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  • Guide to capital gains tax 2013

    About this guide

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The Guide to capital gains tax 2013 explains how capital gains tax (CGT) works and will help you calculate your net capital gain or net capital loss for 2012–13 so you can meet your CGT obligations. There are links to worksheets in this guide to help you do this.

    This guide is not available in print or as a downloadable PDF (Portable Document Format) document.

    Who should use this guide?

    An individual, company, trust or superannuation fund can use this guide to work out their CGT obligations.

    Individuals may prefer to use the shorter, simpler Personal investors guide to capital gains tax 2013 (NAT 4152) if, during 2012–13, they only:

    • sold some shares
    • sold some units in a managed fund, or
    • received a distribution of a capital gain from a managed fund.

    A company, trust or superannuation fund may be required to complete and lodge a Capital gains tax (CGT) schedule 2013 (NAT 3423) (CGT schedule) as explained in Part C.

    If you have a small business, you should get the publication Guide to capital gains tax concessions for small business 2013 (NAT 8384).

    This guide does not deal fully with the CGT position of:

    • an individual or entity whose gains or losses are included as part of its income under other provisions of the tax law, for example from carrying on a business of share trading (see Carrying on a business of share trading)
    • an individual or entity that is not an Australian resident for tax purposes
    • a company that is the head company of a consolidated group. The rules that apply to members of a consolidated group modify the application of the CGT rules. For more information about the consolidation rules go to Consolidation.

    Publications and services

    To find out how to obtain a publication referred to in this guide, see Publications and rulings. For information about our other services, see More information.

    Introduction

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    This guide will help you work out whether any of the assets you own (or may own in the future), and any events that happen, are subject to CGT. Where they are, it tells you how to work out your capital gain or capital loss. It also covers what records you need to keep.

    Attention

    New terms

    We may use some terms that are new to you. These words are explained in Definitions. Generally they are also explained in more detail in the section where they first appear.

    While we have sometimes used the word ‘bought’ rather than ‘acquired’, you may have acquired an asset subject to CGT (a CGT asset) without paying for it (for example, as a gift or through an inheritance). Similarly, we refer to ‘selling’ such an asset when you may have disposed of it in some other way (for example, by giving it away or transferring it to someone else). Whether by sale or by any other means, all of these disposals are CGT events.

    End of attention

    Your tax return NAT 10628

    Whether you are an individual or an entity (company, trust or fund), if you have a capital gain or capital loss for 2012–13, this guide will help you to complete the capital gains item on your tax return.

    Worksheets

    You may wish to use the two CGT worksheets provided to help you keep track of your records and make sure you pay no more CGT than necessary.

    There is:

    You can print out these forms and complete them as you work through the guide.

    CGT schedule

    If you are a company, trust or fund with total capital gains or capital losses of more than $10,000 this income year, you must complete a Capital gains tax (CGT) schedule 2013 (CGT schedule). Partnerships and individuals who lodge a paper tax return are not required to lodge a schedule.

    The CGT schedule is explained in detail in part C.

    What’s new?

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    In 2012, the ATO undertook a review of business income tax returns in an effort to obtain a better balance between the community's cost of compliance and the organisation's information needs. The review explored the company, trust and partnership income tax returns and some associated schedules to identify opportunities to remove or refine the information collected.

    The review has resulted in a redesign of the Capital gains tax schedule this year.

    Changes and proposed changes to the law

    A number of proposed changes to the tax law relating to CGT have not yet been enacted. For information to help you decide what you should do if you need to lodge your income tax return and a particular change that might affect you has not become law yet, see The ATO's approach to dealing with retrospective law changes.

    For information on a range of new laws relating to CGT, including the progress of proposed law changes, see New legislation. Some of the recent changes and proposed changes to CGT law that may be relevant to your tax affairs are described below.

    Capital gains tax – exemption for incentives related to renewable resources

    As part of the 2011 Budget, the Government announced it will exempt from capital gains tax (CGT) any gains or losses arising from a right to a financial incentive, granted to taxpayers under an Australian Government (Commonwealth, State or Territory) scheme, that encourages them to:

    • acquire renewable resource assets (for instance, photovoltaic solar cells or solar hot water systems), or
    • agree to preserve a part of Australia's environmental amenity (for instance, for refraining from removing remnant vegetation).

    This measure will turn off the income tax recoupment rules and also provide appropriate depreciation consequences for taxpayers that realise such rights.

    This measure will apply to income tax assessments for the 2007–08 income year and later income years.

    At the time of publishing these instructions these changes had not become law.

    For more information see Capital gains tax – exemption for incentives related to renewable resources.

    End of find out more

    No capital gains tax for properties in natural disaster land swap programs

    The Assistant Treasurer has announced any property owners with investment properties involved in the Lockyer Valley Regional Council's land swap program will be eligible for CGT relief.

    This measure will:

    • allow taxpayers to choose a CGT exemption if they are affected by a natural disaster and participate in an Australian Government agency program that provides replacement assets, and
    • apply an exemption to rights arising under a cash grant program for taxpayers affected by a natural disaster (whether the program is run by an Australian Government agency or another entity).

    Taxpayers will also be able to attain pre-CGT status on their replacement asset.

    Taxpayers whose main residence is accidentally destroyed will be able to access the main residence exemption to the extent they would have been able to had their main residence not been destroyed. The exemption will apply where they sell the land or any rebuilt dwelling without establishing the new dwelling (and its adjacent land) as their main residence.

    This measure applies generally to CGT events happening on or after 1 July 2011.

    At the time of publishing these instructions these changes had not become law.

    For more information see No capital gains tax for properties in natural disaster land swap programs.

    End of find out more

    Tax relief for investors in instalment warrants

    On 10 March 2010, the Government announced it would amend the tax law to treat the beneficiary of an instalment warrant trust as the taxpayer for income tax purposes for the underlying asset in the trust. The changes will apply to treat:

    • the investor in an instalment warrant over an exchange traded security in a company, trust or stapled security as the owner of the listed security for income tax purposes, and
    • a superannuation trustee who enters into a limited recourse borrowing arrangement for the purpose of purchasing an asset, as permitted under former subsection 67(4A) of the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993 (the SISA), now sections 67A and 67B SISA, as the owner of the asset for income tax purposes.

    However, in the 2011 Budget, the Government further announced it will extend the look-through treatment beyond single exchange traded securities to include instalment warrants and receipts over:

    • direct and indirect interests in listed securities
    • unlisted securities in widely held entities
    • bundles of these assets.

    At the time of publishing these instructions these changes had not become law.

    For more information see Tax relief for investors in instalment warrants.

    End of find out more

    Look-through treatment for earnout arrangements

    On 12 May 2010, the Government announced it would amend the tax law to treat additional payments made under a 'standard' earnout arrangement as related to the original asset for the seller and adding to the cost base for the buyer. It will treat payments made under a 'reverse' earnout arrangement as effectively a repayment of part of the capital proceeds.

    This change will apply to earnout arrangements entered into on or after royal assent of the amending legislation. Optional transitional relief will be provided from 12 May 2010 or, in certain limited situations, back to 17 October 2007, which was the date of release of a relevant ATO draft ruling.

    At the time of publishing these instructions this change had not become law.

    For more information see Look-through treatment for earnout arrangements.

    End of find out more

    Amendments to scrip for scrip rollover and the small business concessions

    The Government announced in the 2011 Budget that it will ensure the scrip for scrip rollover integrity provisions that apply to individuals and companies also apply to trusts, superannuation funds and life insurance companies. The Government will also amend the small business tax concessions so that trusts will not be able to avoid being treated as connected entities for the purpose of testing eligibility for the concessions on the basis that the trusts do not own assets for their own benefit. These measures will have effect for capital gains tax events happening after 7.30pm (AEST) on 10 May 2011.

    At the time of publishing these instructions this change had not become law.

    For more information see Amendments to scrip for scrip rollover, the small business concessions and beneficial interests 

    End of find out more

    Improving the taxation of trust income

    Tax Laws Amendment (2011 Measures No. 5) Act 2011 which received Royal Assent on 29 June 2011 implemented changes that enable the streaming of franked dividends and capital gains for tax purposes, as well as introducing targeted anti-avoidance rules. These changes apply for the 2010–11 and later income years.

    Broadly, the legislation ensures that, where permitted by the trust deed, the trust's capital gains and franked distributions can be effectively streamed to beneficiaries for tax purposes by making those beneficiaries 'specifically entitled' to those amounts. Beneficiaries specifically entitled to franked distributions will, subject to existing integrity rules, also enjoy the benefit of any attached franking credits. The legislation also introduced two specific anti-avoidance rules to address the inappropriate use of exempt entities to 'shelter' the taxable income of a trust.

    Trust distributions provides further detail of how these changes operate.

    For more information see Improving the taxation of trust income.

    End of find out more

    Shipping reform

    On 9 September 2011, the Minister for Infrastructure and Transport announced the Government’s shipping policy reform, Stronger Shipping for a Stronger Economy. The policy has been enacted into law and provides, among other things, that CGT event K7 is disregarded to the extent that you are using, or at any time have used an eligible vessel to produce income that is exempt through the holding of a shipping exempt income certificate issued under the Shipping Reform (Tax Incentives) Act 2012.

    The shipping reform changes commenced on 1 July 2012.

    Capital gains tax and loss relief to facilitate superannuation reforms

    Superannuation Laws Amendment (Capital Gains Tax Relief and Other Efficiency Measures) Act 2012, which received Royal Assent on 28 November 2012, amended the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 to provide temporary taxation relief to eligible superannuation funds in the form of loss relief and capital gains tax roll-over relief. It ensures that income tax considerations do not prevent mergers of super funds or transfers of members' benefits and relevant assets, in transitioning to Stronger Super and MySuper.

    The tax relief will be available to complying super funds (excluding self-managed super funds) or approved deposits funds that merge with a complying super fund with five or more members. The tax relief is available for mergers that occur on or after 1 October 2011 and before 2 July 2017.

    Improving the integrity of the foreign resident capital gains tax regime

    As part of the 2013 Budget the Government announced on 14 May 2013 that it would make a number of amendments to improve Australia's foreign resident CGT regime. Two technical amendments to the regime will apply to CGT events with effect from 7.30pm (AEST) 14 May 2013 and a new withholding system to support the regime will apply from 1 July 2016.

    Amendments will be made to the principal asset test to ensure that indirect Australian real property interests are taxable if disposed of by a foreign resident, and will:

    • remove the ability to use transactions between members of the same consolidated group to create and duplicate assets
    • value mining, quarrying or prospecting information and goodwill, together with the mining rights to which they relate.

    At the time of publishing these instructions this change had not become law.

    Note also that the proposed removal of the 50% discount on capital gains earned after 8 May 2012 by non-residents on taxable Australian property, which was announced as part of the 2012 Budget, had not yet become law at the time of publishing.

    Clarification of the tax treatment of native title benefits

    As part of the 2013 Budget the Government announced on 14 May 2013 that it would remove the uncertainty regarding the CGT treatment of native title rights. This measure will apply to CGT events happening on or after 1 July 2008, and will clarify that there are no CGT implications resulting from the transfer of native title rights (or the right to a native title benefit) to an Indigenous holding entity or Indigenous person, or from the creation of a trust that is an Indigenous holding entity over such rights. This measure will also clarify that capital gains or losses made from surrendering or cancelling such rights are disregarded.

    At the time of publishing these instructions this change had not become law.

    Part A – About capital gains tax

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Do you need to read this part of the guide?

    To find out, answer the following questions. If you answer No to all questions, you don’t need to read part A. Go to part B.

    Have you applied an exemption or rollover?

    If yes then see Exemptions and rollovers.

    Do you need information about the three methods of calculating a capital gain?

    If yes then see How to work out your capital gain or capital loss.

    Have you received a distribution of a capital gain from a managed fund or other unit trust in 2012–13?

    If yes then see Trust distributions.

    Have you sold shares or units in a unit trust in 2012–13?

    If yes then see Investments in shares and units.

    Did you sell real estate or your home (main residence) in 2012–13?

    If yes then see Real estate and main residence.

    Do you need help completing the capital gains item on your individual tax return?

    If yes then see the relevant sections in part A, then work through part B.

    Do you need help completing the capital gains item on your entity’s tax return?

    If yes then see the relevant sections in part A, then work through part C.

    Does capital gains tax apply to you?

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    This section provides general background information about CGT and whether and how it applies to you.

    Attention

    New terms

    We may use some terms that are new to you. These words are explained in Definitions. Generally, they are also explained in detail in the section where they first appear.

    End of attention

    What is capital gains tax and what rate of tax do you pay?

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    CGT is the tax that you pay on any capital gain you include on your annual income tax return. It is not a separate tax, merely a component of your income tax. You are taxed on your net capital gain at your marginal tax rate.

    Your net capital gain is:

    • your total capital gains for the year
    minus
    • your total capital losses for the year and any unapplied net capital losses from earlier income years
    minus
    • any CGT discount and small business CGT concessions to which you are entitled.

    If your total capital losses for the income year are more than your total capital gains, the difference is your net capital loss for the year. You can carry it forward to later income years to be deducted from future capital gains. (You cannot deduct capital losses or a net capital loss from your income). There is no time limit on how long you can carry forward a net capital loss. You apply your net capital losses in the order that you make them.

    There are special rules for capital losses made on collectables. You cannot make a capital loss on a personal use asset.

    If you are completing a tax return for an individual and want more information on how to apply your capital losses, see steps 5 and 6 in part B of this guide. For more information for companies, trusts and funds or for completing the CGT summary worksheet, see step 2 in part C of this guide.

    Capital gain or capital loss

    You make a capital gain or capital loss if a CGT event happens. You can also make a capital gain if a managed fund or other trust distributes a capital gain to you.

    For most CGT events, your capital gain is the difference between your capital proceeds and the cost base of your CGT asset. For example, if you sell an asset for more than you paid for it, the difference is your capital gain. You make a capital loss if your reduced cost base of your CGT asset is greater than the capital proceeds.

    Generally, you can disregard any capital gain or capital loss you make on an asset if you acquired it before 20 September 1985 (pre-CGT). For details of some other exemptions, see Exemptions and rollovers.

    There are special rules that apply when working out gains and losses from depreciating assets. A depreciating asset is a tangible asset (other than land or trading stock) that has a limited effective life and can reasonably be expected to decline in value over the time it is used. Certain intangible assets are also depreciating assets.

    If you use a depreciating asset for a taxable purpose (for example, in a business) any gain you make on it is treated as ordinary income and any loss as a deduction. It is only when a depreciating asset has been used for a non-taxable purpose (for example, used privately) that you can make a capital gain or capital loss on it. For details on the CGT treatment of depreciating assets, see CGT and depreciating assets.

    To work out whether you have to pay tax on your capital gains, you need to know:

    • whether a CGT event has happened
    • the time of the CGT event
    • what assets are subject to CGT
    • how to calculate the capital gain or capital loss (how to determine your capital proceeds, cost base and reduced cost base; how to apply capital losses and the methods available to calculate a capital gain)
    • whether there is any exemption or rollover that allows you to reduce or disregard the capital gain or capital loss
    • whether the CGT discount applies
    • whether you are entitled to any of the small business CGT concessions.

    What is a capital gains tax event?

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    CGT events are the different types of transactions or events that may result in a capital gain or capital loss. Many CGT events involve a CGT asset; some relate directly to capital receipts (capital proceeds).

    You need to know which type of CGT event applies in your situation because it affects how you calculate your capital gain or capital loss and when you include it in your net capital gain or net capital loss.

    The range of CGT events is wide. Some happen often and affect many people while others are rare and affect only a few people. There is a summary of the various types of CGT events at appendix 1.

    The most common CGT event happens if you dispose of a CGT asset to someone else, for example, if you sell it or give it away, including to a relative.

    Attention

    If you are registered for goods and services tax (GST), or required to be registered for GST, a GST liability may also arise when you dispose of a business asset.

    End of attention

    A CGT event also happens when:

    • an asset you own is lost or destroyed (the destruction may be voluntary or involuntary)
    • shares you own are cancelled, surrendered or redeemed
    • you enter into an agreement not to work in a particular industry for a set period of time
    • a trustee makes a non-assessable payment to you from a managed fund or other unit trusts
    • a company makes a payment (not a dividend) to you as a shareholder
    • a liquidator or administrator declares that shares or financial instruments you own are worthless
    • you receive an amount from a local council for disruption to your business assets by roadworks
    • you stop being an Australian resident
    • you enter into a conservation covenant
    • you dispose of a depreciating asset that you used for private purposes.

    Subdividing land does not result in a CGT event if you retain ownership of the subdivided blocks. Therefore, you do not make a capital gain or a capital loss at the time of the subdivision.

    Australian residents make a capital gain or capital loss if a CGT event happens to any of their assets anywhere in the world. As a general rule, foreign residents make a capital gain or capital loss only if a CGT event happens to a CGT asset that is taxable Australian property.

    Order in which CGT events apply

    If more than one CGT event can happen, use the one that is most specific to your situation.

    Time of the CGT event

    The timing of a CGT event is important because it determines in which income year you report your capital gain or capital loss.

    If you dispose of a CGT asset to someone else, the CGT event happens when you enter into the contract for disposal. If there is no contract, the CGT event generally happens when you stop being the asset’s owner.

    Example 1: Contract

    In June 2013, Sue enters into a contract to sell land. The contract is settled in October 2013.

    Sue makes the capital gain in the 2012–13 year (the income year she enters into the contract), not the 2013–14 year (the income year settlement takes place).

    End of example

    If a CGT asset you own is lost or destroyed, the CGT event happens when you first receive compensation for the loss or destruction. If you do not receive any compensation, the CGT event happens when the loss is discovered or the destruction occurred.

    Example 2: Insurance policy

    Laurie owned a rental property that was destroyed by fire in June 2012. He received a payment under an insurance policy in October 2012. The CGT event happened in October 2012.

    End of example

    CGT events relating to shares and units, and the times of the events, are dealt with in Investments in shares and units.

    What is a capital gains tax asset?

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Many CGT assets are easily recognisable, for example, land, shares in a company, and units in a unit trust. Other CGT assets are not so well understood, for example, contractual rights, options, foreign currency and goodwill. All assets are subject to the CGT rules unless they are specifically excluded.

    CGT assets fall into one of three categories:

    • collectables
    • personal use assets
    • other assets.
    Collectables

    Collectables include the following items that you use or keep mainly for the personal use or enjoyment of yourself or your associates:

    • paintings, sculptures, drawings, engravings or photographs, reproductions of these items or property of a similar description or use
    • jewellery
    • antiques
    • coins or medallions
    • rare folios, manuscripts or books
    • postage stamps or first day covers.

    A collectable is also:

    • an interest in any of the items listed above
    • a debt that arises from any of those items
    • an option or right to acquire any of those items.

    You can only use capital losses from collectables to reduce capital gains (including future capital gains) from collectables. However, you disregard any capital gain or capital loss you make from a collectable if any of the following apply:

    • you acquired the collectable for $500 or less
    • you acquired an interest in the collectable for $500 or less before 16 December 1995
    • you acquired an interest in the collectable when it had a market value of $500 or less.

    If you dispose of a number of collectables individually that you would usually dispose of as a set, you are exempt from paying CGT only if you acquired the set for $500 or less. This does not apply to an individual collectable you acquired before 16 December 1995, which is exempt from CGT if you acquired it for less than $500, irrespective of whether or not it would usually be disposed of as part of a set.

    Personal use assets

    A personal use asset is:

    • a CGT asset, other than a collectable, that you use or keep mainly for the personal use or enjoyment of yourself or your associates
    • an option or a right to acquire a personal use asset
    • a debt resulting from a CGT event involving a CGT asset kept mainly for your personal use and enjoyment
    • a debt resulting from you doing something other than gaining or producing your assessable income or carrying on a business.

    Personal use assets may include such items as boats, furniture, electrical goods and household items. Land and buildings are not personal use assets. Any capital loss you make from a personal use asset is disregarded.

    If a CGT event happened to a personal use asset, you disregard any capital gain you make if you acquired the asset for $10,000 or less. If you disposed of a number of personal use assets individually that would usually be sold as a set, you get the exemption only if you acquired the set for $10,000 or less.

    Other assets

    Assets that are not collectables or personal use assets include:

    • land
    • shares in a company
    • rights and options
    • leases
    • units in a unit trust
    • goodwill
    • licences
    • convertible notes
    • your home (see Exemptions)
    • contractual rights
    • foreign currency
    • any major capital improvement made to certain land or pre-CGT assets.
    Partnerships

    It is the individual partners who make a capital gain or capital loss from a CGT event, not the partnership itself. For CGT purposes, each partner owns a proportion of each CGT asset. Each partner calculates a capital gain or capital loss on their share of each asset.

    Tenants in common

    Individuals who own an asset as tenants in common may hold unequal interests in the asset. Each tenant in common makes a capital gain or capital loss from a CGT event in line with their interest in the asset. For example, a couple could own a rental property as tenants in common with one having a 20% interest and the other having an 80% interest. The capital gain or capital loss made when the rental property they dispose of (or another CGT event happens) is split between the individuals according to their legal interest in the property.

    Joint tenants

    For CGT purposes, individuals who own an asset as joint tenants are each treated as if they own an equal interest in the asset as a tenant in common. Each joint tenant makes a capital gain or capital loss from a CGT event in line with their interest in the asset. For example, a couple owning a rental property as joint tenants split the capital gain or capital loss equally between them.

    When a joint tenant dies, their interest in the asset is taken to have been acquired in equal shares by the surviving joint tenants on the date of death.

    Separate assets

    For CGT purposes, there are exceptions to the rule that what is attached to the land is part of the land. In some circumstances, a building or structure is considered to be a CGT asset separate from the land.

    Improvements to an asset (including land) acquired before 20 September 1985 may also be treated as a separate CGT asset.

    Buildings, structures and other capital improvements to land you acquired on or after 20 September 1985

    A building, structure or other capital improvement on land that you acquired on or after 20 September 1985 is a separate CGT asset, not part of the land, if a balancing adjustment provision applies to it. For example, a timber mill building is subject to a balancing adjustment if it is sold or destroyed, so it is treated as an asset separate from the land it is on.

    Buildings and structures on land acquired before 20 September 1985

    A building or structure on land that you acquired before 20 September 1985 is a separate asset if:

    • you entered into a contract for the construction of the building or structure on or after that date, or
    • there was no contract for its construction, and construction began on or after that date.
    Other capital improvements to pre-CGT assets

    If you make a capital improvement to a CGT asset you acquired before 20 September 1985, this improvement is treated as a separate asset and is subject to CGT if, at the time a CGT event happens to the original asset, the cost base of the capital improvement is:

    • more than the improvement threshold for the year in which the event happens (see table below), and
    • more than 5% of the amount of money and property you receive from the event.

    If there is more than one capital improvement and they are related, they are treated as one separate CGT asset if the total of their cost bases is more than the threshold.

    The improvement threshold is adjusted to take account of inflation. The thresholds for 1985–86 to 2012–13 are shown in table 1.

    Table 1: Improvement thresholds for 1985–86 to 2012–13

    Income year Threshold
    ($)
    Income year Threshold
    ($)

    1985–86

    50,000

    1999–2000

    91,072

    1986–87

    53,950

    2000–01

    92,802

    1987–88

    58,859

    2001–02

    97,721

    1988–89

    63,450

    2002–03

    101,239

    1989–90

    68,018

    2003–04

    104,377

    1990–91

    73,459

    2004–05

    106,882

    1991–92

    78,160

    2005–06

    109,447

    1992–93

    80,036

    2006–07

    112,512

    1993–94

    80,756

    2007–08

    116,337

    1994–95

    82,290

    2008–09

    119,594

    1995–96

    84,347

    2009–10

    124,258

    1996–97

    88,227

    2010–11

    126,619

    1997–98

    89,992

    2011–12

    130,418

    1998–99

    89,992

    2012–13

    134,200

     

    Example 3: Adjacent land

    On 1 April 1984, Dani bought a block of land. On 1 June 2013, she bought an adjacent block. Dani amalgamated the titles to the two blocks into one title.

    The second block is treated as a separate CGT asset distinct from the first block. Since the second block was acquired on or after 20 September 1985 it is subject to the CGT provisions. Therefore, Dani can make a capital gain or loss from the second block when the whole area of land is sold.

    End of example

    What are capital proceeds?

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Whatever you receive as a result of a CGT event is referred to as your ‘capital proceeds’. For most CGT events, your capital proceeds are an amount of money or the value of any property you:

    • receive, or
    • are entitled to receive.

    If you receive (or are entitled to receive) foreign currency, you work out the capital proceeds by converting it to Australian currency at the time of the relevant CGT event.

    You reduce your capital proceeds from a CGT event if:

    • you are not likely to receive some or all of the proceeds
    • the non-receipt of some or all of the proceeds is not due to anything you have done or failed to do, and
    • you took all reasonable steps to get payment.

    Provided you are not entitled to a tax deduction for the amount you repaid, your capital proceeds are also reduced by:

    • any part of the proceeds that you repay, or
    • any compensation you pay that can reasonably be regarded as a repayment of the proceeds.

    If you are registered for GST and you receive payment when you dispose of a CGT asset, any GST payable is not part of the capital proceeds.

    Market value substitution rule

    In some cases, if you receive nothing in exchange for a CGT asset (for example, if you give it away as a gift), you are taken to have received the market value of the asset at the time of the CGT event. You may also be taken to have received the market value if:

    • your capital proceeds are more or less than the market value of the CGT asset, and
    • you and the purchaser were not dealing with each other at arm’s length in connection with the event.

    This is known as the market value substitution rule for capital proceeds.

    You are said to be dealing at arm’s length with someone if each party acts independently and neither party exercises influence or control over the other in connection with the transaction. The law looks not only at the relationship between the parties but also at the quality of the bargaining between them.

    Example 4: Gifting an asset

    On 7 May 2007, Martha and Stephen bought a block of land.

    In November 2012, they complete a transfer form to have the block transferred to their adult son, Paul, as a gift.

    Because they received nothing for it, Martha and Stephen are taken to have received the market value of the land at the time it was transferred to Paul.

    End of example

    For more information see Transferring real estate to family or friends.

    There are special rules for calculating the proceeds from a depreciating asset. For more information, see CGT and depreciating assets.

    The market value substitution rule for capital proceeds is subject to a number of exceptions. For example, the substitution rule for capital proceeds does not apply to the following examples of CGT event C2 (about cancellation, surrender and similar endings):

    • the expiry of a CGT asset that the taxpayer owns
    • the cancellation of a statutory licence held by the taxpayer.

    It also does not apply where CGT event C2 happens for interests held in companies and unit trusts that have at least 300 members or unit holders and do not have concentrated ownership.

    If the taxation of financial arrangements (TOFA) rules apply to you, there are special rules for calculating proceeds from a CGT asset, where you start or cease to have a financial arrangement as consideration for providing that CGT asset. For more information, see Guide to the taxation of financial arrangements (TOFA) rules.

    What is the cost base?

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    End of attention

    The cost base of a CGT asset is generally the cost of the asset when you bought it. However, it also includes certain other costs associated with acquiring, holding and disposing of the asset.

    For most CGT events, you need the cost base of the CGT asset to work out whether or not you have made a capital gain. If you may have made a capital loss, you need the reduced cost base of the CGT asset for your calculation. The columns labelled ‘Capital gain’ and ‘Capital loss’ in the tables at appendix 1 indicate whether the cost base and reduced cost base of an asset are relevant for a CGT event.

    If they are not relevant, the same columns in the tables explain how to work out your capital gain or loss. For example, if you enter into an agreement not to work in a particular industry for a set period of time, CGT event D1 specifies that you calculate your capital gain or capital loss by comparing the capital proceeds with the incidental costs.

    Cost base is not relevant when working out a capital gain from a depreciating asset.

    Further information

    There are special rules for calculating the cost of a depreciating asset. For details, see CGT and depreciating assets and the Guide to depreciating assets 2013 (NAT 1996).

    End of further information
    Elements of the cost base

    The cost base of a CGT asset is made up of five elements:

    1. money or property given for the asset
    2. incidental costs of acquiring the CGT asset or that relate to the CGT event
    3. costs of owning the asset
    4. capital costs to increase or preserve the value of your asset or to install or move it
    5. capital costs of preserving or defending your ownership of or rights to your asset.

    You need to work out the amount for each element, then add them together to work out the cost base of your CGT asset.

    An amount paid in a foreign currency that is included in an element of the cost base is converted to Australian currency at the time of the relevant transaction or event.

