope of the article. The author concludes with a recommendation that tax teams ensure that time for obtaining advice around the issues (including ATO rulings where appropriate) is factored into the timetable for execution of capital management strategies.

  • Promoting smart travel through tax policy Add to cart

    01 Aug 2015

    This article discusses the need for the Australian Government to explore smart commuting policies due to the impact of using passenger motor vehicles on negative transport externalities, such as congestion, greenhouse gas emissions, health and safety, energy security and economic prosperity. The lack of tax incentives and the convenience of parking facilities provided by employers are barriers to the adoption of travel smart choices. This article explores the tax constraints that hinder smart commuting and examines how a subsidy for smart commuting can be provided through tax policy changes, especially the fringe benefits tax. In the authors’ opinion, the Australian Government should follow the example of other countries that are using taxation as a tool to promote alternative travelling initiatives, such as the transit program in the United States, the Cycle to Work Alliance in the United Kingdom, and the income tax exemption in Ireland.