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ConTax Newsletter - May 2014

Careers Related Article: A day in the life of a Golf Pro/Hollywood lawyer… not really, but read on!

Contributed by Thalia Kalaboukas, Special Counsel, Bernie O’Sullivan Lawyers

Telling people “I’m a superannuation and estate planning lawyer” inevitably has the same effect: a sudden glazing of the eyes and a definite end to the conversation. This explains why I chose not to write this in the heading – I’m betting few would have chosen to read on. The glazed eye response is probably caused by the fact that a lot of people have no idea what “estate planning” is and, while most understand that they have accumulated superannuation benefits, not many understand what a lawyer practicing in such areas actually does. Over time I have found that by saying “I give legal advice to people planning for their retirement and wealth succession” usually results in at least a follow-up question.

Click here to read the full article.

Sample Exam Question

Contributed by Kathryn Tarr of Mutual Trust Pty Ltd 

Alice Beauchamp is an accountant and tax agent. Alice was employed by Accountants for You Pty Ltd but was unfortunately made redundant on 30 June 2012. Rather than be upset by this turn of events, Alice saw this as an opportunity to control her own destiny. Alice decided to ‘go out on her own’ and concentrate on providing advisory services to clients rather than compliance services. Alice set up her own business, Alice’s Accounting Advice, and has operated this business out of the Beauchamp Family Trust since 1 July 2012... 

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Member Profile

Name: Tracy Williams
Employer: Bendzulla Actuarial
Position: Chief Executive Officer

Short bio: During my HSC I studied accounting and it just clicked with me. I went on to complete my Bachelor of Commerce at the University of Tasmania in 1994 and was fortunate enough to be offered a graduate position at KPMG, Hobart. During this time I undertook further study to become a Chartered Accountant. In 1997 I moved to Sydney to fulfil my ambition to further develop my professional career in taxation and gained roles in the Corporate Tax departments of both Grant Thornton and Arthur Andersen. 

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Feature article: Accounting for UPEs

Contributed by Arthur Athanasiou, CTA, Thomsons Lawyers

The presentation of unpaid present entitlements in financial statements has been overtaken by Div 7A. But is there a proper form of disclosure? 

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What else can you do with your law degree?

A legal career will be hard to come by as a glut of law graduates struggle to fit into fewer graduate places. So what else you can do with your law degree?

Enrolment numbers provided by universities around Australia show that the number of students enrolled in law is on the rise. The bad news is that, according to the Australian Government’s Job Outlook, job openings in the legal profession will be low over the next few years. The number of graduate places has also shrunk correspondingly, according Graduate Careers Australia.

Click here to read the full article.

Recent Tax Cases of Interest

  1. Blank v FCT [2014] FCA 87
  2. Australian Building Systems Pty Ltd v FCT [2014] FCA 116
  3. Tax Laws Amendment (2014 Measures No.1) Bill
  4. Project DO IT : Disclose offshore income today 

Click here to read more.