SMSF firms falling behind on annual returns
The complexities of dealing with the CGT relief and coping with other regulatory changes is slowing down the processing of SMSF annual returns, and could see accountants seeking another lodgement extension from the ATO, says an industry consultant.
Speaking to SMSF Adviser, Darren Wynen from TaxBanter and Insyt said many of the SMSF firms he’s spoken to recently are moving at a much slower pace this year in processing their clients’ SMSF annual returns.
“Certainly the professionals I’ve spoken to are behind their schedules compared to where they were at this time last year, and they’re just concerned that with the added complexity that they’re going to require an extension of time,” said Mr Wynen.
This is mainly due to the fact he said that SMSF practitioners are still getting their heads around the CGT relief, and also some of the legislative changes that were made this year.
“Practitioners obviously want to make sure that it’s all correct and there’s a number of steps that need to be done, especially for those clients who were over the $1.6 million transfer balance cap,” he explained.
“A lot of clients with TRISs are now stopping those income streams. There are just a lot of general changes that professionals are dealing with for the first time this year.”
Earlier this year, the ATO extended the due date for the lodgement of SMSF annual returns for the 2015-16 financial year, with many SMSF practitioners grappling with the superannuation changes and ATO outages.
“Traditionally, where the ATO is looking to grant an extension, we don’t necessarily know till later in the piece, but we’d certainly be hoping that the ATO will perhaps announce earlier that they’ll grant an extension of time in relation to tax agents lodging their SMSF tax returns. That would at least take some of the pressure off,” he said.
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 also has broad business and financial services reporting experience, having written for titles including Investor Daily, ifa and Accountants Daily.