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ATO unveils SMSF annual return changes

Sarah Kendell
08 October 2019 — 1 minute read

The ATO has released a number of new labels within its SMSF annual return forms, and will be contacting those who have already completed a return for the previous financial year who may need to amend their return.

The new questions added to the annual return form include a requirement to disclose whether an additional part of the SMSF’s audit was qualified, new sections on cryptocurrency and LRBAs, and further disclosure obligations around downsizer contributions, according to a recent update posted on the ATO website. Guidance around these new labels was originally released in June.

The office said it would be looking to “build a more complete risk profile of the SMSF population” through capturing whether both Part A and Part B of an SMSF’s audit report have been qualified, rather than just Part B. 


SMSFs will now also need to disclose if Part B of their audit has been qualified even if it was only qualified because the auditor couldn’t confirm the information provided to them, the ATO said.

The ATO had also added a section to the annual return around outstanding LRBA balances, in line with new laws around including the outstanding balance in a member’s TSB. 

SMSFs with LRBAs entered into after 1 July 2018, or those that had refinanced an LRBA after this date to acquire more assets or increase their borrowing amount, would need to disclose outstanding loan amounts in their return if the lender was a related party or the SMSF member had met a nil cashing restriction.

In a sign that the ATO were seeking to more closely monitor SMSF investment in cryptocurrency, SMSFs would now need to declare any cryptocurrency assets in a separate section of their return, rather than under the previous “other overseas assets” label.

In addition, the member section of the annual return would now include a section for “proceeds from primary residence disposal” for members to report the value of any downsizer contributions made to their SMSF and the date they were received.

In a further website update, the ATO said due to these changes, any SMSFs who had already lodged their 2019 annual return may need to amend their return.

The office confirmed they would contact any SMSFs for whom this could be the case and personally assist them in amending the return.

Editor's note: A previous version of this article stated that SMSFs who have already lodged their return would need to re-lodge as a result of these changes. The ATO has since confirmed that any previously lodged returns will need to be amended, but that the ATO will contact the affected SMSF to do this on their behalf.

ATO unveils SMSF annual return changes
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