Season of Change

Welcome to the Winter edition of the Powerline. As we change seasons to what may be a cool Winter, we also see a number of changes upon us in the form of regulation, reform and legislation.

As highlighted in the last Powerline, 1 July 2016 sees the removal of the ‘accountants’ exemption’ under Regulation 7.1.29 of Corporations Act. The Government has removed the accountants’ exemption as part of the FOFA reforms, allowing accountants to provide advice on the establishment and operation of self-managed superannuation funds. From 1 July 2016, accountants wanting to provide any financial advice (including advice relating to SMSFs) will need to hold an AFSL or operate under an AFSL.

To continue to deliver the high level of quality financial advice to our clients, Power Tynan has taken the leap into the licensed environment as an Authorised Representative of SMSF Advice. A great deal of time and training has been spent on becoming licensed in the changing financial advice environment. We as advisers look forward to the challenges that change presents, but more importantly look forward to working with you, our valued clients.

1 July 2016 also sees the introduction of mandatory compliance for all employers with SuperStream. Under SuperStream, employers must make super contributions electronically. The contribution data is sent electronically in a message format to the fund, and the contribution payment is sent electronically through the banking system. From 1 July 2016, all employers must send contributions electronically to all super funds, including Self Managed Super Funds (on behalf of their employees).

Employers have options for meeting SuperStream, including:

  • Upgrading your payroll software

  • Using an outsourced payroll function or other service provider

  • Using a commercial clearing house such as the free Small Business Superannuation Clearing House (19 or fewer employees)

  • Your default fund may also have its own electronic channel that can be used and will be able to provide you with details about how to comply with the SuperStream using their preferred facilities.

The final reform to highlight is not so much of an immediate change, but rather a shift into a new environment that you may or may not even be aware of. Standard Business Reporting (SBR) is a standard approach to online or digital record-keeping that was introduced by the Government in 2010 to simplify business reporting obligations. SBR is built into business/accounting software and incorporates standard terms that are used in government legislation and reporting to create consistency. SBR collects the right information, for the right Government report, saving you time. SBR is not something that is going to be switched on overnight, but rather a gradual improvement and introduction that will continue to evolve. The introduction of SuperStream is an example of SBR.

Due to the changing environment, and to provide further details and discussion around some of the changes highlighted in this issue of Powerline, we will be running a series of seminars in the new financial year in both Toowoomba and Stanthorpe.