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  • Introduction



    This information may not apply to the current year. Check the content carefully to ensure it is applicable to your circumstances.

    End of attention

    These instructions will help you complete the Partnership tax return 2015. They are not a guide to income tax law. You may need to refer to other publications.

    When we say ‘you’ or ‘your business’ in these instructions, we mean either you as the partnership that conducts a business or you as the registered tax agent or partner responsible for completing the tax return.

    These instructions contain abbreviations for names or technical terms. Each term is spelt out in full the first time it is used and there is a list of abbreviations.

    What’s new?

    Small business concessions: changes to simpler depreciation rules

    New laws have passed that allow small businesses to claim an immediate deduction for depreciating assets they acquire, and start to use or install ready for use, provided the asset costs less than $20,000. The general small business pool will apply to depreciating assets costing $20,000 or more. This measure applies to assets acquired from 7.30pm (AEST) on 12 May 2015 until 30 June 2017.

    The current ‘lock out’ laws have also been suspended. Small business entities that have previously elected out of the simplified depreciation rules are no longer subject to the ‘lock-out’ rule (which prevented small businesses from re-entering the simplified depreciation regime for five years if they had opted out). These entities may re-elect to use the simplified depreciation rules, now with the higher $20,000 threshold.

    See also:

    Accelerated depreciation for primary producers

    New laws have passed that allow primary producers to:

    • immediately deduct the cost of fencing and water facilities
    • depreciate over three years the cost of fodder storage assets.

    Related party debt

    On 14 December 2013, the then Assistant Treasurer announced that the 'Bad debts: ensuring a consistent treatment in related financing arrangements' measure will not be proceeding.

    The government also announced its intention to provide protection for taxpayers who under-assessed their taxable income on the basis of announced changes that will no longer proceed. This protection became law on 30 June 2014.

    This measure, announced by the former government on 8 May 2012, proposed to deny a tax deduction to a lender who writes off a bad debt owed to it by a related party.

    Protection for taxpayers

    Parliament has enacted legislation to provide protection for taxpayers who under-assessed their tax position on the basis of announced changes that will no longer proceed. Taxpayers who paid additional tax by following announced changes that will no longer proceed will be entitled to a refund.

    See also:

    • Protection for anticipation of certain discontinued announcements 

    General information

    An individual who was not in a partnership carrying on a business does not need to lodge a partnership tax return where the only income derived jointly (or in common) with another person was:

    • rent from a jointly owned investment property
    • interest from a jointly held account
    • dividends from jointly held shares.

    In these instances, each individual shows their share of the income and expenses at the appropriate items on their own individual tax return.

    Last modified: 12 Feb 2019QC 44345