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23rd National Convention

Published on 12 Mar 2008 | Took place at Adelaide Convention Centre, National

The 23rd National Convention offered a flexible program of over 25 technical sessions. These sessions were offered in three streams.

In support of the 2008 Convention, the countries leading presenters and the tax professions luminaries attended the event, ensuring that the technical program and subsequent presentations were of the highest quality.

Stream 1 - SME Issues

This stream focussed on topics that affect practitioners with SME clients and included practical sessions on Agribusiness, GST, structures, cloning and many more.

Stream 2 - Corporate Issues

This stream focussed on a number of issues of interest to practitioners with large business clients including international, Division 250, tax risk management and many more.

Stream 3 - Hot Topics

This stream focussed on new and emerging areas which are of significance to many practitioners in the ever changing tax environment. Topics included litigation and audit strategies, payroll tax harmonisation, consolidation and more.

Get a 20% discount when you buy all the items from this event.

Individual sessions

Tax & climate change – New horizons for tax practitioners

Author(s):  David RUSSELL

This paper covers:

  • alternative proposed measures to limit climate change
  • tradable quotas - technical issues including quota allocation and duration, capital or revenue, grandfathering, Integrity issues and use of carbon taxes as a transitional measure for a tradable quotas scheme
  • carbon emissions taxes including models, implementation of an internationally harmonised domestic emissions tax - technical issues and international co-operation
  • revenue recycling issues
  • emissions taxes v. tradable quotas - an alternative view.
Materials from this session:

Tax aspects of private equity transactions

Author(s):  Peter J MCKNOULTY

This paper focusses on the target / vendors for:

  • tax structuring issues - demergers, consolidations, scrip-for-scrip transactions
  • recent examples of structuring private equity deals
  • extracting value for the vendors, including share buy-backs
  • earn out arrangements.
Materials from this session:

Agribusiness - Topical tax issues: It doesn’t rain but it pours…

Author(s):  Peter SIEBELS

This paper considers the tax issues in the agribusiness industry in light of drought and the environment, as well as the ATO's views on MIS agribusiness schemes. Case studies examine the following:

  • current issues in MIS - is it a business/applying for a product ruling?
  • taxation of water rights
  • tax issues for exporters of produce
  • FMDs - the new scheme
  • structuring inter generational change
  • CGT - property and primary production improvements
  • role of super in holding assets
  • brave new world - environmental tax issues and opportunities.
Materials from this session:

International acts - Current developments in tax treaties

Author(s):  Andrew MILLS

This paper covers:

  • pitching your Big Top - developments on permanent establishments
  • the Take at the Gate - the new debt collection and access powers and extensions to exchange of information
  • I've never seen that before! - treaty interpretation in light of GE Capital Finance Pty Ltd
  • what's happening in the other tent? - OECD developments - attribution of profits, non-discrimination, arbitration and others
  • clown cars - special purpose vehicles and some overseas developments
  • recent ATO views regarding copyright assignments.
Materials from this session:

Tax litigation and dispute development: Where are we now and where are we heading?

Author(s):  Sue WILLIAMSON

This paper covers:

  • pre-litigation strategies and obligations
  • legal professional privilege - strategies and obligations
  • the ATO - model litigant?
  • declaratory proceedings and other administrative law actions
  • part IVC proceedings
  • discovery
  • FOI
  • burden of proof
  • negotiation and settlement.
Materials from this session:

Trust matters

Author(s):  Bruce QUIGLEY

This paper covers:

  • trust cloning
  • Cajkusic v Commissioner of Taxation
  • other issues.
Materials from this session:

Current issues in accounting for income tax

Author(s):  Ronen VEXLER

This paper covers:

  • a practical examination of tax effect accounting issues under AASB 112
  • key issues to be considered in preparing for implementation of the revised IAS 12
  • examination of the complex technical and commercial aspects of accounting for uncertain tax positions.
Materials from this session:

Outbound investment by private clients – What structure to use?

