With the Federal election to be held on Saturday 2 July 2016, both Houses of Parliament were dissolved on 9 May 2016 following a very short sitting period which commenced on 18 April 2016.

Commonwealth revenue measures introduced into Parliament or registered as legislative instruments or regulations since our previous TaxTalk Monthly publication include the following:

Tax and Superannuation Laws Amendment (Medicare Levy and Medicare Levy Surcharge) Bill 2016, introduced into the House of Representatives on 2 May 2016 and subsequently enacted on 4 May 2016, increased, with effect for the for the 2015-16 income year, the Medicare levy and Medicare levy surcharge low-income thresholds and "phase-in" limits for individuals and seniors in line with movements in the consumer price index (CPI) (refer to PwC’s Analysis of the 2016-17 Federal Budget for further details).

Change Of The Reporting Period For Third Party Reports On Real Property Transfers Determination 2016 which changes the reporting period for reports required to be given by states and territories to the Commissioner under item 3 of the table in section 396-55 of Schedule 1 to the Taxation Administration Act 1953 (third party reports on real property transfers) from financial year to quarterly periods.

Classes ofElectronic Payment System Transactions Exempt In The 2017/18 Year From Providing Third Party Reports Determination 2016 which provides a temporary exemption for the 2017-18 financial year to administrators of payment systems from having to include specified classes of transactions in reports prepared and lodged in relation to item 9 of the table in section 396-55 (third party reports on electronic payments).

Classes ofElectronic Payment System Transactions Exempt From Providing Third Party Reports Determination 2016 which provides an exemption from 1 July 2017 to administrators of payment systems from having to include specified classes of transactions in reports prepared and lodged in relation to item 9 of the table in section 396-55 (third party reports on electronic payments).

Classes of Transactions for which Government Related Entities are Exemptfrom Providing Third Party Reports Determination 2016, which provides an exemption from 1 July 2017 to government related entities from having to include specified

classes of transactions in reports prepared and lodged in relation to items 1 and 2 of the table in section 396-55 (third party reports on Government grants and supplies made to Government entities).

GST-free Supply (National Disability Insurance Scheme Supports) Amendment Determination 2016 (No. 1) extends, for a further 12 months, the GST-free Supply (National Disability Insurance Scheme Supports) Determination 2013 which specifies which kinds of supplies to a participant of the National Disability Insurance Scheme are GST-free in accordance with section 38-38(d) of A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax) Act 1999.

Tax and Superannuation Laws Amendment (2016 Measures No. 2) Regulation 2016, which:

  • amends the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Regulations 1994 (SIS Regulation) to allow trustees of eligible rollover funds (ERFs) to transfer member account balances to active accounts in other superannuation funds without a member’s consent and includes an exemption for this type of transfer to the significant event disclosure requirements in the Corporations Regulations 2001
  • makes minor technical corrections and consequential amendments to the SIS Regulation
  • ensures that Australian Defence Force Cover is listed as an exempt public sector scheme, and
  • amends the Income Tax (1936 Act) Regulation 2015 to exempt from income tax the remuneration of Australian Defence Force personnel serving on Operations Accordion, Highroad, Manitou, Okra and Palate II.

Tax Laws Amendment (Foreign Resident Capital Gains Withholding Payments) Regulation 2016 adds Chi-X Australia Pty Ltd (Chi-X) to the list of approved stock exchanges, so that transactions conducted on Chi-X fall within the on-market transactions exception for the new foreign resident capital gains withholding tax regime which commences from 1 July 2016. The Regulation also temporarily exempts conveyancers who perform certain services in relation to the making of payments under the new withholding regime from the Tax Agent Services Act 2009.

By way of round-up, the following main tax and superannuation related Bills that were before Parliament have now lapsed:

  • Customs and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2016
  • Superannuation Legislation Amendment (Choice ofFund) Bill 2016 which proposed to amend the Superannuation Guarantee (Administration) Act 1992 to ensure employees under new workplace determinations or enterprise agreements that are made from 1 July 2016 have an opportunity to separately choose their superannuation fund
  • Superannuation Legislation Amendment (Transparency Measures) Bill 2016 which proposed to increase the quality of information available to superannuation fund members and employers in relation to choice product dashboards and portfolio holdings disclosure
  • Superannuation Legislation Amendment (Trustee Governance) Bill 2015
  • Tax and Superannuation Laws Amendment (2015 Measures No 3) Bill 2015 which included the Government’s proposal to reduce the rate of the research and development offset by 1.5 percentage points and abolish the seafarer tax offset
  • Tax and Superannuation Laws Amendment (2016 Measures No 2) Bill 2016 which, among other things, included the proposal to establish statutory remedial power for the Commissioner of Taxation

In addition, tax return season for the 2016 income year has been officially launched with the Commissioner of Taxation registering a number of legislative instruments on 19 May 2016 that require the lodgment of various returns to the Commissioner including those relating to the lodgment of income tax returns for the 2016 income year.