    If you are registered for GST, you reduce each element of the cost base of your asset by any related GST net input tax credits. If you are not registered for GST, you do not make any adjustment as the GST is included in the cost base.

    First element: money or property given for the asset

    The money paid (or required to be paid) for the asset and the market value of property given (or required to be given) to acquire the asset are included in the first element.

    Second element: incidental costs of acquiring the CGT asset or that relate to the CGT event

    There are 10 incidental costs you may have incurred in acquiring the asset or for the CGT event that happens to it, including its disposal. They are:

    1. remuneration for the services of a surveyor, valuer, auctioneer, accountant, broker, agent, consultant or legal adviser (you can only include the cost of advice concerning the operation of the tax law as an incidental cost if the advice was provided by a recognised tax adviser and you incurred the cost after 30 June 1989)

    2. costs of transfer

    3. stamp duty or other similar duty

    4. costs of advertising or marketing (but not entertainment) to find a seller or buyer

    5. costs relating to the making of any valuation or apportionment to determine your capital gain or capital loss 

    6. search fees relating to an asset (such as fees to check land titles and similar fees, but not travel costs to find an asset suitable for purchase)

    7. the cost of a conveyancing kit (or a similar cost)

    8. borrowing expenses (such as loan application fees and mortgage discharge fees)

    9. expenditure that

    • is incurred by the head company of a consolidated group to an entity that is not a member of the group, and
    • reasonably relates to a CGT asset held by the head company, and
    • is incurred because of a transaction that is between members of the group.

    10. expenditure (also known as termination or exit or similar fees) that is incurred as a direct result of your ownership of a CGT asset ending.

    You do not include costs if you:

    • have claimed a tax deduction for them in any year, or
    • omitted to claim a deduction but can still claim it because the period for amending the relevant income tax assessment has not expired.

    Third element: costs of owning the asset

    The costs of owning an asset include rates, land taxes, repairs and insurance premiums. Non-deductible interest on borrowings to finance a loan used to acquire a CGT asset and on loans used to finance capital expenditure you incur to increase an asset’s value are also third element costs.

    You do not include such costs if you acquired the asset before 21 August 1991. Nor do you include them if you:

    • have claimed a tax deduction for them in any income year, or
    • omitted to claim a deduction but can still claim it because the period for amending the relevant income tax assessment has not expired.

    You cannot include them at all in the cost base of collectables or personal use assets.

    You cannot index these costs or use them to work out a capital loss. See Indexation of the cost base.

    Fourth element: capital costs to increase or preserve the value of your asset or to install or move it

    The fourth element is capital costs you incurred for the purpose or the expected effect of increasing or preserving the asset’s value, for example, costs incurred in applying (successfully or unsuccessfully) for zoning changes. It also includes capital costs you incurred that relate to installing or moving an asset. However, it does not include capital expenditure incurred for goodwill, which may be deductible as a business-related cost. For details, see the Guide to depreciating assets 2013.

    Fifth element: capital costs of preserving or defending your ownership of or rights to your asset

    Capital expenses you incur to preserve or defend your ownership of, or rights to, the asset come under this element, for example, you paid a call on shares.

    Assets acquired after 13 May 1997

    If you acquired a CGT asset after 13 May 1997, the cost base of the asset excludes:

    • any expenditure in the first, fourth or fifth element for which you have claimed a tax deduction in any income year, or have omitted to claim but can still claim as a deduction because the period for amending the relevant income tax assessment has not expired
    • heritage conservation expenditure and Landcare and water facilities expenditure incurred after 12 November 1998 that give rise to a tax offset.

    Special rules apply for land and buildings. See Cost base adjustments for capital works deductions.

    Reversal of deduction: effect on cost base

    In some cases, a deduction you have claimed on a CGT asset can be partly or wholly ‘reversed’. This means that part or all of the deduction may be included in your assessable income in the income year the CGT event happens. In this case, you increase the cost base of the CGT asset by the amount you have to include in your assessable income.

    Indexation of the cost base

    If a CGT event happened to a CGT asset you acquired before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and owned for at least 12 months, you can use either the indexation method or the discount method to calculate your capital gain.

    If you use the indexation method, some of the cost base expenditure you incurred up to this time may be indexed to account for inflation up to the September 1999 quarter. Only expenditure incurred before this time may be indexed because changes to the law mean indexation was frozen at that date. See How to work out your capital gain or capital loss for more information on the indexation and discount methods.

    What is the reduced cost base?

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    End of attention

    When a CGT event happens to a CGT asset and you haven’t made a capital gain, you need the asset’s reduced cost base to work out whether you have made a capital loss. Remember, you can use a capital loss to reduce a capital gain only, you cannot use it to reduce other income.

    Elements of the reduced cost base

    The reduced cost base of a CGT asset has the same five elements as the cost base, except for the third element:

    1. money or property given for the asset
    2. incidental costs of acquiring the CGT asset or that relate to the CGT event
    3. balancing adjustment amount, that is, any amount that is assessable because of a balancing adjustment for the asset or that would be assessable if certain balancing adjustment relief were not available
    4. capital costs to increase or preserve the value of your asset or to install or move it
    5. capital costs of preserving or defending your title or rights to your asset.

    These elements are not indexed.

    You need to work out the amount for each element then add the amounts together to find out your reduced cost base for the relevant CGT asset.

    If you are registered for GST, you reduce each element of the reduced cost base of the asset by the amount of any GST net input tax credits for that element. If you are not registered for GST, you do not make any adjustment and the GST paid is included in the reduced cost base.

    The reduced cost base does not include any costs you have incurred for which you have claimed a tax deduction or have omitted to claim, but can still claim, a deduction because the period for amending the relevant income tax assessment has not expired, for example, capital works deductions for capital expenditure.

    Example 5: Capital works deduction: effect on reduced cost base

    Danuta acquired a new income-producing asset on 28 September 2005 for $100,000. She sold it for $90,000 in November 2012. During the period she owned it, she claimed capital works deductions of $7,500. Her capital loss is worked out as follows:

    Cost base

    $100,000

    less capital works deductions

    $7,500

    Reduced cost base

    $92,500

    less capital proceeds

    $90,000

    Capital loss

    $2,500

     

    End of example

    Modifications to the cost base and reduced cost base

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    End of attention

    In some cases, the general rules for calculating the cost base and reduced cost base have to be modified. For example, you substitute the market value for the first element of the cost base and reduced cost base if:

    • you did not incur expenditure to acquire the asset
    • some or all of the expenditure you incurred cannot be valued
    • you did not deal at arm’s length with the previous owner in acquiring the asset.

    This is known as the market value substitution rule for cost base and reduced cost base.

    There are exceptions to the market value substitution rule. One exception is where shares in a company, or units in a unit trust, are issued or allotted to you but you did not pay anything for them.

    You do not include expenditure you subsequently recoup (such as an insurance pay-out you receive or an amount paid for by someone else) in the cost base and reduced cost of a CGT asset except to the extent the recouped amount is included in your assessable income.

    Example 6: Recouped expenditure

    John bought a building in 2000 for $200,000 and incurred $10,000 in legal costs associated with the purchase. As part of a settlement, the vendor agreed to pay $4,000 of the legal costs. John did not claim as a tax deduction any part of the $6,000 he paid in legal costs.

    He later sells the building. As he received reimbursement of $4,000 of the legal costs, in working out his capital gain, he includes only the $6,000 he incurred in the cost base.

    End of example

    If you acquire a CGT asset and only part of the expenditure relates to the acquisition of the CGT asset, you can only include that part of the expenditure that is reasonably attributable to the acquisition of the asset in its cost base and reduced cost base.

    Apportionment is also required if you incur expenditure and only part of that expenditure relates to another element of the cost base and reduced cost base.

    Similarly, if a CGT event happens only to part of your CGT asset, you generally apportion the asset’s cost base and reduced cost base to work out the capital gain or capital loss from the CGT event.

    Consolidated groups

    The rules that apply to members of a consolidated group modify the application of the CGT rules.

    For more information about the consolidation rules go to Consolidation.

    End of find out more
    General value shifting regime

    Value shifting generally occurs when a dealing or transaction between two parties is not at market value and results in the value of one asset decreasing and (usually) the value of another asset increasing.

    The general value shifting regime (GVSR) rules apply to value shifts that arise:

    • because interests in a company or trust are issued or bought back at other than market value, or because their rights are varied so that the value of some interests increases while the value of others decreases (direct value shifts on interests)
    • because two entities under the same control or ownership conduct dealings or transactions that are neither at market value nor arm’s length, so that the value of interests in one entity decreases while (usually) the value of interests in the other entity increases (indirect value shifting), and
    • from the creation of a right over a non-depreciating asset in favour of an associate for less than market value (direct value shifts by creating rights).

    The rules on direct value shifts on interests target only equity or loan interests held by an individual or entity that controls the company or trust, the controller’s associates and, if the company or trust is closely held, any active participants in the arrangement.

    The indirect value shifting rules target only equity or loan interests held by an individual or entity that controls the two entities conducting the dealing or transaction and the controller’s associates. But if the two entities are closely held, the rules also target equity or loan interests held by two or more common owners of those entities, the common owner’s associates and any active participants in the arrangement.

    There are also exclusions and safe harbours that limit the operation of the rules.

    If the rules apply, you may need to adjust:

    • the cost base and reduced cost base of equity and loan interests affected by the value shift, or
    • a realised loss or gain on the disposal of the relevant assets.

    In some cases, there may also be an immediate capital gain.

    For more information on whether the GVSR rules apply to you, see:

    General value shifting regime: who it affects

    General value shifting regime: overview of provisions.

    End of find out more
    Other special rules

    There are other rules that may affect the cost base and reduced cost base of an asset. For example, they are calculated differently:

    Debt forgiveness

    A debt is forgiven if you are freed from the obligation to pay it. Commercial debt forgiveness rules apply to debts forgiven after 27 June 1996. A debt is a commercial debt if part or all of the interest payable on the debt is, or would be, an allowable deduction.

    Under the commercial debt forgiveness rules, a forgiven amount may reduce (in the following order) your:

    • prior income year revenue losses
    • net capital losses from earlier years
    • deductible expenditure
    • assets’ cost base and reduced cost base.

    These rules do not apply if the debt is forgiven:

    • as a result of an action under bankruptcy law
    • in a deceased person’s will, or
    • for reasons of natural love and affection.

    Example 7: Applying a forgiven debt

    On 1 July 2012, Josef had available net capital losses from earlier years of $9,000. On 3 January 2013, he sold shares he had owned for more than 12 months for $20,000. They had a cost base (no indexation) of $7,500. On 1 April 2013, a commercial debt of $15,000 that Josef owed to AZC Pty Ltd was forgiven. Josef had no prior income year revenue losses and no deductible capital expenditure.

    Josef must use part of the forgiven commercial debt amount to wipe out his net capital losses from earlier years and the rest to reduce the cost base of his shares. He works out the amount of net capital gain to include in his assessable income as follows:

    Adjust net capital losses from earlier years:

     

    Available net capital losses from earlier years

    $9,000

    less debt forgiveness adjustment

    $9,000

    Adjusted net capital losses from earlier years

    Nil

    Adjust cost base:

     

    Cost base of shares (no indexation)

    $7,500

    less debt forgiveness adjustment

    $6,000

    Adjusted cost base (no indexation)

    $1,500

    Calculate net capital gain:

     

    Sale of shares

    $20,000

    less adjusted cost base (no indexation)

    $1,500

    less adjusted net capital losses from earlier years

    Nil

    Capital gain (eligible for discount)

    $18,500

    less discount percentage (50%)

    $9,250

    Net capital gain

    $9,250

     

    End of example

    Acquiring CGT assets

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    End of attention

    Generally, you acquire a CGT asset when you become its owner. You may acquire a CGT asset for the following reasons:

    • Someone else has a CGT event (for example, the transfer of land to you under a contract of sale). If you acquired an asset because of a CGT event, you are generally taken to have acquired the asset at the time of the CGT event. For example, if you enter into a contract to purchase a CGT asset, the time of acquisition is when you enter into the contract. However, if you obtain an asset without entering into a contract, the time of acquisition is when you start being the asset’s owner.
    • Other events or transactions happen that are not the result of someone else having a CGT event. For example, if a company issues or allots shares to you (which is not a CGT event), you acquire the shares when you enter into a contract to acquire them or, if there is no contract, at the time of their issue or allotment.
    • Other special CGT rules apply. For example, if a CGT asset passes to you as a beneficiary of someone who has died, you are taken to have acquired the asset on the date of the person’s death. Also, if you start using your main residence to produce income for the first time after 20 August 1996, you are taken to have acquired it at its market value at the time it is first used to produce income.
    Time of acquisition

    The time a CGT asset is acquired is important for four reasons:

    • CGT generally does not apply to assets acquired before 20 September 1985 (pre-CGT assets)
    • different cost base rules apply to assets acquired at different times. For example, the costs of owning an asset (see Third element: costs of owning the asset) are not included in the cost base if you acquired it before 21 August 1991
    • it determines whether the cost base can be indexed for inflation and the extent of that indexation (see How to work out your capital gain or capital loss)
    • it determines whether you are eligible for the CGT discount. For example, one requirement is that you need to have owned the CGT asset for at least 12 months (see How to work out your capital gain or capital loss).

    Compensation

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    End of attention

    There can be CGT consequences when you receive compensation.

    You disregard some capital gains made as a result of you receiving compensation, for example, compensation for personal injury or compensation payable under certain government programs. For details of other compensation you disregard, see Exemptions. You may defer a capital gain made as a result of compensation for the loss, destruction or compulsory acquisition of an asset.

    A compensation payment may relate to the disposal of, or permanent damage to, an underlying asset. The underlying asset is the most relevant asset to which the compensation amount is most directly related. For example, if you receive compensation for damage to a rental property, the most relevant asset (the underlying asset) is the rental property.

    • If the payment relates to the disposal (in whole or part) of an underlying asset, the compensation is treated as additional capital proceeds for the disposal of that asset.
    • If the payment relates to permanent damage to, or permanent reduction in the value of, an underlying asset, the compensation is treated as a recoupment of all or part of the acquisition cost of the asset (that is, you reduce the cost base and reduced cost base by the amount of the compensation).
    • If the payment is not for an underlying asset, it relates to the disposal of the right to seek compensation. The capital gain or capital loss will be the difference between the incidental costs and the compensation received.

    For more information about the CGT consequences of receiving compensation, see Taxation Ruling TR 95/35External Link – Income tax: capital gains: treatment of compensation receipts.

    End of find out more

    Foreign residents, temporary residents and changing residency

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    End of attention

    There are special CGT rules that apply if you are a foreign resident or if you become or cease being an Australian resident. (Unless otherwise specified, ‘Australian resident’ means a resident of Australia for tax purposes.) There are also specific rules for temporary residents. These rules do not affect pre-CGT assets.

    For periods when you are a foreign resident or temporary resident only certain assets are subject to CGT. In addition, when you become an Australian resident or stop being one, the range of assets on which you pay CGT in Australia changes.

    Foreign residents

    If you are a foreign resident, you are subject to CGT if a CGT event happens to a CGT asset that is ‘taxable Australian property’. There are specific rules where the CGT asset is a share or right acquired under an employee share scheme and you are or have been a temporary resident (see Foreign income exemption for Australian residents and temporary residents – employee share schemes).

    Taxable Australian property

    Taxable Australian property includes:

    • a direct interest in real property situated in Australia or a mining, prospecting or quarrying right to minerals, petroleum and quarry materials situated in Australia
    • a CGT asset that you have used at any time in carrying on a business through a permanent establishment in Australia
    • an indirect Australian real property interest which is an interest in an entity, including a foreign entity, where you and your associates hold 10% or more of the entity and the value of your interest is principally attributable to Australian real property.

    Taxable Australian property also includes an option or right over one of the above.

    For CGT events happening on or after 20 May 2009, a leasehold interest in land situated in Australia is 'real property situated in Australia'.

    Certain CGT assets will also be taken to be taxable Australian property; see Choosing to disregard capital gains and capital losses when you cease being an Australian resident.

    If you are a foreign resident, or the trustee of a trust that was not a resident trust for CGT purposes, and:

    • you acquired a post-CGT indirect Australian real property interest before 11 May 2005, and
    • that interest did not have the necessary connection with Australia but is taxable Australian property
    • you are taken to have acquired it on 10 May 2005 for its market value on that day.
    Temporary residents

    Temporary residents are subject to the same CGT rules as foreign residents. However, there are specific rules where the CGT asset is a share or right acquired under an employee share scheme and you are, or have been, a temporary resident (see Foreign income exemption for Australian residents and temporary residents – employee share schemes).

    This means, if you are a temporary resident, you will be subject to CGT on CGT events that happen to taxable Australian property.

    You are a temporary resident if you:

    • hold a temporary visa granted under the Migration Act 1958  
    • are not an Australian resident within the meaning of the Social Security Act 1991, and
    • do not have a spouse who is an Australian resident within the meaning of the Social Security Act 1991.

    The Social Security Act 1991 defines an Australian resident as a person who resides in Australia and is an Australian citizen, the holder of a permanent visa, or a protected special category visa holder.

    Anyone who is an Australian resident for tax purposes after 6 April 2006, but is not a temporary resident, cannot later become a temporary resident, even if they later hold a temporary visa.

    Ceasing to be a temporary resident

    If you cease being a temporary resident and remain an Australian resident, then you are taken to have acquired assets (other than assets you acquired before 20 September 1985) that are not taxable Australian property for their market value at the time you ceased being a temporary resident. There is an exception to this rule for employee shares and rights.

    Becoming a resident

    When you become an Australian resident (other than a temporary resident), you are taken to have acquired certain assets at the time you became a resident for their market value at that time.

    This does not apply to assets you acquired before 20 September 1985 (pre-CGT assets) and assets that were taxable Australian property.

    If you have become a resident, the general cost base rules apply to any CGT assets that are taxable Australian property.

    Ceasing to be an Australian resident

    If you cease being an Australian resident, or ceased being a resident trust for CGT purposes, you are taken to have disposed of each of your assets that are not taxable Australian property for their market value at the time you ceased being a resident. In the case of any indirect Australian real property interests and options or rights to acquire such interests, you are taken to have immediately reacquired these assets for their market value. See Taxable Australian property.

    Exemption for a short-term resident who ceases being an Australian resident

    If you are an individual who was in Australia on 6 April 2006 and have remained here as an Australian resident since that date, an exemption applies if you satisfy certain conditions. You disregard the capital gain or capital loss if you were an Australian resident for less than a total of five years during the 10 years before you stopped being one, and either:

    • owned the asset before last becoming an Australian resident
    • inherited the asset after last becoming an Australian resident.
    Exemption for a temporary resident who ceases being an Australian resident

    If you are a temporary resident when you cease to be an Australian resident, you are not taken to have disposed of any of your assets.

    Choosing to disregard capital gains and capital losses when you cease being an Australian resident

    If you are an individual, you can choose to disregard all capital gains and capital losses you made when you stopped being a resident.

    If you ceased being a resident and make this choice, the assets are taken to be taxable Australian property until the earlier of:

    • a CGT event happening to the assets (for example, their sale or disposal), or
    • you again becoming an Australian resident.

    The effect of making this choice is that the increase or decrease in value of the assets from the time you cease being a resident to the time of the next CGT event, or of you again becoming a resident, is also taken into account in working out your capital gains or capital losses on those assets. (For information about when and how you make a choice, see Choices.)

    Choices

    Attention

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

    End of attention

    There are a number of provisions in the CGT laws that allow you to make a choice.

    Some of the provisions allow you to defer or roll over a capital gain you make when a CGT event happens (such as exchanging an asset for a replacement asset) until a later CGT event (such as selling the replacement asset).

    When and how you make a choice

    The general rule under CGT law is that you must make a choice by the day you lodge your income tax return for the income year in which the relevant CGT event happened.

    The way you prepare your tax return is sufficient evidence of your choice. However, there are some exceptions:

    • companies must make some decisions about replacement asset rollovers earlier
    • choices relating to the small business retirement exemption must be made in writing, and
    • choices relating to the assessment of capital gains of resident testamentary trusts must be made by a trustee within a specific period.

    Once you make such a choice, it cannot be changed. Your choice is binding.

    However, there are some circumstances when we consider that you have not made a choice. These are if you lodge your tax return without being aware that:

    • events have happened that required you to make a choice, or
    • a choice was available.

    In these circumstances, we may allow you further time to make a choice.

    Factors to be considered for an extension of time

    To determine if further time should be allowed, we consider factors such as whether:

    • you have an acceptable explanation for not making the choice by the time it should have been made
    • it would be fair and equitable in the circumstances to allow you further time to make a choice
    • prejudice to the Commissioner of Taxation (Commissioner) may result from additional time being allowed to you (note that the absence of prejudice by itself is not enough to justify the granting of an extension)
    • it would be fair and equitable to people in similar positions and the wider public interest
    • any mischief is involved.

    Each case is decided on its own merits.

    How to request an extension of time to make a choice

    If you have lodged a tax return without knowing a choice was available to you under CGT law and you want to find out how to make a request for further time to make the choice, see Choices you make under capital gains tax.

    Examples of choices available under capital gains tax

    CGT choices you can make include:

    • You may use the indexation method rather than the CGT discount method if a CGT event happens to a CGT asset you acquired before 21 September 1999 (or are taken to have acquired before that date for the purpose of using those methods). See Choosing the indexation or discount method.
    • You may make a capital loss for the income year in which a liquidator or administrator declares in writing that shares or securities held in a company are worthless. See Shares in a company in liquidation or administration.
    • You may roll over a capital gain if a company in which you hold shares is taken over and you receive shares in the takeover company and the takeover meets certain conditions. This is known as a scrip for scrip rollover. It can also apply if a trust or fund in which you hold units is taken over and you receive units in the takeover trust or fund. The company, trust or fund will usually advise investors if the conditions for rollover are met. See Scrip for scrip rollover.
    • You may roll over a capital gain if you hold shares in a company that demerges (or splits), you receive shares in the demerged company, and the demerger meets certain conditions. A rollover can also apply if you hold units in a trust or fund that demerges and you receive units in the demerged trust or fund. The head company or head trust or fund will usually advise investors if the conditions for a rollover are met. See Demergers.
    • You may rollover a capital gain if you receive money or property (or both) as compensation for the loss or destruction of an asset or for the compulsory acquisition of property if certain conditions are met. See Loss, destruction or compulsory acquisition of an asset.
    • You may treat a dwelling as your main residence even though

    You make the choice when you prepare your income tax return for the income year in which you enter into the contract to sell the dwelling. If you own both:

    • the dwelling that you can choose to treat as your main residence for one of the periods above, and
    • the dwelling you actually lived in during that period
    • then you make the choice for the income year in which you enter into the contract to sell the first of those dwellings.

    Exemptions and rollovers

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

    End of attention

    There are exemptions and rollovers that may allow you to reduce, defer or disregard your capital gain or capital loss.

    If you are required to complete a CGT schedule, you may be required to provide information regarding the capital gains disregarded: see part B of this guide for individuals or part C for companies, trusts and funds.

    There is no rollover or exemption for a capital gain you make when you sell an asset and put the proceeds into a superannuation fund, use the proceeds to purchase an identical or similar asset, or transfer an asset into a superannuation fund. For example, if you sell a rental property and put the proceeds into a superannuation fund, or use the proceeds to purchase another rental property, a rollover is not available. However, an asset, or the capital proceeds from the sale of an asset, may be transferred into a superannuation fund in order to satisfy certain conditions under the small business retirement exemption. For more information about the CGT concessions for small business, see the Guide to capital gains tax concessions for small business 2013.

    To find out when a rollover is available, see Rollovers.

    Exemptions

    Generally, capital gains and capital losses from pre-CGT assets (that is, an asset you acquired before 20 September 1985) are exempt. However, CGT event K6 can result in capital gains if certain CGT events happen to pre-CGT shares in a company or to pre-CGT interests in a trust. See Taxation Ruling TR 2004/18External Link – Capital gains: application of CGT event K6 (about pre-CGT shares and pre-CGT trust interests) in section 104-230 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997.

    Another important exemption is for a capital gain or capital loss you make from a CGT event relating to a dwelling that was your main residence. This rule can change, however, depending on how you came to own the dwelling and what you have done with it, for example, if you rented it out (see Real estate and main residence for more information).

    Capital gains and capital losses that are also disregarded include those you make from:

    • a car (that is, a motor vehicle designed to carry a load of less than one tonne and fewer than nine passengers) or motorcycle or similar vehicle
    • a decoration awarded for valour or brave conduct, unless you paid money or gave any other property for it
    • collectables acquired for $500 or less
    • a capital gain from a personal use asset acquired for $10,000 or less
    • any capital loss from a personal use asset
    • CGT assets used solely to produce exempt income or some amounts of non-assessable non-exempt income (that is, tax-free income)
    • a CGT asset that is your trading stock at the time of a CGT event
    • certain profits, gains or losses resulting from the disposal of shares in a pooled development fund (see appendix 4 of the Company tax return instructions 2013 (NAT 0669)
    • compensation or damages you receive for any
    • wrong or injury you suffer in your occupation
    • wrong, injury or illness you or your relatives suffer
    • compensation you receive under the firearms surrender arrangements
    • winnings or losses from gambling, a game or a competition with prizes
    • transferring an asset into a Special Disability Trust for no consideration
    • a reimbursement or payment of your expenses (but not for the loss, destruction or transfer of an asset) under a scheme established
    • by an Australian government agency, a local government body or foreign government agency
    • under an Act or legislative instrument (for example, regulations or local government by-laws)
    • a reimbursement or payment of expenses under the Unlawful Termination Assistance Scheme or the Alternative Dispute Resolution Assistance Scheme
    • a reimbursement or payment of your expenses under the General Practice Rural Incentives Program or the Sydney Aircraft Noise Insulation Project
    • a reimbursement or payment made under the M4/M5 Cashback Scheme
    • a re-establishment grant made under section 52A of the Farm Household Support Act 1992
    • a sugar industry exit grant paid under the Sugar Industry Reform program
    • tobacco industry exit grant paid under the Tobacco Growers Adjustment Assistance Programme 2006 if you undertook to not become the owner or operator of an agricultural enterprise within five years after receiving the grant
    • a right or entitlement to a tax offset, deduction or a similar benefit under an Australian law, under the law of a foreign country or part of a foreign country
    • payments made under the German Forced Labour Compensation Programme (GFLCP), and certain payments or property received by Australian residents as a result of persecution during the Second World War
    • some types of testamentary gifts
    • assignment of a right under, or for, a general insurance policy held with an HIH company, to the Commonwealth, the trustee of the HIH trust or a prescribed entity
    • your rights being created or your rights ending for making a superannuation agreement (as defined in the Family Law Act 1975), the termination or setting aside of such an agreement or such an agreement otherwise coming to an end
    • the ending of rights that directly relate to the breakdown of your marriage or relationship, including cash you receive as part of your marriage or relationship breakdown settlement
    • a CGT event happening for a segregated current pension asset (made by a complying superannuation entity)
    • in certain circumstances, a general insurance policy, a life insurance policy or an annuity instrument
    • your share of certain profits , gains or losses arising from disposal of investments by a venture capital limited partnership (VCLP), an early stage venture capital limited partnership (ESVCLP) or an Australian venture capital fund of funds (AFOF) (see Venture capital tax concession: overview)
    • a financial arrangement where gains and losses are calculated under the TOFA rules (see section 118-27 of ITAA 1997External Link)
    • ceasing to hold an eligible vessel to the extent it is used to produce certain exempt income (see subsection 104-235(1AA) of ITAA 1997External Link).

    Other exemptions: capital gains

    You may reduce your capital gain if, because of a CGT event, you have included an amount in your assessable income other than as a capital gain. For example, if you make a profit on the sale of land that is included in your assessable income as ordinary income, you don’t also include that profit as a capital gain.

    There is a range of concessions that allow you to disregard part or all of a capital gain made from an active asset you use in your small business. For more information, see Capital gains tax (CGT) concessions for small business – overview.

    Other exemptions: capital losses

    You disregard any capital loss you make:

    • from the expiry, forfeiture, surrender or assignment of a lease if the lease is not used solely or mainly for the purpose of producing assessable income
    • from a payment to any entity of personal services income that is included in an individual’s assessable income under the alienation of personal services income provisions, or any other amount attributable to that income
    • as an exempt entity.
    Rollovers

    You may defer or disregard (that is, rollover) a capital gain or capital loss until a later CGT event happens. The types of rollovers available are listed below. Only the first four types are covered in detail in this guide. If you would like information on the others, contact us.

