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25 Jun 10 Preamble - Friday, 25 June 2010

A week is a long time in politics - and earlier this week, before the Government's attention became focussed on matters of leadership, Taxation Institute President, David Williams FTIA and Taxation Institute Councillor, Ken Shurgott FTIA (SBN Lawyers) joined me in Canberra to discuss priority issues with the Government.

This was yet another opportunity for sustained, targeted action by the Taxation Institute on behalf of Members with respect to issues including unpaid present entitlements. We were in Canberra for meetings with the key tax policy stakeholders in both the Government and the Opposition. These Ministerial discussions expressed our deep concerns that a significant number of families and small businesses operating through trusts will be forced to restructure at significant cost or otherwise face increased tax bills as a result of the Tax Office’s final ruling on unpaid present entitlements. We also highlighted the problem of the complexity in the area of the taxation treatment of trusts - an area in which we have long called for legislative clarification to overhaul, update and fix the 50-year-old provisions that do not reflect 21st Century operations. The final report of the Henry Tax Review recommended that ‘the current trust rules be updated and rewritten to reduce complexity and uncertainty around their application’. We will continue to discuss possible ways forward with the Government and keep members updated on progress.

If you would like to discuss any of the above in more detail, please feel free to contact me via: taxpolicy@taxinstitute.com.au.

Please see below for details of other activities this week.

Kind regards
Robert Jeremenko FTIA

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