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Penalty unit hike passed by both houses

Bill passed
Miranda Brownlee
12 May 2017 — 1 minute read

A bill passed by both houses of parliament to increase penalty units for Commonwealth penalties from $180 to $210 will see SMSFs pay higher penalties for contraventions.

Yesterday, the government passed Crimes Amendment (penalty unit) Bill 2017 which will increase the Commonwealth penalty unit from $180 to $210, with effect from 1 July 2017.

It will also delay the first automatic CPI adjustment of the penalty unit until 1 July 2020, with indexation to occur every three years following that date.


DBA Lawyers director Daniel Butler told SMSF Adviser contraventions of many super provisions usually amount to 60 penalty units, and the penalty for these contraventions will mean an increase from the current $10,800 to $12,600 from 1 July 2017.

“[SMSF trustees] have got to take stock because it again reinforces that if you’ve got a corporate trustee, you only have to pay one level of penalty,” Mr Butler said.

Minister for Justice Michael Keenan also weighed in, saying strong penalties are a “central tenet of an effective justice system”.

“This bill will strengthen courts’ ability to impose appropriate punishments on serious offenders, including those involved in organised crime, white-collar crime, fraud and cybercrime,” Mr Keenan said.

“This measure is estimated to result in increased revenue to the Commonwealth of $80 million over the next four years, which will support the governments efforts to repair the budget and benefit everyday Australians.”

Miranda Brownlee

Miranda Brownlee


Miranda Brownlee is the deputy editor of SMSF Adviser, which is the leading source of news, strategy and educational content for professionals working in the SMSF sector.

Since joining the team in 2014, Miranda has been responsible for breaking some of the biggest superannuation stories in Australia, and has reported extensively on technical strategy and legislative updates. Miranda has also directed SMSF Adviser's print publication for several years. 

Miranda also has broad business and financial services reporting experience, having written for titles including Investor Daily, ifa and Accountants Daily.

You can email Miranda on: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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