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A Conflict of Duty - A Federal Approach to the Tax Treatment of Goodwill and Other Intangibles

Published on 01 Jan 03 by "AUSTRALIAN TAX FORUM" JOURNAL ARTICLE

This paper focuses on goodwill as a form of intangible property and on one approach to taxing transfers of such property under state and federal taxation law in Australia. It is in the nature of such things that detailed technical analysis of provisions impacting on business must be placed in context. In the complex areas of capital gains tax (CGT), goods and services tax (GST) and stamp duty in Australia the facts are critical to every situation. It is possible to identify trends and outcomes and to generalise a little in order to evaluate the outcomes of tax policy for fairly large groups of taxpayers and parts of the economy.

This article is principally an analysis of the CGT, GST and stamp duty provisions that impact mainly small to medium sized enterprises in the event of a sale of business. The tensions created by the application of the detailed provisions provide interesting ground for analysis of the outcomes from the point of view of federal tax policy.

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Author Photo - Michael WALPOLE
Michael WALPOLE

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