Author(s):  Mathew CHAMBERLAIN,  Anna KLIMCZAK

This paper covers:

  • what foreign entity to use for the investment, ie foreign company, branch, partnership etc
  • profit and cash repatriation issues and opportunities
  • funding the investment
  • impact of tax treaties, including allocation of taxing rights and withholding taxes etc
  • treatment of related party transactions
  • issues and opportunities arising from the interplay between Australian tax law and the tax law of the local jurisdiction
  • examples of specific issues affecting investments in certain jurisdictions.
Materials from this session:

Choosing a business structure

Author(s):  Andrew Noolan

This paper covers some of the issues to consider when choosing a business structure, be it a company, a unit trust, a discretionary trust or a partnership. The focus is on highlighting structuring elements you want to include and those you want to exclude from a structure, including:

  • dividend access shares and how they can be used following the recent changes to the small business CGT concessions
  • unit trusts and their use as superannuation investment vehicles
  • discretionary trusts and the problems of choosing an appointor.
Materials from this session:

The impact of Mcneil on market instruments

Author(s):  Ian STANLEY

This paper covers the:

  • High Court decision in McNeil
  • ATO's post McNeil position
  • Treasury response - a complete answer for investors and issuers, or a work in progress?
Materials from this session:

National harmonisation of payroll tax – Big change or minimal change?

Author(s):  David KL RAPHAEL

This paper discusses how harmonisation of payroll is now happening with possible flow on effects in the other states including:

  • what impact the harmonisation project will have for each of the States
  • the changes to grouping rules and discretion to exclude Cross border businesses
  • developments in the area of what is covered by taxable wages, employee share schemes and options and trust distributions
  • developments in the traditional area of contractors v employees.
Materials from this session:

Business buy sell agreements

Author(s):  Paul HOCKRIDGE

This paper covers:

  • an overview of buy/sells
  • CGT treatment of life and trauma proceeds
  • who should hold insurance?
  • CGT on non-arm's length transfers
  • insurance trusts
  • using superannuation funds
  • deductibility of premiums
  • GST
  • stamp duty
  • debt forgiveness.
Materials from this session:

Division 250 – Impact on contracting with tax-exempt bodies

Author(s):  Don GREEN

This paper discusses the impact of the new Division 250 on:

  • businesses contracting with Government, charities, hospitals and other tax exempt bodies
  • leasing property (including commercial buildings) to tax exempt bodies
  • providing finance to businesses holding such contracts with tax exempt bodies.
Materials from this session:

Tax and religion

Author(s):  Ash CHOTAI

This paper covers:

  • prohibitions against usury
  • division 7A and FBT issues
  • debt / equity problems
  • church bonds
  • fiduciary duties
  • Islamic banking
  • GST issues for religious institutions
  • beneficial trusts
  • issues for not for profit religious organisations
  • political lobbying
  • charities and donations.
Materials from this session:

Current issues in the taxation of trusts

Author(s):  Mark L ROBERTSON

This paper covers:

  • present entitlement under unit trusts
  • losses and the rule in Upton v Browne
  • payments to trustees
  • recent cases including Cajkusic, Pearson, CPT Custodian, Raftland, and Di Lorenzo.
Materials from this session:

Governance and tax risk management – current best practices

Author(s):  Miquel P. TIMMERS

This paper covers:

  • the Commissioner's correspondences to Boards and Chairman
  • corporate governance and TRM (Who are the real stakeholders?)
  • TRM as a component of a holistic tax management structure
  • an example of "how to" of TRM
  • an "internal manager's" v. an "external adviser's" view of risk management
  • restricted access to risk management materials.
Materials from this session:

Tax consolidation for the generalist – What you really need to know

Author(s):  Sam HOWARD

This paper covers:

  • update on emerging issues
  • December ‘04 and '05 announcements
  • May ‘07 announcements
  • due diligence issues and trends
  • exit ACA calculations
  • single entity rule
  • entry and exit history.
Materials from this session:

Coming to or leaving Australia – Is there a tax problem?