    Marriage or relationship breakdown

    In certain cases where an asset or a share of an asset is transferred from one spouse to another after their marriage or relationship breaks down, any CGT is automatically deferred until a later CGT event happens (for example, until the former spouse sells the asset to someone else). For more examples of how CGT obligations are affected by marriage or relationship breakdown, see Marriage or relationship breakdown.

    Loss, destruction or compulsory acquisition of an asset

    You may defer a capital gain in some cases where a CGT asset has been lost or destroyed or is compulsorily acquired (see Loss, destruction or compulsory acquisition of an asset).

    Scrip for scrip

    You may be able to defer a capital gain if you dispose of your shares in a company or interest in a trust as a result of a takeover (see Investments in shares and units).

    Demergers

    You may be able to defer a capital gain or capital loss if a CGT event happens to your shares in a company or interest in a trust as a result of a demerger (see Investments in shares and units).

    Other replacement asset rollovers

    You may be able to defer a capital gain or capital loss when you replace an asset in the following circumstances:

    • an individual or trustee disposes of assets to, or creates assets in, a wholly owned company
    • partners dispose of assets to, or create assets in, a wholly owned company
    • a CGT event happens to small business assets and you acquire replacement assets
    • your statutory licence ends and is replaced with another statutory licence or licences which authorises substantially similar activity to the original licence or licences
    • you are a financial service provider who had assets (for example, licences) replaced on transition to the financial services reform (FSR) regime
    • your property is converted to strata title
    • you exchange shares in the same company or units in the same unit trust
    • you exchange rights or options to acquire shares in a company or units in a unit trust
    • you exchange shares in one company for shares in an interposed company
    • you exchange units in a unit trust for shares in a company
    • a body is converted to an incorporated company
    • you acquire a Crown lease
    • you acquire a depreciating asset
    • you acquire prospecting and mining entitlements
    • you dispose of a security under a securities lending arrangement
    • a trust restructure ends your ownership of units or interests
    • a membership interest in a medical defence organisation (MDO) is replaced with a similar membership interest in another MDO and both MDOs are companies limited by guarantee
    • you replace an entitlement to water with one or more different water entitlements.

    If you would like information on these rollovers, contact us or your recognised tax adviser.

    Other same asset rollovers

    You may be able to defer a capital gain or capital loss when you transfer or dispose of assets in the following circumstances:

    • an individual or trustee transfers a CGT asset to a wholly owned company
    • a partner transfers their interest in a CGT asset to a wholly owned company
    • a CGT asset is transferred between related companies
    • a trust disposes of a CGT asset to a company under a trust restructure
    • a CGT event happens because of a change to a trust deed of a complying approved deposit fund, a complying superannuation fund or a fund that accepts worker entitlement contributions
    • a CGT asset is transferred from one small superannuation fund to another complying superannuation fund because of a marriage or relationship breakdown
    • a trustee of a trust creates a trust over a CGT asset or transfers a CGT asset to another trust where both the transferring and receiving trusts meet certain requirements.

    If you would like information on these rollovers, contact us or your recognised tax adviser.

    CGT and foreign exchange gains and losses

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    A CGT asset can be denominated in a foreign currency and foreign currency cash itself can be a CGT asset. Gains or losses that you make during the period that you hold such assets will generally be taxed as a capital gain or capital loss respectively. However, if dealings with foreign currency denominated assets give rise to rights to receive or obligations to pay foreign currency, the rights or obligations may be subject to the foreign exchange (forex) provisions when a right or obligation ceases. For example, if a contract you enter into to sell an overseas rental property is denominated in foreign currency, you will have a right to receive foreign currency (being the sale price of the rental property). The right ceases on payment of the foreign currency. Such rights and obligations will usually arise on the acquisition or disposal of a CGT asset.

    A forex gain or loss commonly arises for the acquisition or disposal of a CGT asset denominated in foreign currency where there is a currency exchange rate fluctuation between the date you entered into the contract and the date of settlement of the contract (when payment occurs). Currency fluctuations between the date of acquisition and date of disposal of a CGT asset are taken into account when the cost base and capital proceeds are translated into Australian currency.

    It may be that the gain or loss you make on the ending of rights for foreign currency, a disposal of foreign currency or a right to receive foreign currency is taxable under both CGT and the forex measures. Generally, to the extent that both the forex measures and CGT bring to account a forex gain or loss, the forex measures take precedence, such that the forex gain or loss is brought to account only under the forex provisions.

    In addition, if the TOFA rules apply to you, your foreign exchange gains and losses may be brought to account under those TOFA rules instead of the forex measures. For more information about the TOFA rules, see Guide to the taxation of financial arrangements (TOFA) rules.

    For more information, see Foreign exchange (forex): overview (NAT 8985).

    Short-term foreign exchange gains and losses rules

    Some short-term foreign exchange (forex) gains or losses, which arise under transactions for the acquisition or disposal of certain CGT assets, will be treated as capital gains or capital losses. In such cases, CGT events K10 or K11 will happen, which will result in the forex gain or loss being integrated into the tax treatment of the CGT asset, or matched to the character of the gain or loss that would arise from the disposal of the asset. For the short-term rules to apply, the due date for payment must be within 12 months of acquiring or disposing of the asset. For more information, see Foreign exchange (forex): the 12 month rule (NAT 9391).

    Translating (converting) foreign currency denominated CGT assets to Australian dollars

    For information on what exchange rates to use in translating foreign currency amounts into Australian currency, see Foreign exchange (forex): the general translation rule (NAT 9339)

    Examples of the application of forex rules to CGT assets

    For examples of the application of the forex rules to acquisitions and disposals of foreign currency denominated CGT assets, see:

    CGT and depreciating assets

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Under the uniform capital allowance (UCA) system, a capital gain or capital loss from the disposal of a depreciating asset will only arise to the extent that you have used the asset for a non-taxable purpose (for example, used for private purposes).

    You calculate a capital gain or capital loss from a depreciating asset used for a non-taxable purpose using the UCA concepts of cost and termination value, not the concepts of capital proceeds and cost base found in the CGT provisions.

    If a balancing adjustment event occurs for a depreciating asset that you have at some time used for a non-taxable purpose, a CGT event happens (see CGT event K7 in appendix 1). The most common balancing adjustment event for a depreciating asset occurs when you stop holding it (for example, you sell, lose or destroy it) or stop using it.

    Calculating a capital gain or capital loss for a depreciating asset

    You make a capital gain if the termination value of your depreciating asset is greater than its cost. You make a capital loss if the reverse is the case, the asset’s cost is more than its termination value.

    You use different formulas to calculate a capital gain or capital loss depending on whether the asset is in a low-value pool or not.

    Depreciating asset not in a low-value pool: capital gain

    If your depreciating asset is not a pooled asset, you calculate the capital gain as follows:

    (termination value – cost)

    x

    sum of reductions (note 1)
    total decline (note 2)

     

    Depreciating asset not in a low-value pool: capital loss

    You calculate the capital loss from a depreciating asset that is not a pooled asset as follows:

    (cost – termination value)

    ×

    sum of reductions (note 1)
    total decline (note 2)

     

    Example 8: Capital gain on depreciating asset

    Larry purchased a truck in August 2011 for $5,000 and sold it in June 2013 for $7,000. He used the truck 10% of the time for private purposes. The decline in value of the truck under the UCA system up to the date of sale was $2,000. Therefore, the sum of his reductions relating to his private use is $200 (10% of $2,000). Larry calculates his capital gain from CGT event K7 as follows:

    ($7,000 – $5,000)

    ×

    200
    2,000

     

    Capital gain from CGT event K7 = $200 (before applying any discount).

    End of example

    Depreciating asset in a low-value pool: capital gain

    You calculate the capital gain from a depreciating asset in a low-value pool as follows:

    (termination value – cost) × (1 – taxable use fraction)

    Depreciating asset in a low-value pool: capital loss

    You calculate the capital loss from a depreciating asset in a low-value pool as follows:

    (cost – termination value) × (1 – taxable use fraction (note 3))

    Notes

    1

    The sum of the reductions in your deductions for the asset’s decline in value that is attributable to your use of the asset, or having it installed ready for use, for a non-taxable purpose.

    2

    The decline in the value of the depreciating asset since you started to hold it.

    3

    Taxable use fraction is the percentage of the asset’s use that is for producing your assessable income, expressed as a fraction. This is the percentage you reasonably estimate at the time you allocated the asset to the low-value pool.

     

    Application of CGT concessions

    A capital gain from a depreciating asset may qualify for the CGT discount if the relevant conditions are satisfied. If the CGT discount applies, there is no reduction of the capital gain under the indexation method, as detailed in How to work out your capital gain or capital loss.

    The small business CGT concessions do not apply to a capital gain made from the disposal of a depreciating asset, because a capital gain can only arise out of an asset’s use for non-taxable purposes (for example, to the extent it is used for private purposes).

    Do any CGT exemptions apply to a depreciating asset?

    A number of exemptions may apply to a capital gain or capital loss made from the disposal of a depreciating asset:

    • pre-CGT assets; you disregard a capital gain or capital loss from a depreciating asset if the asset was acquired before 20 September 1985
    • assets of small business entities; you disregard a capital gain or capital loss from a depreciating asset if you are a small business entity and you can deduct an amount for the depreciating asset’s decline in value under the small business entity capital allowance provisions for the income year in which the balancing adjustment event occurred
    • personal use asset
    • if a depreciating asset is a personal use asset (that is, one used or kept mainly for personal use and enjoyment), you disregard any capital loss from CGT event K7
    • you also disregard a capital gain under CGT event K7 from a personal use asset costing $10,000 or less
    • collectables; you disregard a capital gain or a capital loss from a depreciating asset that is a collectable costing $500 or less
    • balancing adjustment event and CGT event; you only include a balancing adjustment event that gives rise to a capital gain or capital loss under CGT event K7. However, capital proceeds received under other CGT events (for example, CGT event D1) may still be relevant for a depreciating asset as CGT events are not the equivalent of balancing adjustment events.
    Treatment of intellectual property

    Under the capital allowance rules intellectual property is a depreciating asset.

    If you grant or assign an interest in an item of intellectual property, you are treated as if you had stopped holding part of the item. You are also treated as if, just before you stop holding that part, you had split the original item of intellectual property into two parts, the part you stopped holding and the rest of the original item. You determine a first element of the cost for each part.

    This treatment applies if a licence is granted over an item of intellectual property. To this extent, the treatment of intellectual property is different from other depreciating assets. The granting of a licence in respect of other depreciating assets would result in CGT event D1 (about creating contractual rights) happening.

    For more information about depreciating assets, see the Guide to depreciating assets 2013.

    End of find out more

    Where to now?

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    How to work out your capital gain or capital loss in part A explains how to calculate a capital gain using one of the three methods:

    • indexation
    • discount
    • 'other'.

    Trust distributions in part A explains how to calculate your capital gain if a managed fund or trust has distributed a capital gain to you. You must take into account capital gains included in trust distributions in working out your net capital gain or capital loss.

    For more specific directions on how to complete your tax return, go to:

    • part B, for individuals
    • part C for companies, trusts and funds (individuals who use the worksheets may find steps 1, 2 and 3 in part C useful, ignore the word ‘entity’).

    How to work out your capital gain or capital loss

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    This section explains how to work out each capital gain or capital loss you made during the income year.

    It does not explain how to work out your net capital gain or net capital losses carried forward to later income years. If you are completing the Tax return for individuals 2013 (NAT 2541) and want more information on how to calculate your net capital gain for the income year or net capital losses carried forward to later income years (including how to deduct any unapplied net capital losses from earlier years), see part B of this guide. For more information about companies, trusts and funds or about completing the CGT summary worksheet, see part C of this guide.

    Attention

    New terms

    We may use some terms that are new to you. These words are explained in Definitions. Generally, they are also explained in detail in the section where they first appear.

    End of attention

    Three methods of calculating capital gains

    Attention

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

    End of attention

    There are three methods that are used to calculate a capital gain: the indexation method, the discount method and the 'other' method. There is only one way to calculate a capital loss.

    The three methods of calculating capital gains are summarised and compared in table 2 Capital gain calculation methods. They are explained in more detail in the following pages. In some cases, you may be able to choose either the discount method or the indexation method to calculate your capital gain. In these cases, you use the method that gives you the better result.

    The CGT summary worksheet (PDF, 309KB) shows the three methods of calculating a capital gain. You are not obliged to use this worksheet, but you may find it helps you calculate your capital gain or capital loss for each CGT event.

    The 'other' method

    Attention

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

    End of attention

    This is the simplest of the three methods. You must use the 'other' method to calculate your capital gain if you have bought and sold your asset within 12 months or generally for CGT events that do not involve an asset. In these cases, the indexation and discount methods do not apply.

    Generally, to use the 'other' method, you simply subtract your cost base (what the asset cost you) from your capital proceeds (how much you sold it for). The amount of proceeds left is your capital gain. For some types of CGT events, a cost base is not relevant. See appendix 1 for the amounts to use.

    Example 9: Calculating a capital gain using the 'other' method

    Marie-Anne bought a property for $250,000 under a contract dated 23 June 2012. The contract provided for the payment of a deposit of $25,000 on that date, with the balance of $225,000 to be paid on settlement on 4 August 2012.

    Marie-Anne paid stamp duty of $5,000 on 20 July 2012. On 4 August 2012, she received an account for solicitor’s fees of $2,000 which she paid as part of the settlement process.

    Marie-Anne sold the property on 16 October 2012 (the day the contracts were exchanged) for $315,000. She incurred costs of $1,500 in solicitor’s fees and $4,000 in agent’s commission.

    As she bought and sold her property within 12 months, Marie-Anne must use the 'other' method to calculate her capital gain.

    Deposit

    $25,000

    Balance

    $225,000

    Stamp duty

    $5,000

    Solicitors fees for purchase of property

    $2,000

    Solicitors fees for sale of property

    $1,500

    Agents commission

    $4,000

    Cost base (total)

    $262,500

    Marie-Anne works out her capital gain as follows:

    Capital proceeds

    $315,000

    less cost base

    $262,500

    Capital gain calculated using the 'other' method

    $52,500

     

    Assuming Marie-Anne has not made any other capital losses or capital gains in the 2012–13 income year, and does not have any unapplied net capital losses from earlier years, the net capital gain to be included at item 18 on her Tax return for individuals (supplementary section) 2013 (NAT 2679) is $52,500.

    End of example

    The indexation method

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Use the indexation method to calculate your capital gain if:

    • a CGT event happened to an asset you acquired before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999, and
    • you owned the asset for 12 months or more.

    If you are not a company and you meet the two conditions above and you wish to use the indexation method, you must choose to do so, otherwise the discount method will apply. If you are a company (other than a listed investment company) and the capital gain meets the conditions listed above, you must use the indexation method to calculate the capital gain. Specific rules affect certain assets of a life insurance company.

    Under the indexation method, you increase each amount included in an element of the cost base (other than those in the third element, costs of owning the asset) by an indexation factor.

    The indexation factor is worked out using the consumer price index (CPI) at appendix 2.

    If the CGT event happened on or after 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999, you can only index the elements of your cost base up to 30 September 1999. You use this formula:

    Indexation factor

    =

    CPI for quarter ending 30.9.99 (123.4)
    CPI for quarter in which expenditure was incurred

     

    If the CGT event happened before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999, you use this formula:

    Indexation factor

    =

     CPI for quarter when CGT event happened  
    CPI for quarter in which expenditure was incurred

     

    Work out the indexation factor to three decimal places, rounding up if the fourth decimal place is five or more.

    For most assets, you index expenditure from the date you incur it, even if you do not pay some of the expenditure until a later time. However, there is an exception for partly paid shares or units acquired on or after 16 August 1989. If the company or trust later makes a call on the shares or units, you use the CPI for the quarter in which you made that later payment.

    There are some exceptions to the requirement that you must have owned an asset for at least 12 months for indexation to apply. For example, you can use the indexation method if:

    • you acquire a CGT asset as a legal personal representative or a beneficiary of a deceased estate. The 12-month requirement is satisfied if the deceased acquired the asset 12 months or more before you disposed of it, or
    • you acquired an asset as the result of a marriage or relationship breakdown. You will satisfy the 12-month requirement if the combined period your spouse and you owned the asset is more than 12 months.

    The discount method

    Attention

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

    End of attention

    Use the discount method to calculate your capital gain if:

    • you are an individual, a trust or a complying superannuation entity
    • a CGT event happens to an asset you own
    • the CGT event happened after 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999
    • you acquired the asset at least 12 months before the CGT event, and
    • you did not choose to use the indexation method.

    Generally, the discount method does not apply to companies, although it can apply to a limited number of capital gains made by life insurance companies.

    In determining whether you acquired the CGT asset at least 12 months before the CGT event, you exclude both the day of acquisition and the day of the CGT event.

    Note that if you:

    • acquire a property and construct a building or make improvements to it that are not separate assets (see Separate assets), and
    • owned the property for at least 12 months (even if you did not construct the new building or improvements more than 12 months before the CGT event happened)

    you can use the discount method to work out your capital gain from the property.

    Example 10: Discount method

    Sally acquired a CGT asset on 2 February 2012. She is entitled to apply the CGT discount if a CGT event happened to that asset on or after 3 February 2013.

    End of example

    In certain circumstances, you may be eligible for the CGT discount even if you have not owned the asset for at least 12 months. For example if:

    • you acquire a CGT asset as a legal personal representative or as a beneficiary of a deceased estate. The 12-month requirement is satisfied if the asset was acquired by the deceased
    • before 20 September 1985 and you disposed of it 12 months or more after they died, or
    • on or after 20 September 1985 and you disposed of it 12 months or more after they acquired it
    • you acquired a CGT asset as the result of a marriage or relationship breakdown and rollover applies. You will satisfy the 12-month requirement if the combined period your spouse and you owned the asset was more than 12 months
    • a CGT asset was compulsorily acquired, lost or destroyed and you acquired a rollover replacement asset, you will satisfy the 12-month requirement for the replacement asset if the period of ownership of the original asset and the replacement asset was at least 12 months.

    Table 2: Capital gain calculation methods

      Indexation method Discount method 'other' method
    Description of method

    Allows you to increase the cost base by applying an indexation factor based on CPI up to September 1999

    Allows you to discount your capital gain

    Basic method of subtracting the cost base from the capital proceeds

    When to use the method

    Use for an asset owned for 12 months or more if it produces a better result than the discount method. Use only for assets acquired before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999.

    Use for an asset owned for 12 months or more if it produces a better result than the indexation method.

    Use when the indexation and discount methods do not apply (for example, if you have bought and sold an asset within 12 months).

    How to calculate your capital gain using the method

    Apply the relevant indexation factor (see CPI table at appendix 2), then subtract the indexed cost base from the capital proceeds (see worked example 13).

    Subtract the cost base from the capital proceeds, deduct any capital losses, then reduce by the relevant discount percentage (see worked example 13).

    Subtract the cost base (or the amount specified by the relevant CGT event) from the capital proceeds (see worked example 9).

     

    Certain capital gains are excluded

    The CGT discount does not apply to capital gains from certain CGT events. The CGT discount does not apply to these CGT events:

    • D1 Creating contractual or other rights
    • D2 Granting an option
    • D3 Granting a right to income from mining
    • E9 Creating a trust over future property
    • F1 Granting a lease
    • F2 Granting a long-term lease
    • F5 Lessor receives payment for changing a lease
    • H2 Receipt for an event relating to a CGT asset
    • J2 Change for replacement asset or improved asset after a rollover under Subdivision 152-E
    • J5 Failure to acquire replacement asset and to incur fourth element expenditure after a rollover under Subdivision 152-E
    • J6 Cost of acquisition of replacement asset or amount of fourth element expenditure, or both, not sufficient to cover disregarded capital gain
    • K10 Forex realisation gain.

    The full list of CGT events is shown at appendix 1.

    If you make a capital gain from a CGT event that creates a new asset (for example, receiving a payment for agreeing not to do something, that is, entering into a restrictive covenant) you cannot satisfy the 12-month ownership rule, so your CGT event does not qualify for the CGT discount.

    The CGT discount may be denied:

    • if the CGT event that gave rise to the capital gain occurred under an agreement that was made within 12 months of the acquisition of the asset
    • on the disposal of certain shares or trust interests in non-widely held companies and trusts, that is, those with fewer than 300 members
    • if an arrangement was entered into for the purposes of claiming the CGT discount under which an ‘income’ asset was converted into a ‘capital’ asset (conversion of income to capital) (Part IVA of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936).

    If the ‘home first used to produce income’ rule applies and the period between when you first used the dwelling to produce income and the CGT event happening is not at least 12 months, the discount method is not available.

    Discount percentage

    The discount percentage is the percentage by which you reduce your capital gain. You can reduce the capital gain only after you have applied all the capital losses for the income year and any unapplied net capital losses from earlier years.

    The discount percentage is 50% for individuals and trusts, and 33 1/3% for complying superannuation entities and eligible life insurance companies.

    Choosing the indexation or discount method

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    For assets you acquired before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and have held for 12 months or more, you can choose to use the indexation method or the discount method to calculate your capital gain. There is no one factor to use as a basis to select the better option as it depends on the type of asset you own, how long you have owned it, the dates you owned it and past rates of inflation. Because capital losses must be offset against capital gains before the discount is applied, your choice may also depend on the amount of capital losses that you have available. For information about when and how, see Choices.

    Example 11: Comparison of discount and indexation methods

    Justin sold some land and has a $10,000 capital gain under the discount method (before applying the CGT discount) or a $7,000 capital gain under the indexation method. If Justin has no capital losses, the discount method will produce the smaller capital gain (that is, $5,000).

    However, Justin also made a capital loss of $5,000 on the sale of some shares. He will be better off using the indexation method to work out the capital gain from the sale of his land. Under this method, his net capital gain is $2,000 (that is, $7,000 minus $5,000). If he used the discount method, his net capital gain would be $2,500 (that is $10,000 minus $5,000, multiplied by 50%).

    End of example

    Example 12 below shows that applying one method to work out your capital gains on a whole parcel of shares you acquired before September 1999 may not be to your advantage if you have capital losses or net capital losses to apply.

    In this situation, you will get a better result if you apply the indexation method to sufficient shares to absorb the capital loss (or as much of the capital loss as you can) and apply the discount method to any remaining shares.

    Example 12: Capital gains on shares where you also have capital losses

    Clare sold a parcel of 500 shares in March 2013 for $12,500, that is, for $25 each. She had acquired the shares in March 1995 for $7,500, that is, for $15 each, including stamp duty and brokerage. There was no brokerage on the sale. Clare had no other capital gains or capital losses in 2012–13, although she has $3,500 net capital losses carried forward from previous income years.

    Because Clare owned the shares for more than 12 months she can use the discount method or the indexation method to work out her capital gains, whichever gives her a better result. Clare decides to work out her net capital gain by applying both the discount method and the indexation method to the whole parcel of shares:

     

    Using indexation method

    Using discount method

    Capital proceeds

    $12,500

    $12,500

    Cost base (acquisition cost x indexation factor)

    *$8,070

    $7,500

    Capital gain

    $4,430

    $5,000

    less capital losses

    $3,500

    $3,500

     

    $930

    $1,500

    CGT discount

    Nil

    $750

    Net capital gain

    $930

    $750

     

    *$7,500 x 1.076 (indexation factor is 123.4 ÷ 114.7 = 1.076)

    However, because each share is a separate asset, Clare can use different methods to work out her capital gains for shares within the parcel. The lowest net capital gain would result from her applying the indexation method to the sale of 395** shares, and the discount method to the remaining 105. She works out her net capital gain as follows:

    Indexation method (395 shares)

    Capital proceeds ($25 each)

    $9,875

    Cost base (395 x $15 x 1.076)

    $6,375

    Capital gain

    $3,500

    less capital losses

    $3,500

    Capital gain/(loss)

    Nil

       

    Discount method (105 shares)

    Capital proceeds ($25 each)

    $2,625

    Cost base (105 x $15)

    $1,575

    Capital gain

    $1,050

    less any remaining capital losses

    nil

     

    $1,050

    CGT discount

    $525

    Net capital gain

    $525

     

    ** To calculate this, Clare worked out the capital gain made on each share using the indexation method ($4,430 ÷ 500 = 8.86) and divided the capital loss by this amount ($3,500 ÷ 8.86 = 395).
    End of example

    It is probably best to calculate your capital gain using both methods to find out which gives you the better result. This is shown for Val in the worked example 13 below and in the completed Capital gain or capital loss worksheet (PDF, 100KB).

    Example 13: Choosing the indexation or discount method

    Val bought a property for $150,000 under a contract dated 24 June 1991. The contract provided for the payment of a deposit of $15,000 on that date, with the balance of $135,000 to be paid on settlement on 5 August 1991.

    She paid stamp duty of $5,000 on 20 July 1991. On 5 August 1991, she received an account for solicitor’s fees of $2,000, which she paid as part of the settlement process.

    She sold the property on 15 October 2012 (the day the contracts were exchanged) for $350,000. She incurred costs of $1,500 in solicitor’s fees and $4,000 in agent’s commission.

    Val’s capital gain calculated using the indexation method

    Deposit x indexation factor
    $15,000 x 1.164
    (indexation factor is 123.4 ÷ 106.0 = 1.164)

     

    $17,460

    Balance x indexation factor
    $135,000 x 1.164

     
    $157,140

    Stamp duty x indexation factor
    $5,000 x 1.158
    (indexation factor is 123.4 ÷ 106.6 = 1.158)

     

    $5,790

    Solicitors fees for purchase of property x indexation factor
    $2,000 x 1.158

     
    $2,316

    Solicitors fees for sale of property
    (indexation does not apply)

    $1,500

    Agents commission
    (indexation does not apply)

    $4,000

    Cost base (total)

    $188,206

    Val works out her capital gain as follows:

    Capital proceeds

    $350,000

    less cost base

    $188,206

    Capital gain
    (Val’s total current year capital gain using this method)

    $161,794

     

    Assuming Val has not made any other capital losses or capital gains in the 2012–13 income year and does not have any unapplied net capital losses from earlier years, her net capital gain using the indexation method is $161,794.

    Val’s capital gain calculated using the discount method

    Deposit

    $15,000

    Balance

    $135,000

    Stamp duty

    $5,000

    Solicitors fees for purchase of property

    $2,000

    Solicitors fees for sale of property

    $1,500

    Agents commission

    $4,000

    Cost base (total)

    $162,500

    Val works out her capital gain as follows:

    Capital proceeds

    $350,000

    less cost base

    $162,500

    Capital gain before applying discount
    (Val’s total current year capital gain using this method)

    $187,500

    less CGT discount
    (as Val has no capital losses)

    $93,750

    Net capital gain

    $93,750

     

    As the discount method provides Val with the better result, she will write the amount worked out using the discount method on her tax return rather than the amount worked out using the indexation method.

    The Capital gain or capital loss worksheet (PDF, 100KB) shows how Val might complete the worksheet using both methods.

    End of example

    How to calculate a capital loss

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Example 14: Calculating a capital loss – Antonio

    Antonio acquired a new income-producing asset on 28 September 1999 for $100,000, including stamp duty and legal costs. He sold it for $90,000 in November 2012. During the period he owned it, he was allowed capital works deductions of $7,500. Antonio works out his capital loss as follows:

    Cost base

    $100,000

    less capital works deductions

    $7,500

    Reduced cost base

    $92,500

    less capital proceeds

    $90,000

    Capital loss

    $2,500

     

    End of example

    Example 15: Calculating a capital loss – Chandra

    In July 1996, Chandra bought 800 shares at $3 per share. He incurred brokerage and stamp duty of $100. In December 2012, Chandra sold all 800 shares for $2.50 per share. He incurred brokerage of $75. He made a capital loss, calculated as follows:

    Calculation of reduced cost base

    Date expense incurred

    Description of expense

    Expense

    July 1996

    Purchase price

    $2,400

    July 1996

    Brokerage and stamp duty

    $100

    December 2012

    Brokerage

    $75

    Reduced cost base

     

    $2,575

    Calculation of capital loss

     

    Reduced cost base

    $2,575

    Capital proceeds 800 x $2.50

    $2,000

    Capital loss

    $575

     

    End of example

    However, the reduced cost base is not relevant for some types of CGT events. In these cases, see appendix 1 for the amounts to use for the particular CGT event.

