• What private rulings can cover

    A private ruling may deal with anything involved in the application of a relevant provision of the law, including issues relating to liability, administration and ultimate conclusions of fact (such as residency status).

    Terms we use in relation to private rulings

    • Scheme is a general term we use to refer to any agreement, arrangement, understanding, plan, proposal, action, course of action or course of conduct, promise or undertaking, whether express or implied and whether or not enforceable, or intended to be enforceable, by legal proceedings.
    • Entity is a general term we use for those who can apply for and receive a private ruling about their tax affairs. An entity is a person or other type of entity, such as a company, a partnership, a trust or a superannuation fund that may be a party to a scheme or an arrangement.
    • A legal personal representative is:
      • an executor or administrator of the estate of a person who has died
      • a trustee of the estate of a person who is under a legal disability
      • a person who holds a general power of attorney that was granted by another person.
       
    • Commissioner refers to the head of the ATO or officers who are delegated the Commissioner's powers or functions.

    General anti-avoidance rules

    Part IVA of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 is a general anti-avoidance rule that can apply in certain circumstances. If Part IVA applies to an arrangement, the tax benefits you obtained from the arrangement can be cancelled – for example, we might disallow a deduction that would otherwise be allowable.

    When you apply for a private ruling about an arrangement, you can also ask us to consider whether Part IVA applies to the arrangement.

    If you ask us to provide a ruling about the application of Part IVA, you may also ask us to refer the Part IVA matter for consideration by the General Anti-Avoidance Rules (GAAR) Panel. You may request a referral to the panel either with your ruling application, or after you have lodged your application.

    See also:


    If:

    Then:

    • you ask us to provide a ruling about the application of Part IVA to an arrangement, and
    • you also ask us to refer the ruling application for consideration by the GAAR panel, and
    • our preliminary view is that Part IVA may apply to the arrangement 

     

    We will refer the application for consideration by the GAAR panel, unless your application raises substantially identical issues on facts essentially comparable with a matter previously referred to the panel.

    • you ask us to provide a ruling about the application of Part IVA, and
    • you also ask us to refer the ruling application for consideration by the GAAR panel, and
    • our preliminary view is that Part IVA does not apply to the arrangement 

     

    We will not refer the application for consideration by the GAAR panel unless further examination of your requests leads us to conclude Part IVA may apply to the arrangement.

    • you don't ask us to make a ruling about the application of Part IVA 

     

    We will not refer a private ruling application for consideration by the GAAR Panel unless a ruling is sought on the application of Part IVA.

    Last modified: 15 Sep 2015QC 43592