Author(s):  Megan FIELD

With individuals travelling between countries more and more in their career, it is essential for advisers to be aware of the range of tax issues that affect people either leaving Australia to work overseas or coming here either temporarily or permanently. This paper considers some of the main domestic tax factors that need to be addressed including:-

  • Capital Gains Tax and how it applies to:
    • temporary residents
    • taxpayers leaving and coming to Australia permanently.
  • Superannuation and the tax implication of:
    • departing temporary residents
    • bringing super to Australia.
Materials from this session:

Tax indemnities on sale of entities

Author(s):  Teresa DYSON

This paper covers:

  • identifying the tax risks
  • the hidden risks
  • time limitations - the amendment period
  • consolidation
  • tax sharing agreements
  • running the objection/appeal process
  • access to information
  • who will be in charge of the tax returns?
Materials from this session:

Liability management in a professional tax practice

Author(s):  Brian PATTERSON

This paper covers:

  • sources of possible liability
  • how to protect yourself
  • the National Professional Standards scheme
  • the Accounting Professional and Ethical Standards Board
  • the new Tax Agent rules
  • some "real life" case studies.
Materials from this session:

Cloning or splitting discretionary trusts

Author(s):  Ken SCHURGOTT

This paper tackles the difficult issues thrown up when using trust splitting or cloning techniques for succession planning or wealth preservation. Case studies demonstrate the following:

  • technical problems with CGT events A1, E1 and E2
  • how to bring into existence a new trust
  • shifting value to the new trust
  • creditors following assets to the new trust
  • the incidence of stamp duty
  • keeping an eye on Part IVA.
Materials from this session:

Comparisons & contrasts: State land rich duty and Federal non-resident CGT rules

Author(s):  Harry LAKIS

This paper covers:

  • comparing the CGT and stamp duty regimes
  • taxable Australian real property (CGT) v real property (stamp duty)
  • how indirect interests are treated
  • non portfolio interest test (CGT) v relevant interest (stamp duty)
  • principal asset test (CGT) v ratio of land interests to total assets test (stamp duty)
  • valuations and allocation of value to various assets
  • planning issues and relevant stamp duty cases.
Materials from this session:

Selling out – Tax issues for the baby boomer making a sea change/tree change

Author(s):  Brenton ELLERY

The success of the baby boomer generation comes with some tax headaches - with many wanting to move towards a more relaxed lifestyle it will be important that advisers are aware of the myriad of tax issues that will need to be addressed to ensure that the sea change is a happy one and not too taxed. Case studies in this paper examine:

  • ways of selling out of the business:
    • using small business CGT concessions for best advantage
    • sell the business or the shares?
    • which concession works best for you?
    • liquidating the family company
    • dealing with businesses owned by trusts
  • intergenerational change - should I set up a testamentary trust in my will?
  • superannuation - tax free money for life?
Materials from this session:

Insolvency issues

Author(s):  Craig BOWIE

This paper covers:

  • ATO priority?
  • risks for directors and officers
  • potential defences
  • PAYG recovery provisions
  • liquidator's clearances.
Materials from this session:

Justice Hill Memorial Lecture: Income and capital distinction

Author(s):  Tony PAGONE QC

This paper was presented at both the 23 National Convention and the Capital versus revenue: the sun never sets event held in Victoria on 16 April 2008.

The distinction between income and capital has been the pivotal issue on which most tax issues turn since the Commonwealth imposed income tax. When capital gains tax was introduced it was anticipated that the distinction between income and capital would become less significant. To the contrary, the distinction is one gaining more and more attention. In this paper Justice Pagone focuses on recent developments in the income/capital debate including:

  • the reasons why the distinction remains so central to the Australian tax system
  • the impact of more recent judicial decisions
  • if the judgement has been given, the first decision relating to the debt/equity provisions.
Materials from this session:

A plethora of property issues to ponder

Author(s):  Lachlan R WOLFERS

Many property developers are still getting it wrong. From small developers building a couple of units, to larger complexes with many apartments, there are numerous GST issues to be addressed to ensure that any ATO audit activity is not a problem. With Australia's ageing population, an increase in the number of retirement villages has also created some GST traps. The key issues covered in this paper are:

  • retirement villages
  • margin scheme overview including a look at rulings and cases
  • developments hard to sell - let's rent it out. A look at the change of purpose rules
  • calculation of the ITC clawback on change of purpose.
Materials from this session: