How we interpret and apply the law
Interpreting and applying the law is central to our administration of the tax and superannuation systems. We offer a range of advice services to obtain certainty and clarify how the law works.
We work with our partners in the tax and super systems to ensure the law, administrative systems and information products are consistent with the policy intent and compliance costs are minimised.
If law is clear
We have a duty to apply the law. If the law is clear but gives rise to unintended consequences, anomalies, or significant compliance costs inconsistent with the policy intent, we advise government – usually through Treasury.
We do this regardless of who the existing law favours.
If law is open to interpretation
If the law is open to interpretation, our approach is to adopt the interpretation consistent with the policy intent.
Where more than one of the available interpretations achieves the policy intent, we will generally apply the interpretation more favourable to you.
We ensure new legislation is implemented efficiently and effectively by consulting with you, your tax advisers, professional associations, industry bodies and Treasury.
In some cases the law is clear but gives rise to unintended consequences. Or the wording of legislation may be open to interpretation. Find out how we interpret and implement the law.