    Attention

    Reduced cost base

    You cannot index a reduced cost base.

    End of attention

    Keeping records

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Keeping adequate records of all expenditure will help you correctly work out the amount of capital gain or capital loss you have made when a CGT event happens. It will also help to make sure you do not pay more CGT than is necessary.

    You must keep records of everything that affects your capital gains and capital losses. Penalties can apply if you do not keep the records for at least five years after the relevant CGT event. If you use information from those records in a later tax return, you may have to keep records for longer. If you have applied a net capital loss, you should generally keep your records of the CGT event that resulted in the loss until the end of any period of review for the income year in which the net capital loss is fully applied.

    For more information, see Taxation Determination TD 2007/2External Link – Income tax: should a taxpayer who has incurred a tax loss or made a net capital loss for an income year retain records relevant to the ascertainment of that loss only for the record retention period prescribed under income tax law?

    Keeping good records can help your beneficiaries reduce the impact of CGT after you die. If you leave an asset to another person, the asset may be subject to CGT when a CGT event happens to that asset in the future, for example, if your daughter (the beneficiary) sells the shares (the asset) you have left her in your will.

    What records do you need to keep?

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    You must keep records of every act, transaction, event or circumstance that may be relevant to working out whether you have made a capital gain or capital loss from a CGT event. It does not matter whether the CGT event has already happened or whether it may happen.

    The records must be in English (or be readily accessible or translatable into English) and must show:

    • the nature of the act, transaction, event or circumstance
    • the day it happened
    • who did the act or who were the parties to the transaction
    • how the act, transaction, event or circumstance is relevant to working out the capital gain or capital loss.

    The following are examples of records you may need to keep:

    • receipts of purchase or transfer
    • details of interest on money you borrowed relating to this asset
    • records of agent, accountant, legal and advertising costs
    • receipts for insurance costs, rates and land taxes
    • any market valuations
    • receipts for the cost of maintenance, repairs and modifications
    • accounts showing brokerage on shares.

    You should also keep records to establish whether you have claimed an income tax deduction for an item of expenditure. In many cases, if you have claimed a deduction for an amount, the expenditure may not be included in the cost base or reduced cost base of a CGT asset.

    Records relating to real estate

    Real estate can include the family home, vacant blocks of land, business premises, rental properties, holiday houses and hobby farms.

    Even though your family home is usually exempt, if you acquired it on or after 20 September 1985, try to keep all records relating to the home, just as you would for other items of real estate. If the home ceases to be fully exempt at some time in the future, you will need to know the full cost of the home so that you do not pay more CGT than necessary. If you do not have sufficient records, reconstructing them later could be difficult. See Real estate and main residence for details of when your home may not be fully exempt.

    Keep a copy of the purchase contract and all receipts for expenses relating to the purchase of the property, for example, stamp duty, legal fees, survey and valuation fees. Also keep all records relating to the CGT event and all relevant expenses, for example, the sale contract and records of legal fees and stamp duty.

    Keep a record of capital expenditure on improvements, costs of owning the property and capital expenditure on maintaining title or right to it that you incurred during your period of ownership. These costs may form part of the cost base in working out whether you have made a capital gain or capital loss at the time the CGT event happens.

    Capital expenditure on improvements may include building an extension, addition or improvement, including initial repairs.

    Examples of costs of owning real estate include interest, rates and land taxes, insurance premiums and cost of repairs or replacing broken items. You only include such costs if you acquired the CGT asset on or after 21 August 1991 and if you have not claimed, and cannot claim, a tax deduction for them.

    If the property is your home and you use it to produce income (for example, by renting out part or all of it), you will need to keep records of the period the home is producing income and the proportion of the home you have used to produce income.

    If, after 20 August 1996, you use your home for income-producing purposes for the first time, you will be taken to have acquired your home at that time for its market value. You will use this as your acquisition cost for the purpose of calculating a capital gain or capital loss at the time the CGT event happens. You will still need to keep details of expenses relating to your home after the date that it started producing income.

    Marriage or relationship breakdown has some information about records you may need to obtain from your spouse if your marriage or relationship has broken down and a CGT rollover applies on the transfer of real estate.

    Records relating to shares in companies and units in unit trusts

    Most of the records you need to keep regarding your disposal of shares in companies or units in unit trusts (including managed funds), will be given to you by the company, the unit trust manager or your stockbroker. It is important for you to keep everything they give you on your shares and units.

    These records will generally provide the following important information:

    • the date of purchase of the shares or units
    • the amount paid to purchase the shares or units
    • details of any non-assessable payments made to you during the time you owned the shares or units
    • the date and amount of any calls if shares were partly paid
    • the sale price if you sell them
    • any commissions paid to brokers when you buy or sell them.

    There are special CGT rules for certain shares and units which may affect the records you keep, for example, bonus shares and units, rights and options, and employee shares. See Investments in shares and units for more information.

    Records relating to bonus shares

    To be safe, if you have received any bonus shares on or after 20 September 1985, keep all the documents the company gives you.

    For any bonus shares issued before 1 July 1987, you need to know when the original shares were acquired. If you acquired them on or after 20 September 1985, you will also need to know what they cost. Flowchart 3.1 in appendix 3 summarises the different rules applying to the treatment of bonus shares.

    Keep a record of any amounts you paid to acquire the bonus shares and any amounts taxed as a dividend when they were issued.

    Records relating to inheriting an asset

    If you inherited an asset as a beneficiary of the estate of a person who died on or after 20 September 1985, you may need to obtain information from the executor or trustee.

    If the deceased person acquired the asset before 20 September 1985, or an asset passes to you as the trustee of a Special Disability Trust (irrespective of the date the deceased acquired the asset), you need to know the market value of the asset at the date of the person’s death and the amount of any relevant costs incurred by the executor or trustee. This is the amount that the asset is taken to have cost you. If the executor or trustee has a valuation of the asset, get a copy of that valuation report. Otherwise, you will need to get your own valuation.

    If the asset you inherit was acquired by the deceased person on or after 20 September 1985, you need to know full details of all relevant costs incurred by the deceased person and by the executor or trustee. Get those details from the executor or trustee.

    Inheriting a main residence

    If you inherit a house that was the deceased’s main residence, any capital gain on its subsequent disposal may be exempt. However, until the exemption is certain, you should keep records of relevant costs incurred by you, the deceased or their trustee or executor.

    You will not need to keep records of the deceased’s costs if:

    • you inherited the house after 20 August 1996
    • the house was the deceased’s main residence just before they died
    • the house was not being used to produce income at the time of death.

    In these circumstances, you will be taken to have acquired the house at its market value at the date of death. If the executor or trustee has a valuation of the asset, get a copy of that valuation report. Otherwise you will need to get your own valuation.

    Asset registers

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    You can choose to enter information from your CGT records into an asset register. If you keep an asset register, you may be able to discard records that you might otherwise need to keep for a long time.

    If you choose to keep an asset register, transfer the following information to it from the records you generally need to keep for CGT purposes:

    • the date the asset was acquired
    • the cost of the asset
    • a description, amount and date for each cost associated with the purchase of the asset, for example, stamp duty and legal fees
    • the date the CGT event happened to the asset
    • the capital proceeds received when the CGT event happened.

    This information must be certified by a registered tax agent or a person approved by the Commissioner.

    If you use an asset register, you must keep the documents from which you have transferred the information for five years from the date the relevant asset register entry is certified. You must keep the asset register entries for five years from the date the related CGT event happens. Keep the asset register for a longer period if you need to substantiate any carried forward net capital losses, for five years after any CGT event where you have applied any capital loss against capital gains.

    For more information about asset registers and who can certify them, see Taxation Ruling TR 2002/10External Link – Income tax: capital gains tax: asset register.

    End of find out more

    Exceptions

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    You do not need to keep records if, for any CGT event, a capital gain or capital loss is disregarded. For example, you do not need to keep records for exempt assets such as cars and motorcycles as the capital gain or loss is disregarded.

    It is never too late

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you acquired assets on or after 20 September 1985 and did not keep records, or your records have inadvertently been destroyed, you can still do something about it.

    If you bought real estate, your solicitor or real estate agent may have copies of most of the records you need. You should be able to get copies if you ask for them.

    If you made improvements to an investment property, for example, if you built an extension, then ask for a copy of the builder’s receipt for payment.

    If you bought shares in a company or units in a unit trust, your stockbroker or investment adviser may be able to give you the information you need.

    If you received an asset as a gift and you did not get a market valuation at the time, a professional valuer can tell you what its market value was at the relevant date.

    The main thing is to get as many details as possible so you can reconstruct your records. Make sure you keep sufficient records in the future.

    Trust distributions

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    This section explains how distributions from trusts (including managed funds) can affect your CGT position. Managed funds include property trusts, share trusts, equity trusts, growth trusts, imputation trusts and balanced trusts.

    Distributions from trusts can include different amounts but only the following types of amounts are relevant for CGT purposes:

    • distributions of all or a part of the trust's income where the trust’s net income for tax purposes includes a net capital gain,
    • distributions or other entitlements described as being referable to a specific capital gain or gains and
    • distributions of non-assessable amounts.

    Under recent law changes (described below) you will be treated as having made a capital gain or gains if you are 'specifically entitled' to all or part of a trust's capital gain and that capital gain is reflected in the trust's net income for tax purposes.

    Additionally, if there is an amount of a capital gain reflected in the net income of the trust for tax purposes to which no entity is specifically entitled, that amount will be proportionately assessed to beneficiaries in accordance with their 'adjusted Division 6 percentage' (which is based on their proportionate entitlement to certain income of the trust), or otherwise to the trustee.

    In certain circumstances where you would be treated as having made a capital gain but are unable to benefit from the gain within a set period, an eligible trustee may elect to be assessed on the capital gain on your behalf.

    Managed Investment Trusts (MIT) have a choice as to whether to apply these changes (see below). If you receive a distribution from a MIT that has not applied these changes, you will be treated as having made a capital gain or gains if the trust’s net income for tax purposes includes a net capital gain and you have been assessed on a share of the MIT’s net income for tax purposes, included in item 13 Partnerships and trusts on your tax return (supplementary section).

    Non-assessable payments mostly affect the cost base of units in a unit trust (including managed funds) but can in some cases create a capital gain. Non-assessable payments to beneficiaries of a discretionary trust will not give rise to capital gains.

    Attention

    New terms

    We may use some terms that are new to you. These words are explained in Definitions. Generally, they are also explained in detail in the section where they first appear.

    End of attention

    Trustees, including fund managers, may use different terms to describe the methods of calculation and other terms used in this guide. For example, they may use the term ‘non-discount gains’ when they refer to capital gains worked out using the indexation and 'other' methods.

    Law changes impacting capital gains made by a trust

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Legislation was enacted on 29 June 2011 that updates the trust taxation provisions in Division 6 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 (Division 6) to address particular uncertainties in the law following the Bamford High Court decision (the new trust provisions).

    The new trust provisions introduce new anti-avoidance rules and measures to generally allow the streaming of franked distributions and capital gains to beneficiaries for tax purposes. They apply from the 2010–11 income year.

    The anti-avoidance rules do not apply to the trustee of a managed investment trust (MIT) or an entity treated in the same way as a MIT (for the purposes of Division 275). However, such a trustee can choose to apply the streaming measures for the 2010–11 and 2011–12 income years (or just to the 2011–12 income year).

    The new trust provisions modify the rules for trusts with net capital gains (Subdivision 115-C of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997) and the rules for franked distributions received through a trust (Subdivision 207-B of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997).

    The amendments ensure that, where permitted by the trust deed, the capital gains of a trust can be effectively streamed to beneficiaries for tax purposes, by making them 'specifically entitled' to those gains. Generally, a beneficiary will be considered specifically entitled to an amount of a capital gain if the beneficiary has received (or can reasonably be expected to receive) an amount referrable to that gain.

    A beneficiary specifically entitled to a capital gain will generally be assessed in respect of that gain, regardless of whether the benefit they receive or are expected to receive is income or capital of the trust. That is, unlike the law that applied prior to the amendments, under the new trust provisions, a beneficiary may be assessed based on a specific entitlement to a capital gain of the trust, even though they do not have a present entitlement to income of the trust estate.

    Capital gains to which no beneficiary is specifically entitled will be allocated proportionately to beneficiaries based on their present entitlement to income of the trust estate (excluding amounts to which any entity is specifically entitled). This proportion is known as the beneficiary's 'adjusted Division 6 percentage'. If there is some income to which no beneficiary is entitled (apart from capital gains and/or franked distributions to which any entity is specifically entitled) the trustee may be assessed under section 99 or 99A of the ITAA 1936.

    The new trust provisions will also allow the trustee of a resident trust to choose to be assessed on a capital gain, provided no beneficiary has received or benefitted from any amount relating to the gain during the income year or within two months of the end of the income year. This is similar to (and will replace) the choice that was available to the trustee of a testamentary trust under the law prior to the amendments, but is not limited to those trustees. This allows the trustee of a trust to choose to pay tax on behalf of a beneficiary who is unable to immediately benefit from the gain.

    Capital gains made by a trust

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Exclude net capital gains from item 13

    If you are a beneficiary of a trust, you may be entitled to (or may have received) an amount described as a share of the trust's net capital gain. However, you do not include this amount at item 13 Partnerships and trusts on your tax return (supplementary section). Instead, you are treated as having made an extra capital gain (or capital gains) following the steps described below.

    Attention

    Item 13 on the tax return for individuals (supplementary section)

    Question 13 in the Tax return for individuals (supplementary section) 2013 tells you to exclude net capital gains from the amount of trust income you write at U item 13 on your tax return (supplementary section). In your statement of distribution or advice, the trust should state your share of the trust’s net capital gain. [Only exclude so much of the trust's net capital gain that would otherwise form part of your share of the trust income.]

    End of attention
    For beneficiaries of trusts subject to the new law
    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Determine your share of the capital gain of the trust

    You will need to determine whether you have a share of each capital gain made by the trust that has been included in the trust's net income for tax purposes. For every capital gain you have a share of, your statement of distribution or advice from the trust should advise you of:

    • your share of that gain
    • how much of the net income of the trust for tax purposes relates to each gain (or what is the 'attributable gain' to which your share relates) and
    • the type of capital gain to which your share relates and the method used by the trustee to calculate it (including any CGT discount or small business concessions applied).

    Your share of a capital gain is any amount of the capital gain to which you are 'specifically entitled' plus your 'adjusted Division 6 percentage' share of any amount of the capital gain to which no beneficiary is 'specifically entitled'.

    See the definitions of Specifically entitled and Adjusted Division 6 percentage for further information on how to determine these amounts.

    End of find out more

    Divide by the total capital gain

    That amount is then divided by the total capital gain to give you your ‘fraction’ of the total capital gain.

    Multiply your fraction of the capital gain by the trust's taxable income relating to the capital gain

    Your fraction is then multiplied by the net income for tax purposes of the trust that relates to the capital gain. The result is your ‘attributable gain’.

    In certain circumstances where the trust's net capital gain and total net franked distributions exceed the net income of the trust for tax purposes, the amount of the trust's taxable income relating to the capital gain is rateably reduced. This ensures that beneficiaries and the trustee cannot be assessed on more than the total net income of the trust.

    Extra capital gains you are taken to have made

    If you are a beneficiary who is taken to have an 'attributable gain' (your share of a trust’s capital gain included in its net income for tax purposes), you are taken to have made extra capital gains in addition to any other capital gains you may have made from your own CGT events.

    ***** These extra capital gains are taken into account in working out your net capital gain for the income year. You include them at step 2 in part B or part C.

    In order to work out the amount of extra capital gains that are taken into account in working out your own net capital gain, you will need to know the method used by the trustee in calculating the trust’s capital gain/s that were included in the trust’s net capital gain. Your statement of distribution or advice should show this information.

    If you are a unit holder in a managed fund, the trustee or manager will generally advise you of your share of the trust’s net capital gain, together with details of your share of any other income distributed to you.

    In other cases, the trustee may have advised you what your share is or you may need to contact them to obtain details.

    Trust distributions to which the CGT discount or the small business 50% active asset reduction apply

    Your 'attributable gain' is then grossed up as appropriate for any CGT concessions (the general CGT discount or the small business 50 per cent reduction) applied by the trustee to that capital gain. You have an extra capital gain equal to the grossed-up amount.

    Where the trustee reduced the capital gain by the CGT discount or the small business 50% active asset reduction, you need to gross up your 'attributable gain' by multiplying it by two. This grossed-up amount is an extra capital gain.

    You multiply by four your share of any capital gain that the trust has reduced by both the CGT discount and the small business 50% active asset reduction. This grossed-up amount is an extra capital gain.

    If the capital gain has not been reduced by either the CGT discount or the small business 50% active asset reduction, then your 'attributable gain' is an extra capital gain.

    You are then able to reduce your extra capital gains by any current or prior year capital losses that you have, and then apply any relevant discounts to work out your own net capital gain.

    Attention

    No double taxation

    You are not taxed twice on these extra capital gains because you did not include your capital gains from trusts at item 13 on you tax return (supplementary section).

    End of attention

    Example 16: Applying the new trust provisions

    Step 1: determine the beneficiary’s share of the capital gain of the trust

    The Cropper Trust generated $100 of rent and a $500 capital gain (which was a discount capital gain). The trust also had a capital loss of $100. The trust deed does not define ‘income’ and therefore capital gains do not form part of the trust income. As a result, the income of the trust estate is $100 (being an amount equal to the rent), whereas the net income of the trust for tax purposes is $300. The $300 net income for tax purposes comprises the $200 net capital gain (which is the $500 capital gain less the $100 capital loss, reduced by the 50 per cent CGT discount) plus the $100 rent income.

    The trustee resolves to distribute $200 related to the capital gain (after absorbing the capital loss) to Shane and the $100 of rent to Andrea.

    Shane is specifically entitled to 50 per cent of the $500 capital gain because he can reasonably be expected to receive the economic benefit of 50 per cent ($200) of the $400 capital gain remaining after accounting for the $100 capital loss. Shane’s share of the capital gain is $250 (50 per cent of the $500 capital gain).

    Andrea’s share of the capital gain is also $250 because, being entitled to all of the $100 income of the trust (none of the capital gain being treated as trust income), she has an adjusted Division 6 percentage of 100 per cent and there is $250 of the $500 capital gain to which no one is specifically entitled.

    Step 2: divide by the total capital gain

    Shane divides his share of the capital gain ($250) by the total capital gain ($500) and therefore has a fraction share of 1/2 of the capital gain.

    Andrea divides her share of the capital gain ($250) by the total capital gain ($500) and therefore also has a fraction share of 1/2 of the capital gain.

    Step 3: multiply the beneficiary’s fraction of the capital gain by the trust’s taxable income relating to the capital gain

    The net income of the trust for tax purposes relating to the capital gain is $200.

    Shane’s attributable gain is $100 ($200 x 1/2).

    Andrea’s attributable gain is $100 ($200 × 1/2).

    Step 4: gross up the amount for CGT discounts applied by the trustee

    As was the case under the former provisions, Shane is required to double his attributable gain of $100 to an extra capital gain of $200 because the trustee had applied the 50 per cent CGT discount.

    Andrea similarly doubles her attributable gain to $200 which is her extra capital gain.

    Both Shane and Andrea will take their extra capital gain of $200 into account in working out their own net capital gain at 18. Shane and Andrea are individuals entitled to claim the 50% CGT discount. Neither have other capital gains or capital losses of their own to apply against their extra capital gains. Therefore, after applying the 50% CGT discount to their $200 extra capital gain, they will have made a net capital gain of ($200 extra capital gain x 50% = $100). They will write $100 at A item 18 Capital gains on their tax returns (supplementary section). They also write $200 (which is $100 grossed up) at H item 18.

    Note that Shane and Andrea's statement of distribution or advice from the trust advised each of them that the trust had made a capital gain of $500, that only $200 of this had been included in the net income of the trust estate for tax purposes, that the 50% discount had been applied and that their share of the gain was $250. Alternatively, it could have advised them that they each had an extra capital gain of $200 that was a discount capital gain.

    End of example

    Example 17: Distribution where the trust claimed concessions

    Serge is the sole beneficiary in the Shadows Unit Trust. His statement of distribution or advice from the trust shows that his 100% share of the net income of the Shadows Unit Trust for income tax purposes was $2,000. The $2,000 includes a net capital gain of $250 (made of a $1,000 capital gain that was reduced by the CGT discount and the small business 50% active asset reduction).

    His statement advises that he has a $1,000 (100%) share of the $1,000 capital gain.

    Because he has a 100% share of the capital gain, Serge will have an 'attributable gain' of $250 (that is, the whole of the net income of the trust estate for tax purposes that relates to the gain).

    Due to the application of the CGT discount and the small business 50% active asset reduction, Serge then grosses up his 'attributable gain' of $250 by multiplying it by 4 to $1,000 which is his extra capital gain.

    Serge has also made a capital loss of $100 from the sale of shares.

    He calculates his own net capital gain as follows:

    Serge’s extra capital gain (that is, his $250 attributable gain x 4)

    $1,000

    Deduct capital losses

    $100

    Capital gains before applying discounts

    $900

    Apply the CGT discount of 50%

    $450

    Apply the 50% active asset reduction

    $225

    Net capital gain

    $225

     

    Serge will write $1,000 at H item 18 on his tax return (supplementary section), which is his total current year capital gain. His net capital gain to be written at A item 18 on his tax return (supplementary section) is $225. He will write a trust distribution of $1,750 ($2,000 – $250) at U item 13 on his tax return (supplementary section).

    End of example
    Attention

    Applying the concessions

    Remember that you must use the same method as the trust to calculate your capital gain.

    This means you cannot apply the CGT discount to capital gains distributed to you from the trust calculated using the indexation method or 'other' method.

    Also, you can only apply the small business 50% active asset reduction to grossed-up capital gains to which the trust applied that concession.

    End of attention
    Investors in Managed Funds not subject to the new trust provisions
    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you are a unit holder in a managed fund that is not subject to the new trust provisions and have received a distribution from a trust whose net income for tax purposes includes a net capital gain, you take your share of that net capital gain into account in working out your own net capital gain for the year, to the extent that it does not exceed the overall net amount of your share of the trust's net income for tax purposes (see examples 18 and 19).

    Note that if your statement shows that your share of the trust’s net capital gain is more than the overall net amount of your share of the trust’s net income for tax purposes, then there is a limit on the amount of the capital gain component excluded from U item 13 on your tax return (supplementary section). In this situation you cannot exclude an amount greater than the overall net amount of your share of the trust’s net income for tax purposes (see examples 18 and 19). The amount of your share of the trust’s net capital gain actually excluded from the amount at U item 13 is used in working out your capital gain. If you receive a distribution from more than one trust, this applies to each distribution.

    Trust distributions to which the CGT discount or the small business 50% active asset reduction apply

    If you are a unit holder in a managed fund your statement of distribution or advice from the trust should tell you your share of each capital gain that was included in the trusts net capital gain. It should also advise you whether any discounts or reductions were applied by the trustee in determining the amount of the capital gain.

    If you have a share of a trust’s net capital gain you are taken to have made extra capital gains in addition to any other capital gains you may have made from your own CGT events.

    These extra capital gains are taken into account in working out your net capital gain for the income year. You include them at step 2 in part B or part C.

    You need to know whether the trustee applied any discounts or reductions in calculating the capital gain to which your share relates in order to work out the correct amount to include in your own net capital gain calculation.

    Where the trustee reduced one or more capital gains by the CGT discount or the small business 50% active asset reduction, you need to gross up your share of any such capital gain by multiplying it by two. This grossed-up amount is your extra capital gain that you include in your own net capital gain calculation.

    You multiply by four your share of any capital gain from a trust that the trustee has reduced by both the CGT discount and the small business 50% active asset reduction. This grossed-up amount is your extra capital gain that you include in your own net capital gain calculation.

    If your share of a capital gain from a trust is attributable to a capital gain that the trustee has not reduced by one of these concessions, that amount is your extra capital gain. You include this amount in your own net capital gain calculation.

    This calculation lets you reduce your extra capital gains by any current or prior year capital losses that you have, and then apply any relevant discounts to work out your own net capital gain (see example 19 below)

    Attention

    No double taxation

    You are not taxed twice on these extra capital gains because you did not include your capital gains from trusts at item 13 on you tax return (supplementary section).

    End of attention

    Example 18: Capital gain greater than share of trust net income and capital gain was discounted

    Daniel’s statement of distribution or advice from a Managed Fund shows that his share of the net income of that trust for tax purposes was $7,000.

    This is made up of his $3,000 proportionate share of the trust’s non-primary production loss and his $10,000 proportionate share of the trust’s net capital gain to which the trust applied the 50% CGT discount. Daniel also made a $2,000 capital loss during the year on the sale of some shares. He does not have any other trust distributions for the year.

    Daniel will need to write a zero at item 13 Partnerships and Trusts on his tax return. He takes $14,000 (that is, the $7,000 remaining of his share of the capital gain from the trust grossed up) into account in working out his net capital gain at item 18. Therefore, after deducting the capital losses from the grossed up capital gain he is taken to have made ($14,000 – $2,000 = $12,000), he applies the 50% CGT discount ($12,000 × 50% = $6,000) and writes $6,000 at A item 18 Capital gains on his tax return (supplementary section). He also writes $14,000 ($7,000 grossed up) at H item 18.

    End of example

    Example 19: Capital gain greater than share of trust net income and capital gain was not discounted

    Debra’s statement of distribution or advice from a Managed Fund shows that her share of the net income of that trust for tax purposes was $2,000.

    This is made up of her $5,000 proportionate share of the trust’s primary production loss, her $2,000 proportionate share of the trust’s non-primary production income and her $5,000 proportionate share of the trust’s net capital gain. (The trust’s net capital gain does not include any discounted gains.)

    At item 13 Partnerships and Trusts on her tax return (supplementary section), Debra will write $5,000 loss from primary production at L and $5,000 non-primary production income at U (that is, $2,000 non-primary production income plus sufficient net capital gain [$3,000] to offset the loss from primary production).

    Assuming Debra has no other capital gains or capital losses, she will write $2,000 ($5,000 – $3,000) at H and A item 18 Capital gains on her tax return (supplementary section).

    End of example

    Non-assessable payments from a trust

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Trusts often make non-assessable payments to beneficiaries.

    If a profit made by the trust is not assessable, any part of that profit distributed to a beneficiary will also be non-assessable in most cases, for example, a share of a profit made on the sale of property acquired by the trust before 20 September 1985.

    However, if you receive non-assessable payments from a trust, you may need to make cost base adjustments to your units or trust interest. Those adjustments will affect the amount of any capital gain or capital loss you make on the unit or interest, for example, when you sell it. If non-assessable payments exceed your cost base, you may also make a capital gain equal to the excess in the year the excess is paid to you.

    Note that the non-assessable payments may be over a number of years and once the cost base is reduced to zero the excess is a capital gain in the year the excess arises.

    Non-assessable payments from a managed fund to a unit holder are common and may be shown on your statement from the fund as:

    • tax-free amounts
    • CGT-concession amounts
    • tax-exempted amounts
    • tax-deferred amounts.
    Attention

    If you are a beneficiary in a trust which is subject to the new trust provisions relating to 'streaming' of capital gains and franked distributions, even if you are distributed an amount which is described as the CGT concession amount, you may be taken to have made a capital gain which you will need to include in your own net capital gain calculation.

    For more information see Improving the taxation of trust income.

    End of attention

    You may need to adjust the cost base and reduced cost base of your units depending on the kind of non-assessable payment you received.

    Tax-free amounts relate to certain tax concessions received by the fund which enable it to pay greater distributions to its unit holders. If your statement shows any tax-free amounts, you adjust the reduced cost base (but not your cost base) of your units by these amounts. Payments of amounts associated with building allowances which were made before 1 July 2001 were treated as tax-free amounts.

    CGT-concession amounts relate to the CGT discount component of any actual distribution. Such amounts do not affect your cost base and reduced cost base if they were received after 30 June 2001. A CGT-concession amount received before 1 July 2001 is taken off the cost base and reduced cost base.

    Tax-exempted amounts are generally made up of:

    • exempt income of the fund
    • amounts on which the fund has already paid tax, or
    • income you had to repay to the fund.

    Such amounts do not affect your cost base and reduced cost base.

    Tax-deferred amounts are other non-assessable amounts, including indexation received by the fund on its capital gains and accounting differences in income. You adjust the cost base and reduced cost base of your units by these amounts. Payments associated with building allowances which are made on or after 1 July 2001 are treated as tax-deferred amounts.

    If the tax-deferred amount is greater than the cost base of your units, you include the excess as a capital gain. You can use the indexation method if you bought your units before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999.

    Attention

    Capital loss

    You cannot make a capital loss from a non-assessable payment.

    As a result of recent stapling arrangements, some investors in managed funds have received units which have a very low cost base. The payment of certain non-assessable amounts in excess of the cost base of the units will result in these investors making a capital gain.

    Non-assessable payments under a demerger

    If you receive a non-assessable payment under an eligible demerger, you do not deduct the payment from the cost base and the reduced cost base of your units or trust interest. Instead you adjust your cost base and reduced cost base according to the demerger rules.

    You may make a capital gain on the non-assessable payment if it exceeds the cost base of your original unit or trust interest, although you will be able to choose a CGT rollover.

    An eligible demerger is one that happens on or after 1 July 2002 and satisfies certain tests. The trust making the non-assessable payment will normally advise unit or trust interest holders if this is the case.

    For more information about demergers, see Investments in shares and units.

    End of attention

    Generally, you make any adjustment to the cost base and reduced cost base of your unit or trust interest at the end of the income year. However, if some other CGT event happens to the unit or trust interest during the year (for example, you sell your units), you must adjust the cost base and reduced cost base just before the time of that CGT event. The amount of the adjustment is based on the amount of non-assessable payments paid to you up to the date of sale. You use the adjusted cost base and reduced cost base to work out your capital gain or capital loss (see How to work out your capital gain or capital loss for more information).

    The cost base and reduced cost base adjustments are more complex if you deducted capital losses from a grossed-up capital gain where a capital gain made by the trust was reduced by the small business 50% active asset reduction. If this applies to you, you may need to seek advice from us on how to make the adjustments.

    If the tax-deferred amount is greater than the cost base of your unit or trust interest, you include the excess as a capital gain. You can use the indexation method if you bought your units or trust interest before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999. However, if you do so, you cannot use the discount method to work out your capital gain when you later sell the units or trust interest.

    Example 20: Bob has received a non-assessable amount

    Bob owns units in OZ Investments Fund (a managed fund which has not elected to be subject to the new trust provisions) which distributed income to him for the 2012–13 income year. The fund gave him a statement showing his distribution meant that his share of the trust’s net capital gain included:

    • $100 calculated using the discount method (grossed-up amount $200)
    • $75 calculated using the indexation method
    • $28 calculated using the 'other' method.

    These capital gains add up to $203.

    The statement shows Bob’s distribution did not include a tax-free amount, but it did include:

    • $105 tax-deferred amount.

    From his records, Bob knows that the cost base and reduced cost base of his units are $1,200 and $1,050 respectively.

    Bob has no other capital gains or capital losses for the 2012–13 income year and no unapplied net capital losses from earlier years.

    The following steps show how Bob works out the amounts to write on his tax return.

    Step 1
    As Bob has a share of a capital gain which the fund reduced under the CGT discount of 50% (so that his share was $100), he includes the grossed-up amount of his share ($200) in his total current year capital gains.

    Step 2
    Bob adds the grossed-up amount to his share of the trust’s capital gains calculated using the indexation method and 'other' method to work out his total current year capital gains:

    $200 + $75 + $28 = $303

    Step 3
    As Bob has no other capital gains or capital losses, and he must use the discount method for the capital gains calculated using the discount method from the trust, his net capital gain is equal to his share of the trust’s net capital gain for tax purposes ($203).

    Step 4
    Bob completes item 18 on his tax return (supplementary section) as follows:

    18 Capital gains

    You must also print X in the Yes box at G if you had an amount of capital gains from a trust

    Did you have a capital gains tax event during the year?

    G No Yes X

    Have you applied an exemption or rollover?

    M No X Yes Code

     

    Net capital gain

    A 203

    Total current year capital gains

    H 303

    Net capital losses carried forward to later income years

    V

     

    Bob must print X in the No box at M and leave the code blank because he did not apply an exemption or rollover.

    Records Bob needs to keep
    The tax-deferred amount Bob received is not included in his income or his capital gains, but it affects the cost base and reduced cost base of his units in OZ Investments Fund for future income years.

    Cost base

    $1,200

    less tax-deferred amount

    $105

    New cost base

    $1,095

    Reduced cost base

    $1,050

    less tax-deferred amount

    $105

    New reduced cost base

    $945

     

    End of example

    Example 21: Ilena’s capital loss is greater than her non-discounted capital gain

    Ilena invested in XYZ Managed Fund (a managed fund which has not elected to be subject to the new trust provisions). The fund made a distribution to Ilena for the year ending 30 June 2013 and gave her a statement that shows her distribution meant that her share of the trust’s net capital gain included:

    • $65 discounted capital gain, and
    • $90 non-discounted capital gain.

    The statement shows Ilena’s distribution also included:

    • $30 tax-deferred amount
    • $35 tax-free amount.

    Ilena has no other capital gains, but made a capital loss of $100 on some shares she sold during the year. Ilena has no unapplied net capital losses from earlier years.

    From her records, Ilena knows the cost base and reduced cost base of her units are $5,000 and $4,700 respectively.

    Ilena has to treat the capital gain component of her share of the fund’s net income for tax purposes as if she made the capital gain. To complete her tax return, Ilena must identify this capital gain component and work out her net capital gain.

    The following steps show how Ilena works out the amount to write at H item 18 on her tax return (supplementary section).

    Step 1
    As Ilena has a share of a capital gain which the fund reduced by the CGT discount of 50% (her discounted share being $65), she must gross up her share of this capital gain. She does this by multiplying the amount of her share of the discounted capital gain by two:

    $65 x 2 = $130

    Step 2
    Ilena adds her share of the trust’s grossed-up and non-discounted capital gains to work out her total current year capital gains:

    $130 + $90 = $220

    She writes her total current year capital gains ($220) at H item 18 on her tax return (supplementary section).

    Step 3
    After Ilena has grossed up her share of the fund’s discounted capital gain, she subtracts her capital losses from her capital gains.

    Ilena can choose which capital gains she subtracts the capital losses from first. In her case, she gets the better result if she:

    1

    subtracts as much as possible of her capital losses (which were $100) from her non-discounted capital gains ($90).
    $90 – $90 = $0 (non-discounted capital gains)

    2

    subtracts her remaining capital losses after step 1 ($10) from her discounted capital gains ($130).
    $130- $10 = $120 (discounted capital gains)

    3

    applies the CGT discount to her remaining discounted capital gains:
    ($120 x 50%) = $60 (discounted capital gains)

     

    Step 4
    Finally, Ilena adds up the capital gains remaining to arrive at her net capital gain:

    • $0 (non-discounted) + $60 (discounted) = $60 net capital gain.

    Ilena completes item 18 on her tax return (supplementary section) as follows:

    18 Capital gains

    You must also print X in the Yes box at G if you received a distribution of a capital gain from a trust

    Did you have a capital gains tax event during the year?

    G No Yes X

    Have you applied an exemption or rollover?

    M No X Yes Code

     

    Net capital gain

    A 60

    Total current year capital gains

    H 220

    Net capital losses carried forward to later income years

    V

     

    Ilena must print X in the No box at M and leave the code blank. The trust applied the exemption or rollover and will need to report that on its trust return.

    Records Ilena needs to keep

    The tax-deferred and tax-free amounts Ilena received are not included in her income or her capital gain, but the tax-deferred amount affects the cost base and reduced cost base of her units in XYZ Managed Fund for future income years. The tax-free amount affects her reduced cost base.

    Ilena reduces the cost base and reduced cost base of her units as follows:

    Cost base

    $5,000

    less tax-deferred amount

    $30

    New cost base

    $4,970

    Reduced cost base

    $4,700

    less (tax-deferred amount + tax-free amount)
    ($30 + $35)

    $65

    New reduced cost base

    $4,635

     

    End of example

    Investments in shares and units

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    This section explains your CGT obligations if you sold or otherwise disposed of any shares or units in a unit trust (including a managed fund) in the 2012–13 income year. It also explains what happens when you have a CGT event under a demerger. For information about distributions from a unit trust (other than under a demerger) in the 2012–13 income year, see Trust distributions.

    Attention

    Managed fund

    A managed fund is a unit trust. Where we refer to a unit trust in this guide we are also referring to a managed fund.

    End of attention

    How capital gains tax affects shares and units

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    For CGT purposes, shares in a company or units in a unit trust are treated in the same way as any other assets.

    As a general rule, if you acquired any shares or units on or after 20 September 1985, you may have to pay tax on any capital gain you make when a CGT event happens to them. This would usually be when you sell or otherwise dispose of them. It also includes where you redeem units in a managed fund by switching them from one fund to another. In these cases, CGT event A1 happens. There is a list of all CGT events at appendix 1.

    Profits on the sale of shares held in carrying on a business of share trading are included as ordinary income rather than as capital gains. For more information, see Carrying on a business of share trading. In addition, if the TOFA rules apply to you and you have elected to have certain tax-timing methods apply, gains and losses from trading of shares and units will be brought to account under those rules rather than as capital gains or capital losses. For more information about the TOFA rules, see Guide to the taxation of financial arrangements (TOFA) rules.

    Attention

    New terms

    We may use some terms that are new to you. These words are explained in Definitions. Generally, they are also explained in detail in the section where they first appear.

    End of attention

    A CGT event might happen to shares even if a change in their ownership is involuntary, for example, if the company in which you hold shares is taken over or merges with another company. This may result in a capital gain or capital loss.

    This section also deals with the receipt of non-assessable payments from a company (CGT event G1) while Trust distributions deals with non-assessable payments from a trust (CGT event E4). If you own shares in a company that has been placed in liquidation or administration, CGT event G3 explains how you can choose to make a capital loss when the liquidator or administrator declares the shares (or other financial instruments) worthless.

    There are a number of special CGT rules if you receive such things as bonus shares, bonus units, rights, options or non-assessable payments from a company or trust. Special rules also apply if you buy convertible notes or participate in an employee share scheme or a dividend reinvestment plan.

    The rest of this section explains these rules and has examples showing how they work in practice. The flowcharts at appendix 3 will also help you work out whether the special rules apply to you.

    If you need more information about how other income tax provisions affect your share investments, see You and your shares 2013 (NAT 2632).

    End of find out more

    Identifying shares or units sold

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Sometimes taxpayers own shares or units that they may have acquired at different times. This can happen as people decide to increase their investment in a particular company or unit trust. A common question people ask when they dispose of only part of their investment is how to identify the particular shares or units they have disposed of.

    This can be very important because shares or units bought at different times may have different amounts included in their cost. In calculating the capital gain or capital loss when disposing of only part of an investment, you need to be able to identify which ones you have disposed of. Also, when you dispose of any shares or units you acquired before 20 September 1985, any capital gain or capital loss you make is generally disregarded.

    If you have the relevant records (for example, share certificates), you may be able to identify which particular shares or units you have disposed of. In other cases, the Commissioner will accept your selection of the identity of shares disposed of.

    Alternatively, you may wish to use a ‘first in, first out’ basis where you treat the first shares or units you bought as being the first you disposed of.

    In limited circumstances, we will also accept an average cost method to determine the cost of the shares disposed of. You can only use this average cost method when:

    • the shares are in the same company
    • the shares are acquired on the same day
    • the shares have identical rights and obligations, and
    • you are not required to use market value for cost base purposes.

    Example 22: Identifying when shares or units were acquired

    Boris bought 1,000 shares in WOA Ltd on 1 July 1997. He bought another 3,000 shares in the company on 1 July 2002.

    In December 2002, WOA Ltd issued Boris with a CHESS statement for his 4,000 shares. When he sold 1,500 of the shares on 1 January 2013, he was not sure whether they were the shares he bought in 2002 or whether they included the shares bought in 1997.

    Because Boris could not identify when he bought the particular shares he sold, he decided to use the ‘first in, first out’ method and nominated the 1,000 shares bought in 1997 plus 500 of the shares bought in 2002.

    End of example

    Demutualisation of life insurance and general insurance companies

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you hold a policy in a life insurance company or a general insurance company that demutualises, you may be subject to CGT either at the time of the demutualisation or when you sell your shares (or another CGT event happens).

    A company demutualises when it changes its membership interests to shares, for example, AMP, IOOF and NRMA. There are similar rules if you are a member of a non-insurance organisation that demutualises.

    The insurance company may give you an option either to keep your share entitlement or to take cash by selling the shares under contract through an entity set up by the company (‘share sale facility’).

    If it is an Australian insurance company and you choose to keep the shares, you will not be subject to CGT until you eventually sell them or another CGT event happens. However, if you elect to sell your share entitlement to the company and take cash, you need to include any capital gain on your tax return in the income year in which you entered into the contract to sell the shares, even though you may not receive the cash until a later income year.

    The demutualising company will write to all potential ‘shareholders' and advise them of the acquisition cost in each instance, sometimes referred to as the ‘embedded value'. Even though you did not pay anything to acquire the shares, they have a value that is used as the cost base and reduced cost base for CGT purposes.

    If you sell your shares before the insurance company is listed on the stock exchange and you make a capital loss, you disregard the loss.

    If you hold a policy in an overseas insurance company that demutualises, you may be subject to CGT at the time of the demutualisation. Phone us for advice if this applies to you.

    Demutualisation of private health insurers

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The law relating to the CGT treatment of policy holders of health insurers who receive cash or shares when their health insurer demutualises has been changed. The changes took effect from 1 July 2007.

    If you hold or held a policy of a private health insurer that converts from a not for profit insurer to a profit insurer by demutualising, you disregard capital gains and losses you make from a CGT event happening to your interest or other right you have or had in the insurer.

    If you receive shares or rights to acquire shares as a result of the demutualisation of your private health insurer you will be taken for CGT purposes to have acquired each share or right at the time it is issued. The first element of the cost base or reduced cost base is equal to the market value of that share or right on the day they are issued.

    Any sale of the shares or rights will be a CGT event that may give rise to a capital gain or capital loss in the income year in which you enter into the contract of sale. This includes when the shares are sold through the sale facility.

    If you receive a cash payment under the demutualisation that is not as a result of the sale of the shares or rights you will not make a capital gain or loss.

    Demutualisation of friendly societies

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The law relating to the CGT treatment of policy holders of friendly societies who receive cash or shares when their friendly society demutualises has recently been changed. The changes take effect from 1 July 2008.

    If you hold or held a policy of a friendly society that demutualised from a not-for-profit friendly society to a profit friendly society, you may be able to disregard your capital gain or loss from the CGT event. You can disregard capital gains and losses you make from a CGT event happening to your interest or other right you have or had in the friendly society except where you receive an amount of money. Your friendly society should advise you whether you realise a capital gain or capital loss.

    If you received only shares, or rights to acquire shares, as a result of the demutualisation of your friendly society, we consider for CGT purposes that you acquired each share or right at the time it was issued.

    Your friendly society should advise you of the cost base of the shares or rights to acquire shares. The cost base, or reduced cost base, is equal to the:

    • market value of the health insurance business and
    • embedded value of the life insurance business and any other business of the friendly society.

    Selling the shares or rights (through the sale facility or otherwise) will be a CGT event that may give rise to a capital gain or capital loss in the income year in which you enter into the contract of sale.

    Share buy-backs

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    As a shareholder, you may have received an offer from a company to buy back some or all of your shares in the company. If you disposed of shares back to the company under a share buy-back arrangement, you may have made a capital gain or capital loss from that CGT event.

    You compare the capital proceeds with your cost base and reduced cost base to work out whether you have made a capital gain or capital loss.

    The time you make the capital gain or capital loss will depend on the conditions of the particular buy-back offer. It may be the time you lodge your application to participate in the buy-back or, if it is a conditional offer of buy-back, the time you accept the offer.

    If shares in a company:

    • are not bought back by the company in the ordinary course of business of a stock exchange, for example, the company writes to shareholders offering to buy their shares (commonly referred to as ‘off-market share buy-back’), and
    • the buy-back price is less than what the market value of the share would have been if the buy-back hadn’t occurred and was never proposed
    • then the capital proceeds are taken to be the market value the share would have been if the buy-back hadn’t occurred and was never proposed minus the amount of any dividend paid under the buy-back. In this situation, the company may provide you with that market value or, if the company obtained a class ruling from us, you can find out the amount at www.ato.gov.au/cgtExternal Link

    Under other off-market buy-backs where a dividend is paid as part of the buy-back, the amount paid excluding the dividend is your capital proceeds for the share.

    Example 23: Buy-back

    Sam bought 4,500 shares in Company A in January 1994 at a cost of $5 per share. In February 2013, Sam applied to participate in a buy-back offer to dispose of 675 shares (15%). Company A approved a buy-back of 10% (450) of the shares on 15 June 2013. The company sent Sam a cheque on 5 July 2013 for $4,050 (450 shares × $9). No part of the payment is a dividend.

    Sam works out his capital gain for 2012–13 as follows:

    If he chooses to use the indexation method:

    Capital proceeds

    $4,050

    Cost base 450 shares x $5
    ($2,250 x 1.118 including indexation)

    $2,515

    Capital gain

    $1,535

     

    If he chooses to use the discount method:

    Capital proceeds

    $4,050

    Cost base

    $2,250

    Capital gain (before applying any discount)

    $1,800

     

    Sam has no capital losses to apply against this capital gain and decides that the discount method will provide him with the better result. He takes $900 ($1,800 × 50%) into account in working out his net capital gain for the year.

    End of example

    Example 24: Off-market buy-back including dividend

    Ranjini bought 10,000 shares in Company M in January 2003 at a cost of $6 per share, including brokerage.

    In January 2013, the company wrote to its shareholders advising them it was offering to buy back 10% of their shares for $9.60 each. The buy-back price was to include a franked dividend of $1.40 per share (and each dividend was to carry a franking credit of $0.60).

    Ranjini applied to participate in the buy-back to sell 1,000 of her shares.

    Company M approved the buy-back on 1 May 2013 on the terms anticipated in its earlier letter to shareholders.

    The market value of Company M shares at the time of the buy-back (if the buy-back did not occur and was never proposed) was $10.20.

    Ranjini received a cheque for $9,600 (1,000 shares × $9.60) on 8 June 2013.

    Because it was an off-market share buy-back and the buy-back price was less than what the market value of the share would have been if the buy-back hadn’t occurred, Ranjini works out her capital gain for the 2012–13 year as follows.

    Capital proceeds:

    Market value

    $10.20

    less dividend

    $1.40

     

    $8.80 x 1,000 shares

    $8,800

    Cost base:

    $6 x 1,000 shares

    $6,000

    Capital gain (before applying any discount)

    $2,800

     

    Ranjini takes her capital gain into account in completing item 18 on her tax return (supplementary section). She also includes her dividend at item 11 on her tax return ($1,400 at T and $600 at U).

    End of example

    Shares in a company in liquidation or administration

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If a company is placed in liquidation or administration, company law restricts the transfer of shares in the company. This means that, in the absence of special CGT rules, you may not be able to realise a capital loss on shares that have become worthless unless you declare a trust over them.

    In certain circumstances, you can choose to realise a capital loss on worthless shares before dissolution (if you acquired the shares on or after 20 September 1985). This applies if you own shares in a company and a liquidator or administrator declares in writing that there is no likelihood you will receive any further distribution in the course of winding up the company. A liquidator’s declaration can still be made after you receive a distribution during the winding up.

    Financial instruments relating to a company (not just shares) can also be declared worthless by a liquidator or administrator.

    Financial instruments include (but are not limited to) convertible notes, debentures, bonds, promissory notes, loans to the company, futures contracts, forward contracts and currency swap contracts relating to the company, and rights or options to acquire any of these (including rights or options to acquire shares in a company). Many financial instruments may be referred to as securities.

    If you make this choice, you will make a capital loss equal to the reduced cost base of the shares (or financial instruments) at the time of the liquidator’s or administrator’s declaration. The cost base and reduced cost base of the shares (or financial instruments) are reduced to nil just after the liquidator or administrator makes the declaration.

    These rules do not apply to:

    • a financial instrument where any profit made on the disposal or redemption of it would be included in your assessable income or any loss would be deductible, such as a traditional security or qualifying security
    • a right acquired prior to 1 July 2009 under an employee share scheme
    • a share acquired under an employee share scheme if it is a qualifying share, you did not make a section 139E election for the share under the employee share rules, and the declaration by the liquidator or administrator was made no later than 30 days after the ‘cessation time’ for the share. For more information about employee share schemes, see Employee share schemes – answers to frequently asked questions by employees
    • an ESS interest or an ESS interest that is a beneficial interest in a right that is forfeited and is taken to have been acquired, or
    • units in unit trusts or financial instruments relating to trusts.

    For information about capital losses on worthless shares see Shares and other securities that become worthless.

    End of find out more

    Example 25: Liquidator's declaration that shares are worthless

    The administrators of Pasminco Ltd made a written declaration on 31 March 2005 that they had reasonable grounds to believe that there was no likelihood that the shareholders of Pasminco would receive any distribution from their shares.

    Hillary purchased shares in Pasminco Ltd in March 1998 for $1.70, including brokerage. Following the administrators’ declaration, Hillary chose to make capital losses equal to the reduced cost bases of her shares as at 31 March 2005. She claimed the capital losses in her 2005 tax return.

    End of example

    If no declaration is made by a liquidator or administrator or you have not chosen to make a capital loss following a declaration by a liquidator or administrator (for information about when and how you make a choice, see Choices), you may make a capital loss on your shares or financial instruments when a court order is given to dissolve the company. Also, if a company is wound up voluntarily, shareholders may realise a capital loss either three months after a liquidator lodges a tax return showing that the final meeting of the company has been held, or on another date declared by a court. The cancellation of shares as a result of the dissolution of the company is an example of CGT event C2.

    Takeovers and mergers

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If a company in which you own shares is taken over or merges with another company, you may have a CGT obligation if you are required to dispose of your existing shares or they are cancelled.

    In certain circumstances, if you acquire new shares in the takeover or merged company, you may be able to defer paying CGT until a later CGT event happens. For more information, see Scrip for scrip rollover.

    Some takeover or merger arrangements involve an exchange of shares. In these cases, when you calculate your capital gain or capital loss, your capital proceeds will be the market value of the shares received in the takeover or merged company at the time of disposal of your original shares.

    If you receive a combination of money and shares in the takeover or merged company, your capital proceeds are the total of the money and the market value of the shares you received at the time of disposal of the shares.

    The cost of acquiring the shares in the takeover or merged company is the market value of your original shares at the time you acquire the other shares, reduced by any cash proceeds.

    To correctly calculate the capital gain or capital loss for your original shares, you will need to keep records (in addition to the usual records) showing the parties to the arrangement, the conditions of the arrangement and the capital proceeds.

    As each takeover or merger arrangement will vary according to its own particular circumstances, you need to get full details of the arrangement from the parties involved.

    We are assuming in the example below that the scrip for scrip rollover does not apply.

    Example 26: Takeover

    In October 2000, Desiree bought 500 shares in DEF Ltd. These shares are currently worth $2 each. Their cost base is $1.50.

    XYZ Ltd offers to acquire each share in DEF Ltd for one share in XYZ Ltd and 75 cents cash. The shares in XYZ Ltd are valued at $1.25 each. Accepting the offer, Desiree receives 500 shares in XYZ Ltd and $375 cash.

    The capital proceeds received for each share in DEF Ltd is $2 ($1.25 market value of each XYZ Ltd share plus 75 cents cash). Therefore, as the cost base of each DEF Ltd share is $1.50, Desiree will make a capital gain of 50 cents ($2 – $1.50) on each share, a total of $250.

    The cost base of the newly acquired XYZ Ltd shares is the market value of the shares in DEF Ltd ($2) less the cash amount received ($0.75) which equals $1.25 each or a total of $625 (500 × $1.25).

    End of example

    Scrip for scrip rollover

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If a company in which you owned shares was taken over and you received new shares in the takeover company, you may be entitled to a scrip for scrip rollover. You may also be eligible for this rollover if you exchange a unit or other interest in a fixed trust, for a similar interest in another fixed trust.

    A scrip-for-scrip rollover is not available if a share is exchanged for a unit or other interest in a fixed trust, or if a unit or other interest in a fixed trust is exchanged for a share.

    You can only choose the rollover if you have made a capital gain from such an exchange on or after 10 December 1999. A rollover does not apply to a capital loss.

    A rollover is only available if the exchange is in consequence of an arrangement that results in the acquiring entity (or the wholly owned group of which it is a member) becoming the owner of 80% or more of the original company or trust.

    For companies, the arrangement may qualify for the scrip for scrip rollover if:

    • holders of voting interests in the target entity can participate in the merger or takeover on substantially the same terms
    • it includes a takeover bid that does not contravene key provisions in Chapter 6 of the Corporations Act, or
    • if the target entity is a company, it includes a scheme of arrangement approved by a court under Part 5.1 of the Corporations Act.

    For trusts, an arrangement may qualify if:

    • all owners of trust voting interests in the original entity or, where there are no voting interests, all owners of units or other fixed interests can participate, or
    • it includes a takeover bid that does not contravene the Corporations Act.

    There are special rules if a company or trust has a small number of shareholders or beneficiaries or there is a significant common stakeholder. If the company or trust does not let you know, you will need to seek information from them about whether the conditions have been satisfied.

    The rollover allows you to disregard the capital gain made from the original shares, units or other interest. You are taken to have acquired the replacement shares, units or other interest for the cost base of the original interest.

    You can apply the CGT discount when you dispose of new shares providing the combined period that you owned the original shares and the new shares is at least 12 months. The same applies to units in a trust. Note that you have to deduct any capital losses (including unapplied net capital losses from earlier years) from your capital gains before applying the CGT discount.

    You may only be eligible for a partial rollover if you exchange shares, units or interests for similar interests in another entity (replacement interest) plus something else, usually cash.

    This is because the rollover applies only to the replacement interest. You will need to apportion the cost base of the original interest between the replacement interest and the cash (or other proceeds not eligible for the rollover).

    If your original shares, units or other interests were acquired before 20 September 1985 (pre-CGT), you are not eligible for a scrip for scrip rollover. Instead, you acquire the replacement interest at the time of the exchange and the replacement interest is no longer a pre-CGT asset. However, if the arrangement is one that would otherwise qualify for a scrip for scrip rollover, the cost base of the replacement interest is its market value just after the acquisition.

    Example 27: Partial scrip for scrip rollover

    Gunther owns 100 shares in Windsor Ltd, each with a cost base of $9. He accepts a takeover offer from Regal Ltd, which provides for Gunther to receive one Regal share plus $10 cash for each share in Windsor. Gunther receives 100 shares in Regal and $1,000 cash. Just after Gunther is issued shares in Regal, each share is worth $20.

    Gunther receives $10 cash for each of his Windsor shares and so has $1,000 to which a rollover does not apply.

    In this case, it is reasonable to allocate a portion of the cost base of the original shares having regard to the proportion that the cash bears to the total proceeds. That is:

    $1,000

    ÷

    $3,000

    x

    $900

    =

    $300

    cash

     

    total proceeds
    – cash and value of shares received

     

    cost base of original shares

     

    proportion of cost base for which cash was received

     

    Gunther’s capital gain is as follows:

    $1,000
    (cash)

    $300
    (cost base)

    =

    $700
    (capital gain)

     

    Gunther calculates the cost base of each of his Regal shares as follows:

    ($900 – $300) ÷ 100 = $6

    End of example

    Example 28: Scrip for scrip rollover

    Stephanie owns ordinary shares in Reef Ltd. On 28 February 2013, she accepted a takeover offer from Starfish Ltd, under which she received one ordinary share and one preference share for each Reef share. The market value of the Starfish shares just after Stephanie acquired them was $20 for each ordinary share and $10 for each preference share.

    The cost base of each Reef share just before Stephanie ceased to own them was $15.

    The offer made by Starfish Ltd satisfied all the requirements for a scrip for scrip rollover.

    If the rollover did not apply, Stephanie would have made a capital gain per share of:

    $30
    (capital proceeds)

    $15
    (cost base)

    =

    $15
    (capital gain)

     

    Scrip for scrip rollover allows Stephanie to disregard the capital gain. The cost base of the Starfish shares is the cost base of the Reef Ltd shares.

    Apportioning the cost base

    As the exchange is one share in Reef Ltd for two shares in Starfish Ltd, Stephanie needs to apportion the cost base of the Reef Ltd share between the ordinary share and the preference share.

    Cost base of ordinary share:

    $20 ÷ 30 × $15 = $10

    Cost base of preference share:

    $10 ÷ 30 × $15 = $5
    End of example

    Demergers

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    A demerger involves the restructuring of a corporate or fixed trust group by splitting its operations into two or more entities or groups. Under a demerger, the owners of the head entity of the group (that is, the shareholders of the company or unit holders of the trust) acquire a direct interest (shares or units) in an entity that was formerly part of the group (the demerged entity).

    Example 29: Demerger

    Peter owns shares (his original interest) in Company A. Company B is a wholly owned subsidiary of Company A. Company A undertakes a demerger by transferring all its shares in Company B to its shareholders. Following the demerger, all the shareholders in Company A, including Peter, will own all the shares in Company B (their new interests) in the same proportion that they hold their shares in Company A.

    End of example
    Demergers on or after 1 July 2002

    Certain rules apply to eligible demergers that happened on or after 1 July 2002.

    Demerger rollover

    If you received new interests in a demerged entity under an eligible demerger that happened on or after 1 July 2002, you need to be aware of the following CGT consequences:

    • you may be entitled to choose a rollover for any capital gain or capital loss you make under the demerger, and
    • you must calculate the cost base and reduced cost base of your interests in the head entity and your new interests in the demerged entity immediately after the demerger.
    Attention

    The head entity will normally advise you whether it has undertaken an eligible demerger. We may have provided advice to the head entity in the form of a class ruling.

    End of attention
    Rollover available

    To choose a rollover, the demerger must be an eligible demerger.

    • If you choose a rollover:
    • you disregard any capital gain or capital loss made under the demerger, and
    • your new interests in the demerged entity are acquired on the date of the demerger. However, if a proportion of your original interests was acquired before 20 September 1985 (pre-CGT), the same proportion of your new interests in the demerged entity is treated as pre-CGT assets.

    If you do not choose a rollover:

    • you cannot disregard any capital gain or capital loss made under the demerger, and
    • all your new interests in the demerged entity are acquired on the date of the demerger.
    Demerger exemption

    This exemption applies to disregard certain capital gains or capital losses made by a demerging entity in a demerger group. A demerger group comprises the head entity of a group of companies or trusts and at least one demerger subsidiary. Discretionary trusts and superannuation funds cannot be members of a demerger group.

    Cost base calculations

    You must recalculate the first element of the cost base and reduced cost base of your remaining original interests in the head entity and of your new interests in the demerged entity. You must make these calculations whether you choose a rollover or not, or if no CGT event happens to your original interests under the demerger.

    The calculation will depend on whether you have pre-CGT original interests in the head entity.

    Cost base calculations where you do not have pre-CGT interests

    You work out the cost base and reduced cost base of your remaining post-CGT original interests and your post-CGT new interests immediately after the demerger. You do this by spreading the total cost base of your post-CGT original interests (immediately before the demerger) over both your remaining post-CGT original interests and your post-CGT new interests. The following steps explain how to do this.

    The steps and example 30 work out new cost bases using a method referred to as the ‘relative market value method’, which is sometimes also referred to as the ‘averaging method’. You may be able to use other methods if they are reasonable. For more information, visit www.ato.gov.au/demergersExternal Link  

    Step 1

    Add the cost bases of your post-CGT original interests immediately before the demerger. (Do not reduce your total cost base by any capital amounts returned to you under the demerger and do not include indexation.)

    Step 2

    Use the relevant percentages to apportion the step 1 amount between:

    • your post-CGT original interests in the head entity, and
    • your post-CGT new interests in the demerged entity.

    The head entity should advise you of the relevant percentages to use.

    Step 3

    Divide the cost base apportioned to the head entity interests (from step 2) by the number of remaining post-CGT original interests you own.

    Step 4

    Divide the cost base apportioned to the demerged entity interests (from step 2) by the number of post-CGT new interests you own.

    These amounts will form the first element of the cost base and reduced cost base of your post-CGT original interests and post-CGT new interests.

    Example 30: No pre-CGT interests

    Under the BHP Billiton Ltd demerger of BHP Steel Ltd, shareholders received one BHP Steel share for every five BHP Billiton shares they owned at the date of the demerger.

    Anita owned 280 BHP Billiton shares (all post-CGT) with a cost base of $2,500 immediately before the demerger. Under the demerger, Anita received 56 BHP Steel shares. Anita works out the cost base and reduced cost base of her BHP Billiton shares and BHP Steel shares as follows:

    Step 1

    The total cost base of the BHP Billiton shares immediately before the demerger was $2,500.

    Step 2

    BHP Billiton advised shareholders to apportion 94.937% of the total cost base from step 1 to BHP Billiton shares and 5.063% to BHP Steel shares:

    (a) BHP Billiton: 94.937% x $2,500= $2,373.43

    (b) BHP Steel: 5.063% x $2,500 = $126.58

    Step 3

    Divide the step 2(a) amount by the 280 BHP Billiton shares:

     

    $2,373.43
    280

    = $8.48 per share

    Step 4

    Divide the step 2(b) amount by the 56 BHP Steel shares

     

    $126.58
    56

    = $2.26 per share

     

    End of example
    Cost base calculations where you have pre-CGT interests

    If you choose a rollover

    If you choose a rollover and a proportion of your original interests are pre-CGT, the same proportion of your new interests will be treated as pre-CGT interests. It is not necessary to calculate the cost base and reduced cost base for your pre-CGT interests.

    You calculate the cost base and reduced cost base of your remaining post-CGT original interests and your post-CGT new interests in the same way as shown in the example above.

    There is no change to the acquisition date of your original interests.

    If you do not or cannot choose a rollover

    If you do not or you cannot choose a rollover (for example, because a CGT event did not happen to your original interests), the new interests that you receive for your pre-CGT original interests are treated as post-CGT interests. You work out the cost base of these new interests under the ordinary cost base rules (this will generally be equal to the capital return and dividend distributed from the head entity that is applied to acquire those new interests).

    Attention

    It may be to your advantage not to choose a rollover for the new interests you receive for your pre-CGT original interests (for example, where the reduced cost bases of those new interests calculated under the ordinary cost base rules mean you will make a capital loss when you dispose of them).

    End of attention

    You calculate the cost base and reduced cost base of your remaining post-CGT original interests and your post-CGT new interests (other than those received for pre-CGT original interests) in the same way as shown in example 30, except that you ignore the new interests received for pre-CGT original interests in the calculation.

    There is no change to the acquisition date of your original interests.

    Example 31: With pre-CGT interests

    Anita owned 400 BHP Billiton shares immediately before the demerger:

    • 120 pre-CGT shares, and
    • 280 post-CGT shares (the cost base of which, immediately before the demerger, was $2,500).

    (i) If Anita chose a rollover, the 24 BHP Steel shares she received for the 120 pre-CGT BHP Billiton shares will also be pre-CGT. It is not necessary to work out the cost base and reduced cost base for your pre-CGT interests.

    Immediately after the demerger, she calculates the cost base and reduced cost base of her 280 post-CGT BHP Billiton shares and the 56 BHP Steel shares she received for those BHP Billiton shares in the same way as shown in example 30.

    (ii) If Anita did not choose a rollover, the 24 BHP Steel shares she received for the 120 pre-CGT BHP shares are post-CGT shares acquired on the date of the demerger. Immediately after the demerger, the cost base and reduced cost base of the 24 BHP Steel shares are $3.45 per share (the capital return of $0.69 per share × 5).

    Immediately after the demerger, she calculates the cost base and reduced cost base of her 280 post-CGT BHP Billiton shares and the 56 BHP Steel shares she received for those BHP Billiton shares in the same way as shown in example 30.

    In either case, there is no change to the pre-CGT status of Anita’s 120 BHP Billiton shares.

    End of example
    Using the discount method if you sell your shares after the demerger

    If you sell your new interests in the demerged entity after the demerger, you must have owned those interests for at least 12 months from the date you acquired the corresponding original interests in the head entity in order to use the discount method.

    Example 32: Using the discount method after a demerger (1)

    You received BHP Steel Ltd shares under the demerger on 22 July 2002. They related to shares you acquired in BHP Billiton Ltd on 15 August 2001. You can only use the discount method to work out your capital gain on these shares if you dispose of them after 15 August 2002; that is, more than 12 months after the date you acquired the BHP Billiton shares.

    End of example

    However, you calculate the 12 months from the date of demerger if you:

    • did not choose the rollover and you received new interests in the demerged entity which relate to pre-CGT interests in the head entity, or
    • acquired your new interests without a CGT event happening to your original interests.

    Example 33: Using the discount method after a demerger (2)

    You received BHP Steel Ltd shares under the demerger where you calculated the cost base as $3.45 per share (because they related to pre-CGT shares you owned in BHP Billiton Ltd and you did not choose a rollover). You can only use the discount method to work out your capital gain on these shares if you disposed of them after 22 July 2003; that is, more than 12 months after the demerger.

    End of example

    Demergers calculator and other products and information

    We have a demergers calculator to help you make these calculations.

    We also have other products to assist you, such as question-and-answer sheets for some demergers undertaken by major listed entities, see www.ato.gov.au/demergersExternal Link

    End of find out more

    Dividend reinvestment plans

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Some companies ask their shareholders whether they would like to participate in a dividend reinvestment plan. Under these plans, shareholders can choose to use their dividend to acquire additional shares in the company instead of receiving a cash payment. These shares are usually issued at a discount on the current market price of the shares in the company.

    For CGT purposes, if you participate in a dividend reinvestment plan you are treated as if you had received a cash dividend and then used the cash to buy additional shares.

    Each share (or parcel of shares) acquired in this way, on or after 20 September 1985, is subject to CGT. The cost base of the new shares includes the price you paid to acquire them, that is, the amount of the dividend.

    Example 34: Dividend reinvestment plans

    Natalie owns 1,440 shares in PHB Ltd. The shares are currently worth $8 each. In November 2012, the company declared a dividend of 25 cents per share.

    Natalie could either take the $360 dividend as cash (1,440 × 25 cents) or receive 45 additional shares in the company (360 ÷ 8).

    Natalie decided to participate in the dividend reinvestment plan and received 45 new shares on 20 December 2012. She included the $360 dividend in her 2012–13 assessable income.

    For CGT purposes, she acquired the 45 new shares for $360 on 20 December 2012.

    End of example

    Bonus shares

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Bonus shares are additional shares a shareholder receives for an existing holding of shares in a company. If you dispose of bonus shares received on or after 20 September 1985, you may make a capital gain. You may also have to modify the cost base and reduced cost base of your existing shares in the company if you receive bonus shares.

    The cost base and reduced cost base of bonus shares depend on whether the bonus shares are assessable as a dividend.

    As a result of changes to company and taxation laws, the paid-up value of bonus shares is now generally not assessable as a dividend. An exception to this rule is where you have the choice of being paid a cash dividend or of being issued shares under a dividend reinvestment plan. These shares are treated as dividends and the amount of the dividend is included in your assessable income.

    Table 3 explains how the time of issue of your bonus shares affects whether the paid-up value of the bonus shares is assessed as a dividend.

    Date Implications of timing of bonus shares

    From 20 September 1985 to 30 June 1987 inclusive

    Many bonus shares issued were paid out of a company’s asset revaluation reserve or from a share premium account. These bonus shares are not usually assessable dividends.

    From 1 July 1987 to 30 June 1998 inclusive

    The paid-up value of bonus shares issued is assessed as a dividend unless paid from a share premium account.

    From 1 July 1998

    The paid-up value of bonus shares issued is not assessed as a dividend unless part of the dividend was paid in cash or paid as part of a dividend reinvestment plan.

     

    There are other, less common, circumstances where bonus shares will be assessed as a dividend, for example, where:

    • the bonus shares are being substituted for a dividend to give a tax advantage, or
    • the company directs bonus shares to some shareholders and dividends to others to give them a tax benefit.

    Flowchart 3.1 in appendix 3 summarises the different rules applying to different bonus shares issued on or after 20 September 1985.

    Bonus shares issued where no amount is assessed as a dividend

    Original shares acquired on or after 20 September 1985

    If your bonus shares relate to other shares that you acquired on or after 20 September 1985 (referred to as your original shares) your bonus shares are taken to have been acquired on the date you acquired your original shares. If you acquired your original shares at different times, you will have to work out how many of your bonus shares are taken to have been acquired at each of those times.

    Calculate the cost base and reduced cost base of the bonus shares by apportioning the cost base and reduced cost base of the original shares over both the original and the bonus shares. Effectively, this results in a reduction of the cost base and reduced cost base of the original shares. You also include any calls paid on partly paid bonus shares as part of the cost base and reduced cost base that is apportioned between the original and the bonus shares.

    Original shares acquired before 20 September 1985

    Your CGT obligations depend on when the bonus shares were issued and whether they are fully paid or partly paid. For more information, see flowchart 3.1 in appendix 3.

    Example 35: Fully paid bonus shares

    Chris bought 100 shares in MAC Ltd for $1 each on 1 June 1985. He bought 300 more shares for $1 each on 27 May 1986. On 15 November 1986, MAC Ltd issued Chris with 400 bonus shares from its capital profits reserve, fully paid to $1. Chris did not pay anything to acquire the bonus shares and no part of the value of the bonus shares was assessed as a dividend.

    For CGT purposes, the acquisition date of 100 of the bonus shares is 1 June 1985 (pre-CGT). Therefore, those bonus shares are not subject to CGT.

    The acquisition date of the other 300 bonus shares is 27 May 1986. Their cost base is worked out by spreading the cost of the 300 shares Chris bought on that date over both those original shares and the remaining 300 bonus shares. As the 300 original shares cost $300, the cost base of each share will now be 50 cents.

    End of example

    Example 36: Partly paid bonus shares

    Klaus owns 200 shares in MAC Ltd, which he bought on 31 October 1984, and 200 shares in PUP Ltd, which he bought on 31 January 1985.

    On 1 January 1987, both MAC Ltd and PUP Ltd made their shareholders a one-for-one bonus share offer of $1 shares partly paid to 50 cents. Klaus elected to accept the offer and acquired 200 new partly paid shares in each company. No part of the value of the bonus shares was taxed as a dividend.

    On 1 April 1989, PUP Ltd made a call for the balance of 50 cents outstanding on the partly paid shares, payable on 30 June 1989. Klaus paid the call payment on that date. MAC Ltd has not yet made any calls on its partly paid shares.

    For CGT purposes, Klaus is treated as having acquired his bonus PUP Ltd shares on the date he became liable to pay the call (1 April 1989). The cost base of the bonus shares in PUP Ltd includes the amount of the call payment (50 cents) plus the market value of the shares immediately before the call was made.

    The MAC Ltd bonus shares will continue to have the same acquisition date as the original shares (31 October 1984) and are therefore not subject to CGT. However, this will not be the case if Klaus makes any further payments to the company on calls made by the company for any part of the unpaid amount on the bonus shares. In this case, the acquisition date of the bonus shares will be when the liability to pay the call arises and the bonus shares will then be subject to CGT.

    End of example
    Bonus shares issued where the paid-up value is assessed as a dividend

    If the paid-up value of bonus shares is assessed as a dividend, you may have to pay CGT when you dispose of the bonus shares, regardless of when you acquired the original shares.

    Original shares acquired on or after 20 September 1985

    If your bonus shares relate to original shares that you acquired on or after 20 September 1985, the acquisition date of the bonus shares is the date they were issued. Their cost base and reduced cost base includes the amount of the dividend, plus any call payments you made to the company if they were only partly paid.

    Attention

    Exception – bonus shares received before 1 July 1987

    The exception to this rule is bonus shares you received before 1 July 1987. They are taken to be acquired on the date you acquired your original shares. Their cost base is calculated as if the amount was not taxed as a dividend (see Bonus shares issued where no amount is assessed as a dividend).

    End of attention

    Original shares acquired before 20 September 1985

    The rules that apply where you acquired your original shares before 20 September 1985 depend on when the bonus shares were issued and whether they were partly paid or fully paid. For further details, see flowchart 3.1 in appendix 3.

    Example 37: Cost base of bonus shares

    Mark owns 1,000 shares in RIM Ltd, which he bought on 30 September 1984 for $1 each.

    On 1 February 1997, the company issued him with 500 bonus shares partly paid to 50 cents. The paid-up value of bonus shares ($250) is an assessable dividend to Mark.

    On 1 May 1997, the company made a call for the 50 cents outstanding on each bonus share, which Mark paid on 1 July 1997.

    The total cost base of the bonus shares is $500, consisting of the $250 dividend received on the issue of the bonus shares on 1 February 1997 plus the $250 call payment made on 1 July 1997.

    The bonus shares were acquired on 1 February 1997.

    Because Mark held the bonus shares for more than 12 months when he sold them, he can use the indexation method to calculate his capital gain.

    Amounts payable to a company on shares in the company can be indexed only from the date of actual payment. In Mark’s case, he can only index the $250 call payment from the date he paid it (1 July 1997).

    However, indexation on the $250 dividend included in his assessable income on the issue of the bonus shares was available from 1 February 1997. This is different from the indexation treatment of amounts paid to acquire assets in other circumstances where indexation is available from the time the liability to make the payment arises. The indexation rules are explained in more detail in How to work out your capital gain or capital loss.

    If Mark disposes of the shares after 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999, he can calculate his capital gain using either the indexation method or the discount method.

    End of example

    Bonus units

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you have received bonus units on or after 20 September 1985, you may make a capital gain when you dispose of them.

    The CGT rules for bonus units are similar to those for bonus shares. However, the rules do not apply if the bonus units are issued by a corporate unit trust or a public trading trust.

    When the unit trust issues the bonus units, they will generally tell you what amount (if any) you have to include in your assessable income. You need to keep a record of that information to work out your CGT obligation when you dispose of them.

    Flowchart 3.2 in appendix 3 summarises the rules applying to bonus units issued on or after 20 September 1985.

    Bonus units issued where no amount is included in assessable income

    Original units acquired on or after 20 September 1985

    If your bonus units relate to other units that you acquired on or after 20 September 1985, your bonus units are taken to have been acquired on the date you acquired your original units. If you have original units that you acquired at different times, you will have to work out how many of your bonus units are taken to have been acquired at each of those times.

    Calculate the cost base and reduced cost base of the bonus units by apportioning the cost base and reduced cost base of the original units over the original units and the bonus units. Effectively, this results in a reduction of the cost base and reduced cost base of the original units. You also include any calls paid on partly paid bonus units that are apportioned between the original units and the bonus units as part of the cost base and reduced cost base.

    Original units acquired before 20 September 1985

    The rules that apply if you acquired your original units before 20 September 1985 depend on when the bonus units were issued and whether they were partly paid or fully paid. For further details, see flowchart 3.2 in appendix 3.

    Example 38: Unit trusts

    Sarah is a unit holder in the CPA Unit Trust. She bought 1,000 units on 1 September 1985 for $1 each and 1,000 units on 1 July 1996 for $2 each. On 1 March 1997, the unit trust made a one-for-one bonus unit issue to all unit holders. Sarah received 2,000 new units. She did not include any amount in her assessable income as a result.

    The 1,000 new units issued for the original units she acquired on 1 September 1985 are also treated as having been acquired on that date and are therefore not subject to CGT.

    However, the 1,000 new units issued for the original units she acquired on 1 July 1996 are subject to CGT. Their cost base is worked out by spreading the cost of the original units ($2,000) acquired on that date over both the original units and the bonus units. Each of the units therefore has a cost base of $1.

    End of example

    Bonus units issued where an amount is included in assessable income

    If you include any amount in your assessable income as a result of the issue of bonus units, their acquisition date is the date they were issued, regardless of when you acquired the original units.

    The cost base and reduced cost base of the bonus units is the amount included in your assessable income as a result of the issue of those units, plus any calls you made if they were only partly paid.

    If the bonus units were issued before 20 September 1985, any capital gain or capital loss is disregarded, as they are pre-CGT assets.

    Rights or options to acquire shares or units

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you own shares or units, the company or trust may issue you rights or options to acquire additional shares or units at a specified price. The market value of these rights, at the time the rights or options are issued to you, is non-assessable non-exempt income, provided:

    • you already own shares
    • the right was issued to you because of your ownership of the shares
    • your shares, and the rights, must not be revenue assets or trading stock at the time they are issued
    • those rights were not acquired under an employee share scheme
    • your shares, and the rights, are not traditional securities, and
    • your shares are not convertible interests.

    You will make a capital gain or capital loss when a CGT event happens to:

    • the rights or options, other than as a result of exercising those rights or options
    • shares or units acquired as a result of exercising those rights or options.

    The amount of any capital gain arising from a CGT event will not be reduced by the amount that was previously non-assessable non-exempt income.

    Rights and options issued directly to you from a company or trust for no cost

    You are taken to have acquired the rights and options at the same time as you acquired the original shares or units. Therefore, if you acquired the original shares or units before 20 September 1985, you disregard any capital gain or capital loss you make when the rights or options expire or are sold, as they are pre-CGT assets.

    If you acquired the original shares or units on or after 20 September 1985, you make a capital gain if the capital proceeds on the sale or expiry of the rights or options are more than their cost base. You make a capital loss if the reduced cost base of the rights or options is more than those capital proceeds.

    Rights and options you paid to acquire from a company or trust – or that you acquired from another person

    If you acquired your rights or options on or after 20 September 1985, they are treated much like any other CGT asset and are subject to CGT.

    Flowchart 3.3, Flowchart 3.4 and Flowchart 3.5 in appendix 3 summarise the different rules applying to the treatment of rights or options to acquire shares or units.

    Exercising rights or options to acquire shares or units

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Many people decide to exercise their rights or options to acquire new shares or units rather than sell them. In most cases, no CGT is payable at the time you exercise the rights or options.

    The acquisition date of the shares or units is the date of exercise of the rights or options to acquire the shares or units.

    If you exercise the rights or options on or after 20 September 1985, some special rules apply for calculating the cost base and reduced cost base of shares or units acquired as a result.

    The rules outlined below do not apply to rights or options to acquire shares under an employee share scheme.

    Rights or options issued directly to you for no cost from a company or trust in which you are a shareholder or unit holder

    The amount included in the cost base and reduced cost base of the shares or units you acquire on exercise of the rights or options depends on when you acquired your original shares or units. The following rules do not apply to rights or options to acquire units issued before 29 January 1988.

    Original shares or units acquired before 20 September 1985

    The first element of the cost base and reduced cost base for the shares or units you acquire on exercising your rights or options is:

    • the market value of the rights or options at the time you exercised them, plus
    • the amount you paid to exercise the rights or options, plus
    • any amount that was included in your assessable income as a result of you exercising your rights or options on or after 1 July 2001.

    Original shares or units acquired on or after 20 September 1985

    The first element of the cost base and reduced cost base for the shares or units you acquire on exercising your rights or options is:

    • the cost base of the rights or options at the time you exercised them plus
    • the amount you paid to exercise the rights or options (except to the extent that the amount is represented in the cost base of the rights or options at the time of exercise) plus
    • any amount that was included in your assessable income as a result of you exercising your rights or options on or after 1 July 2001.

    Flowchart 3.3 in appendix 3 summarises the rules relating to the treatment of such options and rights.

    Rights or options you acquired from an individual or entity that received them as a shareholder in the company or as a unit holder in the trust

    The amount included in the cost base and reduced cost base of the shares or units you acquire depends on when you acquired your rights or options. The following rules do not apply to rights or options to acquire units issued before 29 January 1988.

    Rights or options acquired before 20 September 1985

    If the rights or options were exercised on or after 20 September 1985, the first element of the cost base and reduced cost base for the shares is:

    • the market value of the rights or options at the time you exercised them plus
    • the amount you paid to exercise the rights or options plus
    • any amount that was included in your assessable income as a result of you exercising your rights or options on or after 1 July 2001.

    Rights or options acquired on or after 20 September 1985

    The first element of the cost base and reduced cost base for the shares or units you acquire on exercising your rights or options is:

    • the cost base for the rights or options (including any amount you paid for them) plus
    • the amount you paid for the shares or units on exercising the rights or options (except to the extent that the amount is represented in the cost base of the rights or options at the time of exercise) plus
    • any amount that was included in your assessable income as a result of you exercising your rights or options on or after 1 July 2001.

    Flowchart 3.4 in appendix 3 summarises the rules relating to the treatment of such options and rights.

    Rights or options you paid for that were issued directly to you from the company or trust or that you acquired from an individual or entity that was not a shareholder or unit holder

    For rights or options to acquire units, these rules apply to rights or options exercised on or after 27 May 2005.

    The amount included in the cost base and reduced cost base of the shares or units you acquire depends on when you acquired your rights or options.

    Rights or options acquired before 20 September 1985

    This includes rights or options last renewed or extended after that date if they were exercised before 27 May 2005.

    If the rights or options were exercised on or after 20 September 1985 the first element of the cost base and reduced cost base for the shares or units is:

    • the market value of the rights or options at the time you exercised them plus
    • the amount you paid for the shares or units on exercising the rights or options.

    Rights or options acquired on or after 20 September 1985

    This includes rights or options you acquired before 20 September 1985 which were last renewed or extended after that date and were exercised before 27 May 2005.

    The first element of the cost base and reduced cost base for the shares or units you acquire on exercising your rights or options is:

    • the amount you paid for the rights or options plus
    • the amount you paid for the shares or units on exercising the rights or options.

    Flowchart 3.5 in appendix 3 summarises the rules relating to the treatment of such options and rights.

    Example 39: Sale of rights

    Shanti owns 2,000 shares in ZAC Ltd. She bought 1,000 shares on 1 June 1985 and 1,000 shares on 1 December 1996.

    On 1 July 1998, ZAC Ltd granted each of its shareholders one right for each four shares owned to acquire shares in the company for $1.80 each. Shanti therefore received 500 rights in total. At that time, shares in ZAC Ltd were worth $2. Each right was therefore worth 20 cents.

    Shanti decided that she did not wish to buy any more shares in ZAC Ltd, so she sold all her rights for 20 cents each, a total amount of $100. Only those rights issued for the shares she bought on 1 December 1996 are subject to CGT. As Shanti did not pay anything for the rights, she has made a $50 taxable capital gain on their sale.

    The $50 Shanti received on the sale of her rights for the shares she bought on 1 June 1985 is not subject to CGT, as those rights are taken to have been acquired at the same time as the shares, that is, before 20 September 1985.

    End of example

    Example 40: Rights exercised

    Assume that, in example 39, Shanti wished to acquire more shares in ZAC Ltd. She therefore exercised all 500 rights on 1 August 1998 when they were still worth 20 cents each.

    There are no CGT consequences arising from the exercise of the rights.

    However, the 500 shares Shanti acquired on 1 August 1998 when she exercised the rights are subject to CGT and are acquired at the time of the exercise.

    • When Shanti exercised the rights issued for the shares she bought on 1 December 1996, the cost base of the 250 shares she acquired is the amount she paid to exercise each right ($1.80 for each share).
    • When Shanti exercised the rights for the shares she bought before 20 September 1985, Shanti’s cost base for each of the 250 shares she acquired includes not only the exercise price of the right ($1.80) but also the market value of the right at that time (20 cents). The cost base of each share is therefore $2.
    End of example
    CGT discount on shares or units acquired from exercise of rights or options

    You can only use the discount method to calculate your capital gain from an asset if you own it for at least 12 months. In calculating any capital gain on shares or units you acquire from the exercise of a right or option, the 12-month period applies from the date you acquire the shares or units (not the date you acquired the right or option).

    Convertible notes

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    A convertible note (which is one type of convertible interest) is another type of investment you can make in a company or unit trust. A convertible note earns interest on the amount you pay to acquire the note until the note’s expiry date. On expiry of the note, you can either ask for the return of the money paid or convert that amount to acquire new shares or units.

    Convertible notes you acquired after 10 May 1989 will generally not be subject to CGT if you sold or disposed of them before they were converted into shares. Instead, you include any gain you make on your tax return as ordinary income and any loss you make is included as a deduction.

    If the TOFA rules apply to you, gains and losses from your convertible notes may be brought to account under those TOFA rules. For more information about the TOFA rules, see Guide to the taxation of financial arrangements (TOFA) rules  

    For more information, see You and your shares 2013.

    End of find out more
    Attention

    If you have sold or disposed of a convertible note that you acquired before 11 May 1989, phone us on 13 28 66. When you phone, have the date you acquired the convertible note as this may affect the tax treatment.

    End of attention
    Conversion of notes to shares

    The tax treatment that applies when your convertible notes are converted to shares depends on when you acquired the convertible notes, the type of convertible note, when the conversion occurred and when the convertible note was issued.

    Shares acquired by the conversion of convertible notes on or after 20 September 1985 will be subject to CGT when they are sold or disposed of as the shares are taken to be acquired when the conversion happens.

    You may have acquired the convertible notes on or after 20 September 1985 and, as a traditional security or qualifying security, you have already included the gain you made on the conversion of the notes on your tax return as income (or as a deduction if you made a loss). The way you calculate the cost base of the shares varies depending on whether the notes converted to shares before 1 July 2001 or on or after that date. Table 4 below provides a summary.

    Convertible notes issued after 14 May 2002

    If your convertible notes are traditional securities and were issued by a company after 14 May 2002:

    • any gains you make when these notes are converted or exchanged for ordinary shares in a company will not be ordinary income at the time of conversion or exchange, and any losses you make will not be deductible
    • instead, any gains or losses you make on the later sale or disposal of the shares (incorporating any gain or loss that would have been made on the conversion or exchange of the notes) will be
      • subject to CGT if you are an ordinary investor, or
      • ordinary income (or deductible, in the case of a loss) if you are in the business of trading in shares and other securities.
       

    If you are an individual who is an ordinary investor, this means you will be able to get the benefit of the CGT discount if you own the shares for more than 12 months. Table 4 below sets out how you calculate the cost base.

    Table 4: Treatment of convertible notes acquired after 10 May 1989, converted to shares

    Convertible note Converted before 1 July 2001 Converted on or after 1 July 2001

    The note is a traditional security* that was issued before 15 May 2002.

    You include gain on conversion as income (or loss on conversion is deducted).

    Cost base of shares includes their market value at the date the convertible notes were converted.

    You include gain on conversion as income (or loss on conversion is deducted).

    Cost base of shares includes cost base of the convertible note, any amount paid on conversion and any amount included in your assessable income on conversion.

    The note is a traditional security* that was issued after 14 May 2002.

    Not applicable

    You disregard gain (or loss) on conversion.

    Cost base of shares includes cost base of the convertible note and any amount paid on conversion.

    The note is a qualifying security**.

    You include accrued gains as income and include any gain on conversion as income (or deduct any loss on conversion).

    Cost base of shares includes amounts paid to acquire the note and any amount paid on conversion.

    You include accrued gains as income and include any gain on conversion as income (or deduct any loss on conversion).

    Cost base of shares includes cost base of the convertible note, any amount paid on conversion and any amount included in your assessable income on conversion.

     

    *A traditional security is one that is not issued at a discount of more than 1.5%, does not bear deferred interest and is not capital indexed. It may be, for example, a bond, a deposit with a financial institution, or a secured or unsecured loan.

    **A qualifying security is one that has a deferred income element, that is, it is issued under terms such that the investor’s return on investment (other than periodic interest) will be greater than 1.5% per annum.

    Conversion of notes to units

    Convertible notes, converted before 1 July 2001

    If your convertible notes are traditional securities, the first element of the cost base and reduced cost base of the units is their market value at the time of conversion. You disregard any capital gain or capital loss made on their conversion to units in the unit trust.

    If your convertible notes are not traditional securities and were issued by the unit trust after 28 January 1988, the first element of the cost base and reduced cost base of the units includes both the cost of the convertible notes and any further amount payable on their conversion. You disregard any capital gain or capital loss made on their conversion to units in the unit trust.

    Convertible notes, converted after 1 July 2001

    If your convertible notes are traditional securities the first element of the cost base and reduced cost base of the units includes:

    • the cost base of the convertible notes plus
    • any amount paid on conversion plus
    • any amount included in your assessable income on conversion.

    You disregard any capital gain or capital loss made on their conversion to units in the unit trust.

    Similarly, if the convertible notes are not traditional securities and were issued by the unit trust after 28 January 1988, the first element of the cost base and reduced cost base of the units includes:

    • the cost base of the convertible notes plus
    • any amount paid on conversion plus
    • any amount included in your assessable income on conversion.

    You disregard any capital gain or capital loss made on their conversion to units in the unit trust.

    Example 41: Converting notes to shares

    David bought 1,000 convertible notes in DCS Ltd on 1 July 1997 (that is, notes that were issued before 15 May 2002). The notes cost $5 each. Each convertible note is convertible into one DCS Ltd share. On expiry of the notes on 1 July 2000, shares in the company were worth $7 each. David converted the notes to shares, which are subject to CGT. No further amount was payable on conversion of the notes. David sold the shares on 4 December 2012 for $10 each.

    The $2 ($7 – $5) gain David made on the conversion of each of the notes to shares was assessable to David as ordinary income at the time of conversion, that is, in the 2000–01 income year. As such, David has no capital gain in that year.

    The $3 ($10 – $7) gain David made on the sale of each of the shares is subject to CGT. The $7 cost base is the market value per share on the date the notes converted to shares. Because he sold the shares after 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and owned them for at least 12 months, David can claim the CGT discount. David calculates his capital gain as follows:

    $3 per share x 1,000 shares =

    $3,000

    less CGT discount of 50%

    $1,500

    Net capital gain

    $1,500

     

    David includes the capital gain on his 2013 tax return.

    End of example

    Stapled securities

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Stapled securities are created when two or more different securities are legally bound together so that they cannot be sold separately. Many different types of securities can be stapled together. For example, many property trusts have their units stapled to the shares of companies with which they are closely associated.

    The effect of stapling depends on the specific terms of the stapling arrangement. The issuer of the stapled security will be able to provide you with detailed information on their particular stapling arrangement. However, in general, the effect of stapling is that each individual security retains its character and there is no variation to the rights or obligations attaching to the individual securities.

    Although a stapled security must be dealt with as a whole, the individual securities that are stapled are treated separately for tax purposes. For example, if a share in a company and a unit in a unit trust are stapled, you:

    • continue to include separately on your tax return dividends from the company and trust distributions from the trust, and
    • work out any capital gain or capital loss separately for the unit and the share.

    Because each security that makes up your stapled security is a separate CGT asset, you must work out a cost base and reduced cost base for each separately.

    If you acquired the securities after they were stapled (for example, you bought the stapled securities on the ASX), you do this by apportioning, on a reasonable basis, the amount you paid to acquire the stapled security (and any other relevant costs) between the various securities that are stapled. One reasonable basis of apportionment is to have regard to the portion of the value of the stapled security that each security represented. The issuer of the stapled security may provide assistance in determining these amounts.

    Example 42: Apportionment of cost base and reduced cost base to the separate securities

    On 1 September 2002, Cathy acquired 100 JKL stapled securities, which comprised a share in JKL Ltd and a unit in the JKL Unit Trust. She paid $4.00 for each stapled security, and on the basis of the information provided to her by the issuer of the stapled securities, she determined that 60% of the amount paid was attributable to the value of the share and 40% to the value of the unit. On this basis, the first element of the cost base and reduced cost base of each of Cathy’s shares in JKL Ltd will be $2.40 ($4.00 × 60%). The first element of the cost base and reduced cost base of each of Cathy’s units in JKL Unit Trust will be $1.60 ($4.00 × 40%).

    End of example

    If you acquired your stapled securities as part of a corporate restructure you will, during the restructure, have owned individual securities that were not stapled. The way you work out the cost base and reduced cost base of each security depends on the terms of the stapling arrangement.

    The stapling does not result in any CGT consequences for you, because the individual securities are always treated as separate securities. However, there may be other aspects of the whole restructure arrangement which will result in CGT consequences for you.

    Example 43: CGT consequences associated with the stapling of securities

    Jamie acquired 100 units in the Westfield America Trust (WFA) in January 2003. Immediately before the merger of Westfield America Trust with Westfield Holdings Ltd and Westfield Trust (July 2004), the cost base of each of his units was $2.12 (total cost base = $212 ($2.12 × 100)).

    Under the arrangement, Jamie’s original units in WFA were firstly consolidated in the ratio of 0.15 consolidated WFA unit for each original WFA unit. After the consolidation, Jamie held 15 consolidated WFA units with a cost base of $14.13 ($212 ÷ 15) each. There were no CGT consequences for Jamie as a result of the consolidation of his units in WFA.

    Jamie then received a capital distribution of $1.01 for each consolidated unit he held.

    CGT event E4 happens as a result of the capital distribution (see appendix 1). Consequently, Jamie must reduce the cost base of each of his consolidated WFA units by $1.01 to $13.12.

    The capital distribution was compulsorily applied to acquire a share in Westfield Holdings Ltd (WSF) for $0.01 and a unit in the Westfield Trust (WFT) for $1.00. The first element of the cost base and reduced cost base of each of Jamie’s new shares in WSF will be $0.01 and, for each new WFT unit, $1.00.

    The units and shares were then stapled to form a Westfield Group Security. There were no CGT consequences for Jamie as a result of the stapling of each consolidated WFA unit to each new WFT unit and WSF share.

    Following the arrangement, Jamie holds 15 Westfield Group Securities with the following CGT attributes:

    Element WFA unit WFT unit WSF share Total
    Cost base (initial)

    $13.12

    $1.00

    $0.01

    $14.13

     

    End of example

    When you dispose of your stapled securities, you must divide the capital proceeds (on a reasonable basis) between the securities that make up the stapled security and then work out whether you have made a capital gain or capital loss on each security.

    Attention

    Other tax provisions may apply upon disposal of some securities, for example, you include a gain made on a traditional security in your assessable income under other tax provisions.

    End of attention

    Example 44: Apportioning the capital proceeds between the separate securities

    On 1 August 1983, Kelley purchased 100 shares in XYZ Ltd for $4.00 per share. In August 2002, Kelley was allocated 100 units in XYZ Unit Trust under a corporate reorganisation of the XYZ Group. The units were acquired for $1.00 each, with the funds to acquire the units coming from a capital reduction made in respect of her shares. At that same time, Kelley’s shares in XYZ Ltd and units in XYZ Unit Trust were stapled and became known as XYZ stapled securities.

    Kelley disposed of all of her XYZ stapled securities on 1 March 2013 for $8.00 per security. On the basis of the information provided by the issuer of the stapled securities, Kelley determined that of this amount, 70% or $5.60 per share ($8.00 × 70%) was attributable to the value of her XYZ Ltd shares, and 30% or $2.40 per unit ($8.00 × 30%) attributable to the value of her units in the XYZ Unit Trust.

    Kelley must account for the sale of each share and unit (that make up the stapled security) separately.

    As Kelley acquired her XYZ Ltd shares before 20 September 1985, she disregards any capital gain or capital loss she makes on the disposal of these shares.

    Kelley will make a capital gain of $1.40 per unit ($2.40 – $1.00) on the disposal of her units in the XYZ Unit Trust. As Kelley owned those units for more than 12 months, she can reduce her capital gain by the CGT discount of 50% after applying any capital losses.

    End of example

    Employee share schemes

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Some companies encourage employees to participate in employee share schemes by offering them discounted shares or rights (including options) to acquire shares. Employee share scheme income tax rules (ESS tax rules) apply to this discount.

    In the 2009 Budget, the Government announced changes to the income tax concessions previously available to participants in employee share schemes (ESS). The changes apply to shares and rights acquired under an ESS after 1 July 2009.

    Taxpayers can no longer choose to have the discount on their shares and rights taxed either upfront or in the future. Discounts on shares and rights acquired under an ESS will generally be assessed in the income year in which the shares or rights are acquired.

    Deferral of the tax liability is limited to schemes that meet the qualifying conditions for deferral under the earlier law and:

    • that are based on salary sacrifice and offer no more than $5,000 worth of shares to an employee, or
    • where shares or rights obtained are subject to a 'real risk of forfeiture'. (The test of 'real risk of forfeiture' is whether a reasonable person would conclude that there is a actual risk that the share or right will not be fully issued to an employee by a particular time and will be forfeited.)

    Only employees with an adjusted taxable income of less than $180,000 now have access to the tax exemption of up to $1,000 of the total discounts.

    For more general information on employee share schemes, see Employee share schemes – answers to frequently asked questions by employees.

    End of find out more
    CGT implications for employee shares and rights under a corporate restructure

    If employee shares or rights are exchanged for replacement shares or rights in a new company under a corporate restructure that happened on or after 1 July 2004, a rollover may be available so that there is no taxing point under the ESS tax rules. Corporate restructures affected include mergers, demergers (in limited circumstances) and 100% takeovers. Any capital gain or capital loss made on the employee shares or rights because of the restructure will be disregarded where this rollover applies.

    For more information, see Employee share scheme rollover relief.

    End of find out more
    Changing residence or working in multiple countries

    There are specific CGT rules relating to ESS shares or rights held by employees who become, or cease to be, Australian residents. There are also specific rules for temporary residents.

    Non-assessable payments

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    You may need to adjust the cost base of shares or units for CGT calculations if you receive a non-assessable payment without disposing of your shares or units. A payment or distribution can include money and property.

    You need to keep accurate records of the amount and date of any non-assessable payments on your shares and units.

    Attention

    Non-assessable payments after a recent restructure

    As a result of some stapling arrangements, some investors in managed funds have received units which have a very low cost base. The payment of certain non-assessable amounts in excess of the cost base of the units will result in these investors making a capital gain.

    End of attention
    Non-assessable payments from a company (CGT event G1)

    Non-assessable payments to shareholders are not very common and would generally be made only if a company has shareholder approval to reduce its share capital. If you receive a non-assessable payment from a company (that is, a payment that is not a dividend or an amount that is taken to be a dividend for tax purposes), you need to adjust the cost base of the shares at the time of the payment. These payments will often be referred to as a return of capital. If the amount of the non-assessable payment is not more than the cost base of the shares at the time of payment, you reduce the cost base and reduced cost base by the amount of the payment.

    You make a capital gain if the amount of the non-assessable payment is more than the cost base of the shares. The amount of the capital gain is equal to the excess. If you make a capital gain, you reduce the cost base and reduced cost base of the shares to nil. You cannot make a capital loss from the receipt of a non-assessable payment.

    Interim liquidation distributions that are not dividends can be treated in the same way as other non-assessable payments under CGT event G1.

    The exception is if the payment is made to you by a liquidator after the declaration and the company is dissolved within 18 months of such a payment. In this case, you include the payment as capital proceeds on the cancellation of your shares (rather than you making a capital gain at the time of the payment). In preparing your tax return, you may delay declaring any capital gain until your shares are cancelled unless you are advised by the liquidator in writing that the company will not cease to exist within 18 months of you receiving the payment.

    Example 45: Non-assessable payments

    Rob bought 1,500 shares in RAP Ltd on 1 July 1994 for $5 each, including brokerage and stamp duty. On 30 November 2007, as part of a shareholder-approved scheme for the reduction of RAP Ltd’s share capital, he received a non-assessable payment of 50 cents per share. Just before Rob received the payment, the cost base of each share (without indexation) was $5.

    As the amount of the payment is not more than the cost base (without indexation), he reduces the cost base of each share at 30 November 2007 by the amount of the payment to $4.50 ($5.00 – 50 cents). As Rob has chosen not to index the cost base, he can claim the CGT discount if he disposes of the shares in the future.

    End of example
    Non-assessable payments from a unit trust (CGT event E4)

    Unit trusts often make non-assessable payments to unit holders. Your CGT obligations in this situation are explained in Trust distributions.

    When you sell the units, you must adjust their cost base and reduced cost base. The amount of the adjustment is based on the amount of non-assessable payments you received during the income year up to the date of sale. You use the adjusted cost base and reduced cost base to work out your capital gain or capital loss.

    Attention

    Non-assessable payments under a demerger

    If you receive a non-assessable payment under an eligible demerger, you do not deduct the payment from the cost base and the reduced cost base of your shares or units. Instead, you adjust your cost base and reduced cost base under the demerger rules. You may make a capital gain on the non-assessable payment if it exceeds the cost base of your original share or unit, although you will be able to choose a CGT rollover.

    An eligible demerger is one that has happened on or after 1 July 2002 and satisfies certain tests. The head entity will normally advise shareholders or unit holders if this is the case.

    For more information about demergers, see Demergers.

    End of attention

    Investments in foreign hybrids

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    A foreign hybrid is an entity that is taxed in Australia as a company but taxed overseas as a partnership. This can include a limited partnership, a limited liability partnership and a US limited liability company.

    If you have an investment in a foreign hybrid (referred to as being a member of a foreign hybrid), you are treated for Australian tax purposes as having an interest in each asset of the partnership.

    As a consequence, any capital gain or capital loss made for a foreign hybrid or its assets is taken to be made by the member.

    General value shifting regime (GVSR)

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you own shares in a company or units (or other fixed interests) in a trust, you may be affected by value shifting rules. These rules may apply to you if:

    • you have interests in a company or trust in which equity or loan interests have been issued or bought back at other than market value, or varied such that the values of some interests have increased while others have decreased (direct value shifts on interests), or
    • you have interests in an entity whose dealings (such as providing loans or other services, or transferring assets) with another entity are neither at market value nor arm’s length and both entities are under the same control or ownership (indirect value shifting).

    For more information on how to GVSR rules may apply to you, see:

    End of find out more

    Using the capital gain or capital loss worksheet for shares

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    In example 46 below, Tony uses the indexation method, the discount method and the 'other' method to calculate his capital gain so he can decide which method gives him the best result. This example shows you how to complete the Capital gain or capital loss worksheet (PDF, 198KB) to calculate your capital gain when you acquire or dispose of shares.

    See How to work out your capital gain or capital loss for a description of each method and when you can use each one.

    Remember that if you bought and sold your shares within 12 months, you must use the 'other' method to calculate your capital gain. If you owned your shares for 12 months or more, you may be able to use either the discount method or the indexation method, whichever gives you the better result.

    Because each share in a parcel of shares is a separate CGT asset, you can use different methods to work out the amount of any capital gain for shares within a parcel. This may be to your advantage if you have capital losses to apply. See example 12.

    Example 46: Using all three methods to calculate a capital gain

    On 1 July 1993, Tony bought 10,000 shares in Kimbin Ltd for $2 each. He paid brokerage of $250 and stamp duty of $50.

    On 1 July 2007, Kimbin Ltd offered each of its shareholders one right for each four shares owned to acquire shares in the company for $1.80 each. The market value of the shares at the time was $2.50. On 1 August 2007, Tony exercised all rights and paid $1.80 per share.

    On 1 December 2007, Tony sold all his shares in Kimbin Ltd for $3.00 each. He incurred brokerage of $500 and stamp duty of $50.

    Separate records

    Tony has two parcels of shares, those he acquired on 1 July 1993 and those he acquired at the time he exercised all rights, 1 August 2007. He needs to keep separate records for each parcel and apportion the sale brokerage of $500 and stamp duty of $50.

    The completed Capital gain or capital loss worksheets (PDF, 111KB) show how Tony can evaluate which method gives him the best result.

    He uses the 'other' method for the 2,500 shares he owned for less than 12 months, as he has no choice:

    $7,500
    capital proceeds

    $4,610
    cost base

    =

    $2,890
    capital gain

     

    For the 10,000 shares he has owned for 12 months or more, his capital gain using the indexation method would be:

    $30,000
    capital proceeds

    $23,257
    cost base

    =

    $6,743
    capital gain

     

    This means his net capital gain would be:

    $2,890
    'other' method

    +

    $6,743
    indexation method

    =

    $9,633
    net capital gain

     

    If Tony uses the discount method instead (assuming he has no capital losses), his capital gain would be:

    $30,000

    $20,740

    =

    $9,260

     

    He applies the CGT discount of 50%:

    $9,260 × 50% = $4,630

    This means his net capital gain would be:

    $2,890
    'other' method

    +

    $4,630
    discount method

    =

    $7,520
    net capital gain

     

    In this case, he would choose the discount method rather than the indexation method, as it gives him the better result (a lower net capital gain).

    End of example
    Dividend paid by a listed investment company (LIC) that includes LIC capital gain

    If a LIC pays a dividend to you that includes a LIC capital gain amount, you may be entitled to an income tax deduction.

    You can claim a deduction if:

    • you are an individual
    • you were an Australian resident when a LIC paid you a dividend, and
    • the dividend included a LIC capital gain amount.

    The amount of the deduction is 50% of the LIC capital gain amount. The LIC capital gain amount will be shown separately on your dividend statement.

    You do not show the LIC capital gain amount at item 18 on your tax return (supplementary section).

    Example 47: LIC capital gain

    Ben, an Australian resident, was a shareholder in XYZ Ltd, a LIC. For the 2012–13 income year, Ben received a fully franked dividend from XYZ Ltd of $70,000 including a LIC capital gain amount of $50,000. Ben includes on his tax return the following amounts:

    Franked dividend (written at T item 11 in his tax return)

    $70,000

    plus franking credit (written at U item 11 in his tax return)

    $30,000

     

    $100,000

    less 50% deduction for LIC capital gain (written as deduction at item D8 on his tax return)

    $25,000

    Net amount included in taxable income

    $75,000

     

    End of example

    Forestry managed investment scheme interests

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    This section explains your CGT obligations if:

    • you are a subsequent participant in a forestry managed investment scheme (FMIS), and
    • you sold or otherwise disposed of your forestry interests in an FMIS in the 2012–13 income year. 
    Attention

    Subsequent participant

    You are a subsequent participant if you are not an initial participant. In most cases, this means that you bought your forestry interest from an initial participant.

    You are an initial participant if:

    you obtained your forestry interest from the forestry manager of the scheme, and

    • your payment to obtain the forestry interest is used to establish trees.
    End of attention

    How CGT affects FMIS interests of subsequent participants

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    You can hold your forestry interest in one of two ways:

    • on revenue account (for example, if you are in the business of trading forestry interests), or
    • on capital account.

    If you hold your forestry interest on revenue account, there will be no CGT implications for the purchase and sale of your interest.

    If you hold your forestry interest on capital account, then the CGT treatment of your forestry interest is discussed below.

    Subsequent participant in an FMIS and forestry interest held on capital account

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention
    Treatment of costs for acquiring a forestry interest in an FMIS

    If you are a subsequent participant in an FMIS and hold your forestry interest on capital account, you are not able to claim a deduction for the costs of acquiring the forestry interest. Instead, you include these costs in the cost base or reduced cost base of your forestry interest for CGT purposes when the interest is subsequently disposed of prior to harvest or when the harvest proceeds are received.

    Example 48: Acquiring a forestry interest in a forestry managed investment scheme

    Julian acquires a forestry interest in Australian Forests Limited (AFL), an FMIS, from Caroline in August 2012 for $14,000 (at market value). As Julian did not purchase the interest from the forestry manager of the scheme, he is a subsequent participant and also holds the interest on capital account as he does not trade in securities.

    Julian is not entitled to a deduction for the $14,000 paid to Caroline for the acquisition of the interest. Instead, this amount will form part of the cost base or reduced cost base of the interest when Julian later sells the interest or receives harvest proceeds.

    End of example
    Ongoing costs of ownership

    You can claim a deduction for the ongoing costs of holding your forestry interest if the amounts would have been deductible were they paid by an initial participant. That is, you do not include these costs in your cost base or reduced cost base.

    Treatment of thinning receipts

    Amounts you receive for thinning are excluded from the CGT treatment of your forestry interest. These amounts are included in your assessable income. Include this amount at A item 23 Forestry managed investment scheme income on your tax return (supplementary section).

    Example 49: Treatment of ongoing fees and thinning receipts

    Julian pays $1,000 to AFL in annual management and services fees in each year of income after acquiring the interest from Caroline. These amounts are not included in the cost base or reduced cost base of the forestry interest and Julian can claim a deduction for these amounts. This is because Julian would have been able to deduct these amounts if he was an initial participant.

    Julian receives $1,500 for thinning in December 2012 from AFL. This amount is not subject to CGT and is instead included in his assessable income for the income year ended 30 June 2013.

    End of example
    Treatment of sale and harvest proceeds

    Amounts you receive from a CGT event that happens to your forestry interest, for example the sale of your forestry interest or as harvest proceeds, are capital proceeds for CGT purposes. See What are capital proceeds?

    Sale and harvest receipts – forestry interest no longer held

    If you cease to hold your forestry interest as a result of the CGT event, (for example you sell your interest or receive the harvest proceeds), you will also need to include at A item 23 Forestry managed investment scheme income on your tax return the lesser of the following two amounts:

    • the market value of your forestry interest (at the time of the CGT event)
    • the amount (if any) by which the total forestry scheme deductions (ongoing costs of ownership) exceeds the incidental forestry scheme receipts (for example, thinning).

    To work out any capital gain or capital loss, the cost base or reduced cost base of your forestry interest increases by this amount.

    Example 50: Sale of a forestry interest in an FMIS

    Julian is a subsequent participant who sells his forestry interest on 30 May 2013 at the market value of $20,000. He purchased the forestry interest for $14,000. A CGT event happens when he sells the forestry interest. The original cost base of his forestry interest is $14,000.

    While holding his forestry interest, he has claimed $4,000 in deductions (total forestry scheme deductions). This amount relates to lease fees, annual management fees, and the cost of felling that he has paid to the forestry manager. Julian has also received $1,500 as thinning proceeds (incidental forestry scheme receipts) during the same period. This amount was shown at A item 23 Forestry managed investment scheme income on his tax return for that income year.

    In 2012–13 Julian will also need to include $2,500 ($4,000 – $1,500) as income at A item 23 on his tax return, as this amount is less than the market value of the interest at the time of the sale ($20,000).

    Julian’s cost base increases from $14,000 to $16,500 ($14,000 + $2,500).

    Julian calculates the capital gain as follows:

    capital proceeds

    $20,000

    less cost base

    $16,500

    capital gain

    $3,500

     

    Julian may apply capital losses (if any) and the CGT discount (if applicable) to the capital gain in determining the net capital gain to be included in his assessable income at item 18 Capital gains on his tax return (supplementary section). See the sample worksheet (PDF, 98KB).

    End of example

    If you still hold your forestry interest after the CGT event, for example you sold part of your interest or you received partial harvest proceeds over two or more income years, you will need to apportion your income as follows:

    Step 1: Work out the following two amounts:

    • the market value of the forestry interest (at the time of the CGT event)
    • the amount (if any) by which the total forestry scheme deductions exceeds the incidental forestry scheme receipts.

    Step 2: Use the lesser of the two amounts above in the following formula:

    Amount worked out from step 1

    X

    The decrease (if any) in the market value
    of the forestry interest (as a result of the CGT event)
    The market value of the forestry interest
    just before the CGT event

     

    Step 3: Include the resulting amount at A item 23 Forestry managed investment scheme income on your tax return.

    Step 4: For CGT purposes, to calculate the new cost base or reduced cost base of your forestry interest:

    • apportion the original cost base and reduced cost base of your forestry interest by the change in market value of your forestry interest, and then
    • add the amount from step 3.

    This apportioned cost base or reduced cost base should then be used to calculate your capital gain or capital loss.

    Example 51: Harvest proceeds over two income years

    John is a subsequent participant who receives harvest proceeds over two income years. He receives his first harvest payment of $5,000 in the 2011–12 income year.

    The market value of John’s forestry interest is $20,000 just before he received his first harvest payment (which is a CGT event). After John received this first harvest payment, the market value of his forestry interest was reduced to $15,000. His original cost base was $14,000.

    In the time that he has held his interest, he has claimed $4,000 in deductions (his total forestry scheme deductions). This relates to lease fees, annual management fees and the cost of felling that he has paid to the forestry manager. John has also received $1,500 from thinning proceeds (his incidental forestry scheme receipts) in the same period.

    Step 1

    • the market value of the forestry interest (at the time of the CGT event) = $20,000
    • the amount by which the total forestry scheme deductions exceed the incidental forestry scheme receipts: $4,000 – $1,500 = $2,500

    The amount to use in step 2 of the calculation is $2,500

    Step 2

    $2,500

    X

    $5,000
    $20,000

    =

    $625

     

    Step 3

    John will need to include $625 at A item 23 Forestry managed investment scheme income on his tax return.

    Step 4

    The market value of John’s forestry interest has been reduced by 25%
    (5,000 ÷ 20,000 × 100).

    John’s adjusted cost base is:
    (25% × $14,000) + $625 = $4,125.

    Accordingly, he calculates his capital gain to be $5,000 – $4,125 = $875. This amount should be included in the calculation of John’s net capital gain or loss at item 18 Capital gains on his tax return.

    In the 2012–13 income year, John receives his final harvest payment (which is a CGT event) of $15,000. He has not paid any other fees in the 2012–13 income year.

