Miscellaneous 2004

Avoidance and Other Consequences of Publishing Commissioner's Interpretation Guidelines

Source: Australian Tax Forum Journal Article

Published Date: 1 Jul 2004

Tax commissioners' interpretation statements or policy statements that try to clarify obscure areas of law are generally to be welcomed for the certainty that they offer to taxpayers. However, it can be a mistake to issue such statements to clarify areas where rules can never be framed as true bright line tests.

This article examines three statements about such areas of law, one being a draft. The statements attempt, respectively, to clarify the distinction between form and substance, to illustrate the operation of general anti-avoidance rules, and to define what amounts to a sham. The author's thesis is that in such areas, which Parliament has left vague, at best taxpayers seize the opportunity to plan their way around commissioners' interpretation statements and at worst taxpayers may actively exploit them.

Sorry, this is subscriber only content.

To gain access to this material and much more - Subscribe Now.

(Note: Members can access Taxation in Australia journal articles without a Tax Knowledge Exchange subscription - please log in to access).

Already a Subscriber? Login now

Already a Subscriber? Login now


The material is copyright. Apart any fair dealing for the purpose of private study, research criticism or review, as permitted under the copyright Act, no part may be reproduced by any process without written permission from The Tax Institute.

Unless expressly stated, opinions are not that of The Tax Institute, which accepts no responsibility for the accuracy of any of the information contained within it.

The Tax Institute
(ABN 45 008 392 372 (PRV14016))


The Tax Institute is a Recognised Tax Agent Association (RTAA) under the Tax Agent Services Regulations 2009. 

Copyright Statement

All materials provided on this site are protected by copyright and are owned by or licensed to TTI.

Except as expressly permitted by TTI or the copyright owner, any person or company who uses this site must not use, reproduce, redistribute, retransmit, publish or otherwise transfer, or commercially exploit, the materials or any information, software or other content, in whole or in part, which is available through this site.


Miscellaneous 2004

Share this page