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Taxation Law

Merthyr law are recognised specialists in the provision of taxation advice for small to medium sized enterprises, especially family managed businesses, which typically use trusts and companies.

This advice extends to the benefits of superannuation for clients approaching the 60 years + age group. The advantages of testamentary trusts, in terms of income splitting, and specialist advice in respect to special discretionary trusts is particularly relevant to these clients.

The significance of knowing and understanding the client’s business in order to ensure that specific and possibly litigious points of the relationship are dealt with within the terms of a contract or agreement at the time of negotiation should not be underestimated. The value of Merthyr Law’s expertise is evident in our ability to recognise the contingencies that clients often do not factor in and that may otherwise result in more costly restructuring or litigation in the future.

Merthyr Law is recognised by Centrelink as the largest provider of Special Disability Trusts, since the enactment of the legislation.

Merthyr Law’s expertise is in the areas of:

  • income tax;
  • capital gains tax;
  • small business concessions;
  • goods and services tax;
  • duty;
  • land tax;
  • super and discretionary trusts; and
  • payroll.

Our Taxation Team

Taxation FAQ’s

Capital gains tax in property settlements

When a property settlement is formalised by way of a financial agreement or a court order there are stamp duty exemptions applicable to the transfer of matrimonial assets. Careful consideration should be given to assets which attract capital gains tax. An asset is any property or legal or equitable right including the goodwill of a business, interest in a partnership and relates to capital gain upon disposal of assets acquired on or after 20 September 1985.

Assets exempt from capital gains tax include bank accounts, life insurance policies, superannuation funds, the home, cars, motorcycles and personal assets.

Roll-over relief upon a marriage or de facto relationship breakdown is available when an asset is transferred under a property order or a financial agreement between spouses or from a trustee or company to a spouse.

However, the party receiving such a property in a property settlement will be responsible for that liability when that party eventually disposes of the asset with it attracting capital gains tax if the person transferring the property acquires it on or after 29 September 1985 with the calculation of capital gains tax based upon the transferors cost base at the time of transfer to the transferee plus incidental costs

Stamp duty exemptions in property settlements

The Family Law Act in Section 90 exempts from stamp duty transfers and other documents executed “for the purposes of, or accordance with a property order”. This relates to orders for married couples or for de facto partners.

Transfers and other documents signed pursuant to a financial agreement are also exempt from stamp duty. It is important particularly if the matter is resolved by way of an application for consent orders or financial agreement to ensure that the orders or terms of the financial agreement are carefully prepared to ensure that the stamp duty exemption is obtained on behalf of the client.

What types of tax does Merthyr Law specialise in?

We are a full service taxation firm.

We have extensive experience in both State and Federal taxes, including income tax, GST, fringe benefits tax, capital gains tax, payroll tax, land tax and duty (including stamp duties).

What tax services does Merthyr Law offer?

We assist with innovative solutions to satisfy your tax needs.

This includes innovative structures for:

  • your businesses from the outset;
  • assistance in business and investment restructuring (obtaining applicable exemptions, exceptions and rollovers); and
  • assisting to wind down your business or selling your business with the most tax effective outcome for you; 
  • tax effective estate and business succession planning;
  • personal income tax matters; and 
  • taxation of self managed superannuation entities.

We have extensive experience in tax disputes both with State and Federal Revenue Authorities.

I have just received an audit letter from the ATO, what should I do?

Don’t ignore it!

See your accountant in the first instance.  They will be able to assist in guiding you through the process. 

If the audit process begins to get complicated and the ATO starts asking difficult questions we suggest you come and speak with us.

The OSR says I’m grouped for payroll tax, what should I do?

The payroll tax grouping provisions are all encompassing.  Once you are grouped, it is very difficult to be de-grouped.

We can assist in analysing whether you should have been grouped in the first place and whether there is any potential to have you de-grouped for the future.

Either way, it is best to see us as there are usually short timeframes in which you can respond to OSR assessments for payroll tax.

Do I have to pay duty?

If you are buying assets (a business, an interest in a trust, land or entities that are landholders and other business assets) you will usually have to pay duty.

Before entering into any acquisition transactions we recommend you discuss with us the best potential structure for duty and other tax purposes.

I am starting a business, what is the best structure?

It depends.

The best structure is the one which is tax effective, provides you with asset protection and has a low ongoing maintenance cost.

One structure suitable for one type of business in one industry may not necessarily suit businesses in other industry sectors.

Your appetite for risks and your requirement for asset protection as well as effective tax outcomes will determine the best business structure for you.

When should I see a lawyer about my tax?

You should see a lawyer about you tax when:

  • you are starting your business;
  • you are looking to restructure your business;
  • you are selling your business;
  • you are buying a business;
  • you are having a dispute with the ATO; or
  • you are looking to scale down your involvement in your business and transfer control to your successors.

Tax effective measures can be put in place in each one of the above steps to make sure nasty tax surprises don’t lurk in the shadows.

Contact Us

To make an appointment with one of our team, fill in the form below or phone us on 07 3029 1600

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