You have to worry about the complexity of super changes, when the Australian Taxation Office releases a suite of Law Companion Rulings (LCRs), trying to explain many of the July 2017 changes, and several of these LCR documents exceed 100 pages a pop.
The LCRs have been written with advisers and accountants in mind, but anyone with a detailed interest in the super changes can have a go at reading the documents. And this guidance from the ATO is definitely welcome, especially for the overwhelmed advising and accounting industry that has been dumped with trying to interpret and implement the new super rules (especially the nearly unworkable $1.6 million transfer balance cap).
For your convenience, we list the released LCRs (and links) at the end of the article, but we also suggest you read the relevant SuperGuide article on a particular topic, to assist you in understanding the ATO documents.
Locating the ATO Guidance notes…
Fortunately, the ATO has also published Guidance notes explaining the super changes in a less complex way than the Law Companion Rulings. The Guidance notes contain similar information to what you will find in the relevant SuperGuide articles (as a starting point, see SuperGuide article Latest superannuation rules: 2018/2019 guide or Latest superannuation rules: 2018/2019 guide).
At the time of writing, the ATO has published Guidance notes on the following topics:
- Change to non-concessional contributions cap
- Change to concessional contributions cap
- Total superannuation balance
- Changes to personal super contributions deduction
- Changes to tax offset for spouse contributions
- Changes to concessional contributions – constitutionally protected and unfunded defined benefit fund
- New transfer balance cap for retirement phase accounts
- Transfer balance account – credits and debits
- Excess transfer balance
- Transitional CGT relief
- New transfer balance cap – death benefit income streams
- New transfer balance cap – child death benefit recipients
- New transfer balance cap – defined benefits
- Changes to the taxation of defined benefit income streams
- New transfer balance cap – payment splits
- Removal of election to treat super income stream benefits as super lump sum
You can find these Guidance notes, and any additional Guidance notes published, by clicking on this link.
The SuperGuide articles covering the equivalent topics (that are listed above as Guidance notes) are set out below:
- Cut in annual non-concessional (after-tax) contributions cap to $100,000
- Cut to concessional contributions caps: the back story
- Total Superannuation Balance: 7 reasons why your TSB matters
- Super contributions: Bring-forward rule and your Total Superannuation Balance
- Employees can now make tax-deductible super contributions
- Contributing to your spouse’s super account (4 Q&As)
- Learn to love LISTO: low income earners get their super tax refunded
- Retirement phase: A super guide to the $1.6 million transfer balance cap
- Defined benefit pensions and the $1.6 million transfer balance cap
- CGT relief and the $1.6 million transfer balance cap, and TRIPs
Introducing ATO’s Law Companion Rulings…
The ATO has released the following Law Compliance Rulings to assist advisers and accountants (and other interested Australians) understand many of the complex super rules:
- LCR 2016/8: Superannuation reform: Transfer balance cap and transition to retirement: transitional CGT relief for superannuation funds
- LCR 2016/9: Superannuation reform: Transfer balance cap
- LCR 2016/10: Superannuation reform: Capped defined benefit income streams – non-commutable, lifetime pensions and lifetime annuities
- LCR 2016/11: Superannuation reform: Concessional contributions – defined benefit interests and constitutionally protected funds
- LCR 2016/12: Superannuation reform: Total superannuation balance
- LCR 2017/1: Superannuation reform: Capped defined benefit income streams – pensions or annuities paid from non-commutable, life expectancy or market-linked products
- LCR 2017/3: Superannuation reform: Superannuation death benefits and the transfer balance cap
- PCG 2017/5: Superannuation reform: Commutation requests made before 1 July 2017 to avoid exceeding the $1.6 million transfer balance cap
- PCG 2017/6 Superannuation reform: Commutation of a death benefit income stream before 1 July 2017
For more information on the latest super changes…
For a summary of the main super rules, including the July 2017 super changes (and links to more detailed articles), see the SuperGuide article Latest superannuation rules: 2018/2019 guide.