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08 Apr 2021 Superannuation

Updated ATO guidance: SMSF auditor independence  

The ATO has updated its Auditor Independence guidance for approved SMSF auditors. Specifically, an update has been applied to the section Auditor Independence – Issues for firms when re-structuring in the Reciprocal auditing arrangements and referral source information area.  

The update clarifies: 

  • The ATO will not consider it an independence threat if the fees generated from one referral source is less than 20% of a firm’s total fees, where the firm is well established and mainly derives its income from providing auditing services.  

  • Despite the 20% ‘threshold’, other factors may still be relevant in evaluating the level of any threats to independence. In some cases, the ATO says a lower or greater threshold may be appropriate. 

More information can be found here 

Statistics on COVID-19 early release of superannuation 

The COVID-19 early release of superannuation program closed on 31 December 2020. You can no longer apply for early access to some of your superannuation using this program. If eligible, you may be able to withdraw some of your superannuation on other compassionate grounds. 

The ATO has published the COVID-19 Early release of superannuation report, which shows statistics about applications, from 20 April 2020 (when the program opened) to 31 December 2020 (when the program closed).  

More information can be found here. 

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