Welcome to a New Financial Year – We trust that 2019/2020 will be very successful for your business!
Revenue NSW Unclaimed Money Search
Revenue NSW (previously Office of State Revenue) allow you to search unclaimed money and to make a claim for that money. The website to do so can be found here. We suggest that everyone undertake a search, you never know what you may find.
Introduction of Director Penalty Notices for GST
The government has progressed legislation through parliament which will extend the penalties and enforcement measures applying in relation to superannuation guarantee charge (SGC), PAYG withholding tax and GST, including imprisonment.
The government is getting particularly tough on compliance with the superannuation guarantee system, as wayward employers may now be punished with potentially drastic penalties for not abiding by their obligations.
If the Bill is passed, directors of both public and private companies will also become personally liable for their outstanding GST debts, upon non-compliance occurring. The new legislation contains a raft of measures aimed at reducing phoenixing activity and gives the Commissioner new powers to make directors personally liable for a company's unpaid GST and to collect GST on the basis of estimates where an entity fails to lodge a GST return.
The amendments highlight the need for company directors to ensure their current and future assets (eg inheritances) are adequately protected if the ATO makes a claim against them personally. This is particularly important where a rogue co-director engages in tax subterfuge thereby unwittingly ensnaring the rest of the board with civil liability for the same.
Definition of Large Proprietary Companies Changes
The definition of a "large proprietary company" changed from 1 July 2019. The new definition of a large proprietary company is that it is a company which satisfies at least two of the following requirements:
- The Consolidated Revenue for the financial year of the company and any entities it controls is $50 million or more (previously $25 million)
- The value of the Consolidated Gross Assets at the end of the financial year of the company and any entities it controls is $25 million or more (previously $12.5 million)
- The company and any entities it controls have 100 or more employees at the end of the financial year (previously 50 employees)
If your company is a large proprietary company, the company must prepare and lodge a Financial Report and a Directors' Report for each financial year. The Financial Accounts must be audited unless Australian Security Investment Commission (ASIC) has granted release from the requirement to have an audit prepared.
If your company was previously defined as a "large proprietary company" and no longer complies with the definition you do not have to prepare and lodge the Financial Reports and Directors' Report for 2019/2020 onwards but you may continue to prepare these Reports and have an audit prepared if the Directors so resolve.
If you have any question on any aspect of Directors' responsibilities relative to your company being deemed to be a "large proprietary company" please do not hesitate to contact us.
Developing Leadership "People Skills"
The high cost of replacing staff is well known, as is the evidence that the majority of people leave their jobs, not because of the type of work that they are required to do, but because of poor relationships with their managers.
A manager might ensure the processes, procedures and systems are done correctly, but have little idea about the right approach to take in leading people. Skill and genuineness in dealing with people is the key to affective leadership.
Whilst it is vital to gain the respect of your team, it is not necessary to try to be popular. The key points are:
- involve team members in determining shared behaviours to be agreed and followed by all and endorse support and practice those which you agree;
- attitude influences behaviour, so ensure your attitudes and behaviours reflect those you wish others to adopt – be genuine and set the example;
- everyone is different, so adjust your leadership style with individuals as they develop in confidence and commitment;
- practice good leadership continually to foster the development of strong relationships and mutual trust.
Culture is the Hidden Success for Business
To be successful, a business needs culture – the "icing on the cake". Culture affects every aspect of the business, shareholders, directors, management, team members, customers, suppliers and the general public.
Culture is the hidden success and takes into account:
Culture is one of the main attributes of business that will hold the business together, and will give the business that extra strength and perseverance to battle through and survive harsher economic circumstances.
- The attitude of team members of "going the extra distance" to satisfy customers' requirements – the attitude of customers who might be prepared to overlook late delivery because of their overall satisfaction of dealing with your business.
- Culture relates to the image that your business creates in the marketplace.
- Are staff pleasant and presentable?
- Is the telephone answered in a professional manner?
- Are emails produced in a professional manner?
- Is your website up-to-date?
- Are products/services delivered promptly in accordance with the sales contract?
- Is quality a priority in the business?
Cuts to Deeming Rates to Benefit Pensioners
The government has announced a cut to deeming rates, which will result in about 1 million Australians will benefit from a $600m boost across the next four years.
Under the new rates, the lower deeming rate will decrease from 1.75% to 1% for financial investments up to $51,800 for single pensioners and $86,200 for pensioner couples. The upper deeming rate will be cut from 3.25% to 3% for balances over these amounts.
Under the new rates, age pensioners whose income is assessed using deeming will receive up to $40.50 a fortnight for couples ($1053 extra a year), and $31 a fortnight for singles ($804 extra a year).
Minister for Families and Social Services Senator Anne Ruston said the changes would benefit about 630,000 age pensioners and almost 350,000 people receiving other payments.
The extra money will start flowing through into bank accounts from the end of September, in line with the regular indexation of the pension and will be backdated to 1 July 2019.
Changes to the deeming rate will also benefit people receiving other income-tested payments including the Disability Support Pension, Carer Payment and income support allowances and supplements such as the Parenting Payment and Newstart.