Typically, an existing Self-Managed Superannuation Fund’s (SMSF) annual tax return is due in mid-May of the following year, if filed with a registered tax agent. However, there are several significant benefits to staying on top of your SMSF administration and (where possible) filing your return early.
An earlier tax refund and peace of mind
Filing your SMSF’s tax return early can potentially trigger an earlier tax refund, subsequently allowing you to reinvest the funds sooner. Should you be facing a tax liability, on the other hand, tax payables are not due until mid-May, even if the return is lodged early. Getting a handle on tax payable early allows for better budgeting. So why not submit your return early and give yourself peace of mind?
Take advantage of planning opportunities
Opportunities are available only to those that are ready. Once you’ve prepared your SMSF tax return, you have access to relevant and accurate data regarding your fund.
With the ever-changing contribution caps and indexed pension caps, having accurate and timely data can save you from creating an excess on these caps and will enable you to plan better for following year’s contributions.
Early detection and rectification of errors
Accidents happen. For example, it can take just one keystroke to make a significant error in internet banking, which could go unnoticed for some time. We live in the ‘golden age’ of SMSF administration. The SMSF industry offers a range of efficient cloud accounting software that allows banks to send transactions directly to the accounting system once authorised by the account holder. These systems will enable your accountant to review bank transactions on a regular basis, detect any errors and bring them to your attention for rectification. This could save you from a potential breach of regulations.
Address compliance issues early on
The constantly evolving superannuation and increasing SMSF audit and compliance requirements means what was ‘okay’ in prior years might require more caution and documentation today. For example, each time the fund changes its investment structure or makes a new investment which is not documented in the fund’s investment strategy, you are required to note your considerations in an updated investment strategy. Sometimes, trustees have done nothing wrong except to fall short on documentation. This could snowball into a bigger compliance issue if it becomes subject to an ATO audit.
Be proactive and communicate with your SMSF advisor before you consider an investment or structure.
Prepare for the ATO’s new compliance regime
From 1 July 2023, all SMSFs will be required to report on transfer balance accounts quarterly. This means that should any member start a new pension or commutation (stop or stopping part of the pension), the SMSF must report it 28 days after the quarter ends.
For assistance with your Self-Managed Super Fund, please contact the SMSF team at William Buck.