Source: Australian Tax Forum Journal Article
Published Date: 1 Mar 2023
With the release of the Review of the Tax Practitioners Board and TASA 2009 (Treasury, 2019) and the government response to the Review (Treasury, 2020), this study gathers empirical evidence on tax practitioners' perceptions of the recommendations concerning the TASA 2009 Code of Professional Conduct, investigations and related sanctions. Via a survey methodology, this study reveals that tax practitioners generally support a more dynamic Code of Professional Conduct, albeit with indicative caveats. However, where support was found for commencement of investigations, findings suggest strong reservations around emoving limitations and the time limit around investigations. Generally strong support was found for new and increased sanctions, however, there was more diluted support for the publication of sanctions, a new administrative penalty regime and for extending safe harbour protections. From a practical perspective, this research provides guidance on future tax policy and potential legislative amendments by contributing to the agenda of the Tax Practitioner Governance and Standards Forum and the Professional Standards Council. It also has direct implications for the Code of Professional Conduct and the likely acceptance of new penalties and investigation procedures by practitioners. Theoretically,the study answers a call for further research into tax practitioners' attitudes and behaviour, and adds to the limited existing empirical literature in this space. This research potentially breaks new ground in determining whether the recommendations will achieve their objectives.
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