The Tax Specialist

The Tax Specialist Journal cover page

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Designed for the specialist tax professional, The Tax Specialist journal is essential reading for corporate tax advisers, accountants, lawyers and academics. Featuring in-depth analysis, opinion and argument on legislative, administrative and judicial issues it is published five times per year and is available by subscription. Also known as the Red Journal.

The Tax Specialist covers the latest issues affecting your role and your business, including:

  • consolidations
  • mergers and acquisitions
  • international tax
  • GST securitisation
  • venture capital
  • legal professional privilege
  • Part IVA
  • TOFA, and more.

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Australia’s leading journal for corporate tax professionals, is now also available on iPad and Android.

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Articles from the current issue:

  • Superannuation: Do contribution caps have any meaning? Add to cart

    01 Apr 2015

    Since the introduction of compulsory employer contributions in the form of the superannuation guarantee contribution system for employees in 1992, Australia’s superannuation asset has grown significantly to almost $1.8tr with one-third of all superannuation assets held by self-managed superannuation funds. With simplification of the superannuation scheme from 1 July 2007, the Australian retirement income system has seen a dramatic change in the way retirement savings are accumulated, administered and ultimately paid. To ensure that superannuation assets are maintained for funding retirement and not used as an estate planning or wealth creation vehicle, contribution restrictions coupled with taxation measures have been deliberately imposed to limit accumulation.

  • Your Honour, he is a contractor! Add to cart

    01 Apr 2015

    Whether a worker should be categorised as an employee, a contractor or even in a “bailor/bailee” relationship is an important decision which affects different areas of tax law in Australia. The greater use of contractors/subcontractors has brought about change in the way in which work is performed, not only as a result of the effect of technological change, but also as employers seek to abrogate many employment and taxation obligations and other economic factors. It is necessary, in each case, to examine all of the terms of the contract and to determine whether the person is working in the service of another or is working on their own behalf.

    This article examines the factors which courts take into consideration when determining the employment relationship, in light of the rapidly changing nature of the workplace, the rapid growth of independent contractors in the workplace, as well as the employer’s tax obligations.

  • TR 2010/3 on UPEs and Div 7A: An unwelcome U-turn? Add to cart

    01 Apr 2015

    The utilisation of unpaid present entitlements by close-knit groups involving trusts and private corporate beneficiaries to retain working capital at the corporate tax rate was so prevalent that it became a cause for concern. In response, in 2009, the ATO took an unwelcome U-turn to regard certain unpaid present entitlements (UPEs) as loans. In the absence of judicial authority, the ATO faced a daunting task of using Div 7A of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 (Cth) to regulate UPEs against a backdrop of well-established legal and equitable principles. The result is TR 2010/3, which leaves taxpayers and advisers in an unsatisfactory state of flux, with significant administrative, commercial and legal ramifications.

  • Policy considerations for an Australian patent box regime Add to cart

    01 Apr 2015

    Australia has a problem with innovation efficiency. While the public and private sectors both dedicate significant resources to innovation inputs such as R&D spend, far less resources are committed to producing, protecting and commercialising innovation outputs. A preferential tax policy for profits resulting from commercialisation of IP generated and held in Australia could potentially assist to correct this imbalance. With the right integrity provisions and policy design, such a regime could also be consistent with Australia’s international economic obligations and commitments.

  • Resurrecting employee share schemes Add to cart

    01 Apr 2015

    Changes to the taxation treatment of employee share schemes (ESS) have been announced, first as an exposure draft of legislation, then as an amending Bill, introduced into the parliament in March 2015. The changes will affect public and private companies which issue interests to employees or directors at a discount to market value as a means of remuneration, incentivisation, retention or raising capital. The proposed changes are a direct response to adverse consequences that have followed amendments made in 2009.

    This article examines the proposed changes by considering the changes in the context of the evolution of the tax treatment of ESS in Australia since 1995. The article discusses deficiencies in the proposed changes, if they are to achieve their stated purpose, additional measures and alternative measures that should be considered, and the role that an anti-avoidance mentality has played in shaping federal tax policy in this area.

  • An evaluation of the case for a congestion tax in Australia Add to cart

    01 Apr 2015

    Traffic congestion has become a growing concern in most cities in Australia. A 2014 report by the Economic Regulation Authority (ERA)1 highlighted the need to implement a congestion charge in Perth. This article examines factors that cause congestion and alternative ways of dealing with congestion in Australia. Specifically, the article examines whether introducing a congestion tax could provide an effective means of resolving traffic congestion in Australian cities. Studies and results from other jurisdictions are examined in order to help inform the policies that Australia should adopt. It is submitted that an inquiry into congestion charges should include a wider investigation, including motor vehicle tax reform, city planning, redirection of revenues and a longer strategic plan.

    The article also recognises that congestion charging, if implemented, may have other implications for which Australian cities may not be ready.