    John will need to include the following amounts on his 2012–13 tax return:

    • the remainder of $1,875 (that is, $2,500 – $625) from step 2 at A item 23 Forestry managed investment scheme income
    • his capital gain of $2,625 (see below) in the calculation of his net capital gain or loss at item 18  

    Adjusted cost base:

     

    (75% × 14,000) + $1,875 =

    $12,375

    capital gain:

     

    capital proceeds

    $15,000

    less adjusted cost base

    $12,375

    Net capital gain

    $2,625

     

    End of example

    CGT and the TOFA rules

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The key provisions of the TOFA rules are found in Division 230 of the ITAA 1997.

    When will the TOFA rules affect an entity's tax return?

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The TOFA rules will apply to financial arrangements that an affected entity starts to have in its first income year commencing on or after 1 July 2010 (unless it elected for the rules to apply a year earlier).

    Which entities are affected?

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The TOFA rules will apply to you if you are:

    • an authorised deposit-taking institution, securitisation vehicle or financial sector entity with an aggregated annual turnover of $20 million or more
    • a superannuation entity, approved deposit fund, pooled superannuation fund, managed investment scheme or entity with a similar status under foreign law relating to foreign regulation, with assets of $100 million or more
    • any other entity (other than an individual) which satisfies one or more of the following
    • an aggregated turnover of $100 million or more
    • assets of $300 million or more
    • financial assets of $100 million or more.

    If you do not meet these requirements you can elect to have the TOFA rules apply to you.

    Key impacts on CGT

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Where the TOFA rules apply, they will have the following key impacts on CGT:

    • They may operate to modify the cost base or capital proceeds of a CGT asset.
    • A capital gain or capital loss made from a CGT asset that is a financial arrangement may be disregarded.
    • Certain gains and losses from hedging financial arrangements may be taxed under the CGT rules.

    TOFA and capital proceeds and cost base rules

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If the TOFA rules apply to you and you start or cease to have a financial arrangement as consideration for the disposal of a CGT asset, the TOFA rules will operate to determine the capital proceeds of the CGT asset. In general the rules operate to ensure your capital proceeds are the market value of the CGT asset at the time of its disposal.

    In the same the way, the TOFA rules may determine that the first element of your cost base and reduced cost base is the market value of the CGT asset at the time of its acquisition.

    The TOFA rules can also affect other elements of the cost base and reduced cost base if the financial arrangement represents consideration for something obtained which is relevant to the other elements of the cost base and reduced cost base.

    Example 52: TOFA and capital proceeds and cost base rules

    Both ABC Co and Aus Co are subject to the TOFA rules.

    On 1 July 2012, ABC Co enters into a contract to sell land to Aus Co for $250,000. Under the terms of the contract, title to the land passes in 6 months time on 1 January 2013, and payment is to be made on 1 July 2014 (that is, 18 months after title to the land passes). The market value of the land on 1 January 2013 is $200,000.

    On 1 January 2013 when ABC Co passes title of the land to Aus Co it will start to have a financial arrangement as consideration for the disposal of its land. The TOFA rules will operate so that ABC Co is taken to have received an amount equal to the market value of the land when it is provided. Therefore, ABC Co’s capital proceeds are $200,000. Similarly, Aus Co’s first element of its cost base is $200,000. For both ABC Co and Aus Co, the additional $50,000 relates to a financial arrangement which is taxed under the TOFA rules and is not subject to the CGT rules.

    End of example

    TOFA rules apply instead of CGT rules

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Where the TOFA rules determine there is a gain or loss from your financial arrangement that is a CGT asset, a capital gain or capital loss that is made from a CGT event is disregarded. In general, this does not apply for superannuation entities, where CGT remains the primary code for calculating gains and losses from financial arrangements.

    Hedging financial arrangements

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The TOFA rules provide for a hedging tax-timing method that allows gains and losses from certain hedging financial arrangements to be characterised and taxed in accordance with the tax treatment of the underlying item being hedged. For example, if a valid hedging tax-timing method election is in effect, gains or losses from a hedging financial arrangement used to hedge against risks associated with a CGT asset will be treated as a capital gain or capital loss on the same basis as the capital gain or capital loss on the underlying CGT asset that is being hedged. If this applies to you, specify the amount of the gains or losses from the relevant hedging financial arrangements on the Capital gains tax (CGT) schedule 2013.

    For more information see Guide to the taxation of financial arrangements (TOFA) rules

    End of find out more

    Real estate and main residence

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    This section explains your CGT obligations for real estate. Real estate includes vacant blocks of land, business premises, rental properties, holiday houses and hobby farms. The CGT exemption for a main residence is also explained in this section.

    Apart from the main residence rules, capital gains and capital losses on real estate are worked out under the rules set out earlier in this guide.

    Land is a CGT asset. In some cases, improvements made to land are treated as separate CGT assets, see Separate assets. A depreciating asset that is found in a building (for example, carpet or a hot-water system) is also taken to be a separate CGT asset from the building. When a CGT event happens to your property, you must work out a capital gain or capital loss for each CGT asset it comprises (or balancing adjustment in the case of depreciating assets sold with the property).

    The most common CGT event that happens to real estate is its sale or disposal, CGT event A1. The time of the event is:

    • when you enter into the contract for the disposal
    • if there is no contract, when the change of ownership occurs
    • if the asset is compulsorily acquired by an entity, the earliest of when
    • you received compensation from the entity
    • the entity became the asset’s owner
    • the entity entered it under a power of compulsory acquisition
    • the entity took possession under that power.

    If land is disposed of under a contract, it is taken to have been disposed of when the contract is entered into, not the settlement date. The fact that a contract is subject to a condition, such as finance approval, will generally not affect this date.

    You are not required to include any capital gain or capital loss on your tax return for the relevant income year until settlement occurs. When settlement occurs, you must include any capital gain or capital loss on your tax return for the income year in which the contract was made. If an assessment has already been made for that income year, you may need to have that assessment amended. Where an assessment is amended to include a net capital gain and a liability for shortfall interest charge (SIC) arises, remission of that interest charge will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Generally, it would be expected that the SIC would be remitted in full where requests for amendment are lodged within a reasonable time after the date of settlement, which, in most cases, is considered to be one month. If you consider that the SIC should be remitted, you should provide reasons why when you request the amendment to your assessment. More information about SIC is available at Shortfall interest charge – fact sheet.

    Attention

    New terms

    We may use some terms that are new to you. These words are explained in Definitions. Generally, they are also explained in detail in the section where they first appear.

    End of attention

    Rules to keep in mind

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    There are a few rules to keep in mind when you calculate your capital gain or capital loss from real estate, in particular rules relating to:

    • the costs of owning the real estate
    • cost base adjustments for capital works deductions.
    Costs of owning

    You do not include rates, insurance, land tax, maintenance and interest on money you borrowed to buy the property or finance improvements to it in the reduced cost base. You only include them in the cost base if you:

    • acquired the property under a contract entered into after 20 August 1991 (or if you didn’t acquire it under a contract, you became the owner after that date), and
    • could not claim a deduction for the costs because you did not use the property to produce assessable income, for example, it was vacant land, your main residence, or a holiday home during the period.
    Cost base adjustments for capital works deductions

    In working out a capital gain for property that you used to produce assessable income (such as a rental property or business premises) you may need to exclude from the cost base and reduced cost base capital works deductions you have claimed in any income year (or omitted to claim, but can still claim, because the period for amending the relevant income tax assessment has not expired).

    For information on when property (for example, a building, structure or other capital improvement to land) is treated for CGT purposes as a CGT asset separate from the land, see Does capital gains tax apply to you, and Major capital improvements to a dwelling acquired before 20 September 1985.

    You must exclude from the cost base of a CGT asset (including a building, structure or other capital improvement to land that is treated as a separate asset for CGT purposes) the amount of capital works deductions you claimed (or omitted to but can still claim because the period for amending the relevant income tax assessment has not expired) for the asset if you acquired the asset:

    • after 7.30pm (by legal time in the ACT) on 13 May 1997, or
    • before that time and the expenditure that gave rise to the capital works deductions was incurred after 30 June 1999.

    However, if you omitted to claim capital works deductions because you did not have sufficient information to determine the amount and nature of the construction expenditure, there is no need to exclude the amount of such deductions from the cost base of the CGT asset.

    Reduced cost base

    You exclude the amount of the capital works deductions you claimed (or omitted to claim but can still claim because the period for amending the relevant income tax assessment has not expired) from the reduced cost base. However if you omitted to claim capital works deductions because you did not have sufficient information to determine the amount and nature of the construction expenditure, there is no need to exclude the amount of such deductions from the reduced cost base of the CGT asset.

    Example 53: Capital works deduction

    Zoran acquired a rental property on 1 July 1997 for $200,000. Before disposing of the property on 30 June 2013, he had claimed $10,000 in capital works deductions.

    At the time of disposal, the cost base of the property was $210,250. Zoran must reduce the cost base of the property by $10,000 to $200,250.

    End of example
    Rollover

    There is no rollover or exemption for a capital gain you make when you sell an asset and put the proceeds into a superannuation fund, or use the proceeds to purchase an identical or similar asset, or you transfer an asset into a superannuation fund. For example, if you sell a rental property and put the proceeds into a superannuation fund, or use the proceeds to purchase another rental property, a rollover is not available. However, a rollover may be available in special circumstances, in particular for destruction or compulsory acquisition of property or marriage or relationship breakdown. However, an asset or the capital proceeds from the sale of an asset may be transferred into a superannuation fund in order to satisfy certain conditions under the small business retirement exemption. For more information about the CGT concessions for small business, see the Guide to capital gains tax concessions for small business 2013 (NAT 8384).

    Keeping records

    Keep appropriate records, see Records relating to real estate.

    Sale of a rental property

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The example below shows how you would calculate your capital gain on the sale of your rental property.

    The sample worksheet (PDF, 104KB) shows how you would complete the Capital gain or capital loss worksheet for this example.

    Example 54: Sale of a rental property

    Brett travelled interstate in February 1997 to inspect a number of properties and incurred travel and accommodation costs. He purchased one of the properties, a residential rental property, on 1 July 1997. The price he paid was $150,000, of which $6,000 was attributable to depreciating assets. He also paid $20,000 in total for pest and building inspections, stamp duty and solicitor’s fees.

    In the next few years, Brett incurred the following expenses on the property:

    interest on money borrowed

    $10,000

    rates and land tax

    $8,000

    deductible (non-capital) repairs

    $15,000

    Total

    $33,000

     

    Brett cannot include the expenses of $33,000 in the cost base, as he was able to claim a deduction for them. Nor can he include the travel and accommodation costs incurred before he acquired the property as they do not come within any of the five elements of the cost base, see Elements of the cost base.

    When Brett decided to sell the property, a real estate agent advised him that if he spent around $30,000 on major structural improvements, the property would be valued at around $500,000. The major structural improvements were completed on 1 October 2012 at a cost of $30,000.

    On 1 February 2013, he sold the property for $500,000 (of which $4,000 was attributable to depreciating assets).

    Brett could not claim any capital works deductions for the original construction costs, as construction of the property began before 18 July 1985. However, he could claim a capital works deduction of $255 ($30,000 × 2.5% × 124 ÷ 365) for the major structural improvements.

    For information about capital works that qualify for a deduction, see Rental properties 2013 (NAT 1729). For information about how capital works deductions affect the CGT cost base, see Cost base adjustments for capital works deductions.

    This is Brett’s only capital gain for the year, and he has no capital losses to offset from this income year or previous years.

    Brett works out his cost base as follows:

    purchase price of property (not including depreciating assets)

    $144,000

    plus

     

    pest and building inspections, stamp duty and solicitor’s fees on purchase of the property

    $20,000

    capital expenditure (major structural improvements) $30,000 less capital works deduction ($255)

    $29,745

    real estate agent’s fees and solicitor’s fees on sale of the property

    $12,500

    Cost base unindexed

    $206,245

     

    Brett deducts his cost base from his capital proceeds (sale price):

    proceeds from selling the house (not including depreciating assets)

    $496,000

    less
    cost base unindexed

    $206,245

     

    $289,755

     

    He decides the discount method will give him the best result, so he uses this method to calculate his capital gain:

    $289,755 X 50% = $144,877

    Brett writes $144,877 at A item 18 on his tax return (supplementary section).

    Brett writes $289,755 at H Total current year capital gains at item 18 on his tax return (supplementary section). Brett must also make balancing adjustment calculations for his depreciating assets. Because he used the property 100% for taxable purposes, he will not make a capital gain or capital loss from the depreciating assets.

    End of example
    Other CGT events affecting real estate

    CGT event B1 This happens to real estate if you enter into an agreement where the new owner is entitled to possession of the land or the receipt of rents and profits before becoming entitled to a transfer or conveyance of the land.

    Where this happens under a contract, it is known as a ‘terms contract’ and the new owner usually completes the purchase by paying the balance of the purchase price and receiving the instrument of transfer and title deeds.

    It may also happen where an agreement is made with a relative or other party to use and enjoy the property for a specified period, after which title to the property passes to them. It will not happen where, under an arrangement, title to a property may pass at an unspecified time in the future.

    CGT event B1 happens when use and enjoyment of the land is first obtained by the new owner. Use and enjoyment of the land from a practical point of view takes place at the time the new owner gets possession of the land or the date the new owner becomes entitled to the receipt of rents and profits.

    If the agreement falls through before completion and title to the land does not pass to the new owner, you may be entitled to amend your assessment for the year in which CGT event B1 happened.

    CGT event C1 This happens if an asset is lost or destroyed. This event may happen if, for example, a building on your land is destroyed by fire. Your capital proceeds for CGT event C1 happening include any insurance proceeds you may receive for the loss or destruction. The market value substitution rule for capital proceeds that generally applies if you receive no capital proceeds does not apply if CGT event C1 happens. For more information, see Loss, destruction or compulsory acquisition of an asset.

    CGT event D1 This happens if you give someone a right to reside in a dwelling. The capital proceeds include money (but not rent) and the value of any property you receive.

    The market value substitution rule for capital proceeds (see Definitions) applies if:

    • the amount of capital proceeds you receive is more or less than the market value of the right, and
    • you and the person you granted the right to were not dealing with each other at arm’s length in connection with the event.

    CGT event D2 happens if you grant an option to a person or an entity, or renew or extend an option that you had granted.

    The amount of your capital gain or capital loss from CGT event D2 is the difference between what you receive for granting the right and any expenditure you incurred on it. The CGT discount does not apply to CGT event D2.

    Example 55: Granting of an option

    You were approached by Colleen, who was interested in buying your land. On 30 June 2012, you granted her an option to purchase your land within 12 months for $200,000. Colleen pays you $10,000 for the grant of the option. You incur legal fees of $500. You made a capital gain in the 2011–12 income year of $9,500.

    End of example

    Exercise of an option

    If the option you granted is later exercised, you ignore any capital gain or capital loss you made from the grant, renewal or extension. You may have to amend your income tax assessment for an earlier income year.

    Similarly, any capital gain or capital loss that the grantee would otherwise make from the exercise of the option is disregarded.

    The effect of the exercise of an option depends on whether the option was a ‘call option’ or a ‘put option’. A call option is one that binds the grantor to dispose of an asset. A put option binds the grantor to acquire an asset.

    Example 56: Granting of an option (continued)

    On 1 February 2013, Colleen exercised the option you granted her. You disregard the capital gain that you made in 2011–12 income year and you request an amendment of your income tax assessment to exclude that amount. The $10,000 you received for the grant of the option is considered to be part of the capital proceeds for the sale of your property in the 2012–13 income year. Your capital gain or capital loss from the property is the difference between its cost base/reduced cost base and $210,000.

    End of example

    CGT event D4 happens if you enter into a conservation covenant after 15 June 2000 over land that you own and if you receive capital proceeds for entering into the covenant.

    From 1 July 2002, CGT event D4 also happens if you receive no capital proceeds for entering into the covenant and you can claim a tax deduction for entering into the covenant. One of the conditions for a tax deduction is that the covenant is entered into with a deductible gift recipient or an Australian Government agency (that is, the Commonwealth, a state, a territory or one of their authorities).

    A ‘conservation covenant’ is a covenant that:

    • restricts or prohibits certain activities on the land that could degrade the environmental value of the land
    • is permanent and binding on current and future land owners (by way of registration on the title to the land where possible), and
    • is approved by the Environment Minister (including those entered into under a program approved by that Minister).

    If CGT event D4 happens, you calculate your capital gain by comparing your capital proceeds from entering into the covenant with the portion of the cost base of the land that is attributable to the covenant.

    Similarly, you calculate your capital loss by comparing your capital proceeds from entering into the covenant with the portion of the reduced cost base of the land that is attributable to the covenant.

    Attention

    The market value substitution rule for capital proceeds that generally applies if you receive no consideration for a CGT event does not apply if CGT event D4 happens. Instead, the capital proceeds are equal to the amount you can claim as a tax deduction for entering into the covenant.

    End of attention

    Calculate the relevant portion of the cost base and reduced cost base attributable to the covenant using this formula:

    Cost base
    (reduced cost base)

    x

    capital proceeds from entering into the covenant over land
    those capital proceeds plus the market value of the land
    just after you enter into the covenant

     

    As the conservation covenant will affect the value of the entire land you must use the cost base of the entire land in calculating the cost base apportioned to the covenant. This is the case even if the covenant specifically states within its terms that the restrictions as to use only apply to part of the land.

    CGT event D4 will not happen if you receive no capital proceeds and the conditions for a tax deduction for entering into the covenant are not satisfied. In this case, CGT event D1 will apply.

    CGT events involving leases

    There are a number of CGT events that may apply to the lease of land.

    CGT event F1 This happens if you grant a lease to a person or entity or if you extend or renew a lease that you had previously granted. In the case of a long-term lease (one that may be expected to continue for at least 50 years), you can choose to treat the grant (renewal or extension) of the lease as a part disposal of the underlying leased property.

    Example 57: Receiving an amount for granting a lease

    Elisabeth operates a profitable footwear retailing business, and wishes to lease some shop space in a prestigious location in the Sydney CBD. However, the demand for shop space in the locality is great, and competition between prospective tenants is fierce. In order to ensure that she secures the lease of the particular shop space that she wants, Elisabeth pays John (the owner of the shop space) a premium of $6,000 in consideration for the grant of that particular lease.

    She enters into the lease on 6 September 2008, and John incurs stamp duty of $300 and solicitor’s fees of $500 on the grant of the lease.

    John makes a capital gain of $5,200 from CGT event F1

    capital proceeds:

    $6,000

    less incidental costs: (that is, stamp duty of $300 and solicitors fees of $500)

    $800

    capital gain

    $5,200

     

    For Elisabeth, this transaction results in CGT event C2 when the lease expires.

    End of example

    The amount of your capital gain or capital loss from CGT event F1 is the difference between any premium you got for granting the lease and the expenditure you incurred in granting it. The CGT discount does not apply to CGT event F1. The market value substitution rule for capital proceeds that generally applies if you receive no consideration for a CGT event does not apply if CGT event F1 happens.

    CGT event F2 You can choose for CGT event F2 to apply (rather than CGT event F1) when you grant, renew or extend a long-term lease. It can apply if you are the owner of the underlying land or if you grant a sub-lease.

    Your capital proceeds if CGT event F2 happens are the greatest of:

    • the market value of the freehold or head lease (at the time you grant, renew or extend the lease)
    • the market value if you had not granted, renewed or extended the lease
    • any premium from the grant, renewal or extension.

    There are special cost base rules that apply if you choose for CGT event F2 to apply.

    For any later CGT event that happens to the land or the lessor’s lease of it, its cost base and reduced cost base (including the cost base and reduced cost base of any building, part of a building, structure or improvement that is treated as a separate CGT asset) excludes:

    • any expenditure incurred before CGT event F2 happens
    • the cost of any depreciating asset for which the lessor has deducted or can deduct an amount for its decline in value.

    The fourth element of the property’s cost base and reduced cost base includes any payment by the lessor to the lessee to vary or waive a term of the lease or for the forfeiture or surrender of the lease, reduced by the amount of any input tax credit to which the lessor is entitled for the variation or waiver.

    CGT event F3 This happens if you make a payment to a lessee to vary a lease. You can only make a capital loss from this CGT event. Your capital loss is equal to the expenditure you incurred to change the lease.

    CGT event F4 This happens if you (as lessee) receive a payment from the lessor for agreeing to vary or waive a term of the lease.

    You cannot make a capital loss from this CGT event. You will only make a capital gain from CGT event F4 if the amount of the payment you received exceeds the cost base of your lease at the time when the term is varied. In other cases, you will be required to adjust the cost base of your lease.

    The market value substitution rule for capital proceeds that applies if you do not receive market value for a CGT event does not apply if CGT event F4 happens.

    Example 58: Payment to lessee for change in lease

    Sam is the lessor of a commercial property. His tenant, Peter, currently holds a three-year lease over the property, which has another 26 months to run. A business associate of Sam’s wishes to lease the property from Sam for a 10-year period, beginning in six months’ time, for twice the rent that Peter is currently paying. Sam approaches Peter with an offer of $5,000 cash for Peter to agree to vary the terms of the lease so that the lease will expire in six months’ time. Peter agrees to vary the terms on 10 August 2012.

    Sam will make a capital loss of $5,000 from CGT event F3 happening:

    capital proceeds:

    $0

    less incidental costs and expenditure incurred:

    $5,000

    Capital gain or loss

    –$5,000

     

    For Peter, this transaction results in CGT event F4 happening. The cost base of Peter’s lease at the time of the variation was $500. He makes a capital gain of $4,500 ($5,000 – $500).

    End of example

    You disregard any capital loss you make from the expiry, forfeiture, surrender or assignment of a lease (except one granted for 99 years or more) if you did not use it solely or mainly for the purpose of producing assessable income, for example, if you used it for private purposes.

    CGT event F5 This happens if you, as lessor, receive a payment for changing a lease.

    The amount of your capital gain or capital loss from CGT event F5 is the difference between what you receive for changing the lease and any expenditure you incurred on it. The CGT discount does not apply to CGT event F5.

    Subdivision of land

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you subdivide a block of land, each block that results is registered with a separate title. For CGT purposes, the original land parcel is divided into two or more separate assets. Subdividing land does not result in a CGT event if you retain ownership of the subdivided blocks. Therefore, you do not make a capital gain or a capital loss at the time of the subdivision.

    However, you may make a capital gain or capital loss when you sell the subdivided blocks. The date you acquired the subdivided blocks is the date you acquired the original parcel of land and the cost base of the original land is divided between the subdivided blocks on a reasonable basis.

    For more information on what is considered 'a reasonable basis' read Taxation Determination TD 97/3External Link Income tax: capital gains: if a parcel of land acquired after 19 September 1985 is subdivided into lots ('blocks'), do Parts 3-1 and 3-3 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 treat a disposal of a block of the subdivided land as the disposal of part of an asset (the original land parcel) or the disposal of an asset in its own right (the subdivided block)?

    Attention

    When the profit is ordinary income

    You may have made a profit from the subdivision and sale of land which occurred in the ordinary course of your business or which involved a commercial transaction or business operation entered into with the purpose of making a profit. In this case, the profit is ordinary income (see Taxation Ruling TR 92/3External Link – Income tax: whether profits on isolated transactions are income). You reduce any capital gain from the land by the amount otherwise included in your assessable income.

    End of attention

    Example 59: Land purchased before 20 September 1985, land subdivided after that date and house built on subdivided land

    In 1983, Mike bought a block of land that was less than two hectares. He subdivided the land into two blocks in May 2008 and began building a house on the rear block, which he finished in August 2008 and did not use as his main residence. He sold the rear block (including the house) in October 2008 for $250,000. Mike got a valuation from a qualified valuer who valued the rear block at $150,000 and the house at $100,000. The construction cost of the house was $85,000.

    Mike acquired the rear block before 20 September 1985, so it is not subject to CGT. As the new house was constructed after 20 September 1985 on land purchased before that date, the house is taken to be a separate asset from the land. Mike is taken to have acquired the house in May 2008, when he began building it. Mike made a capital gain of $15,000 ($100,000 – $85,000) when he sold the house because he did not use it as his main residence.

    As Mike had owned the house for less than 12 months, he used the 'other' method to calculate his capital gain.

    End of example

    Example 60: Dwelling purchased on or after 20 September 1985 and land subdivided after that date

    Kym bought a house on a 0.2 hectare block of land in June 2008 for $350,000. The house was valued at $120,000 and the land at $230,000. Kym lived in the house as her main residence. She incurred $12,000 in stamp duty and legal fees purchasing the property.

    Kym found the block was too big for her to maintain. In January 2009, she subdivided the land into two blocks of equal size. She incurred $10,000 in survey, legal and subdivision application fees, and $1,000 to connect water and drainage to the rear block. In March 2009, she sold the rear block for $130,000.

    As Kym sold the rear block of land separately, the main residence exemption does not apply to that land. She contacted several local real estate agents who advised her that the value of the front block was $15,000 higher than the rear block. Kym apportioned the $230,000 original cost base into $107,500 for the rear block (46.7%) and $122,500 for the front block (53.3%). Kym incurred $3,000 legal fees on the sale.

    The cost base of the rear block is calculated as follows:

    cost of the land

    $107,500

    plus
    46.7% of the $12,000 stamp duty and legal fees on the purchase

    $5,604

    plus
    46.7% of the $10,000 cost of survey, legal and application fees

    $4,670

    plus
    cost of connecting water and drainage

    $1,000

    plus
    legal fees on sale

    $3,000

    Total

    $121,774

     

    The capital gain on the sale of the rear block is $8,226. She calculates this by subtracting the cost base ($121,774) from the sale price ($130,000). As Kym had owned the land for less than 12 months, she uses the 'other' method to calculate her capital gain.

    Kym will get the full exemption for her house and the front block if she uses them as her main residence for the full period she owns them.

    End of example

    Amalgamation of title

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The amalgamation of the titles to various blocks of land that you own does not result in a CGT event happening.

    Land you acquired before 20 September 1985 that is amalgamated with land acquired on or after that date retains its pre-CGT status.

    Example 61: Amalgamation of title

    On 1 April 1984, Robert bought a block of land. On 1 June 2008, he bought another block adjacent to the first one. Robert amalgamated the titles to the two blocks into one title.

    Robert is taken to have two separate assets. The first block continues to be treated as a pre-CGT asset.

    End of example
    Examples of CGT calculations affecting real estate

    There are a number of other examples in this guide that explain how to calculate your capital gain or capital loss on the sale of real estate:

    • calculation of capital gain (including worksheet), where a person can choose the indexation or discount method to calculate their capital gain, see example 13
    • calculation of capital gain on property owned for 12 months or less, see example 9
    • recoupment of expenditure affecting CGT cost base calculation, see example 6
    • deductions affecting CGT cost base calculations, see example 53 and example 54.

    Main residence

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Generally, if you are an individual (not a company or trust) you can ignore a capital gain or capital loss from a CGT event that happens to your ownership interest in a dwelling that is your main residence (also referred to as ‘your home’). However, special rules apply if the interest in the dwelling is held by the trustee of a Special Disability Trust. In such cases, the trustee of the Special Disability Trust will be eligible for any main residence exemption to the extent the individual principal beneficiary of the Special Disability Trust would have been if that individual principal beneficiary owned the interest in the dwelling.

    To get the full exemption from CGT:

    • the dwelling must have been your home for the whole period you owned it
    • you must not have used the dwelling to produce assessable income, and
    • any land on which the dwelling is situated must be two hectares or less.

    If you inherited a dwelling or a share of a dwelling and it was not the deceased’s main residence, you may not get a full exemption (see flowchart 3.6 in appendix 3, and Inherited main residence).

    If you are not fully exempt, you may be partially exempt if:

    • the dwelling was your main residence during only part of the period you owned it
    • you used the dwelling to produce assessable income, or
    • the land on which the dwelling is situated is more than two hectares.

    Short absences from your home (for example, annual holidays) do not affect your exemption.

    If a dwelling was not your main residence for the whole time you owned it, some special rules may entitle you to a full exemption or to extend the partial exemption you would otherwise get. These rules can apply to land or a dwelling if you:

    Special rules

    There are some special CGT rules that are not covered in this section that may affect you if your home was:

    If you own more than one dwelling during a particular period, only one of them can be your main residence at any one time.

    The exception to this rule is if you move from one main residence to another. In this case you can treat two dwellings as your main residence for a limited time (see Moving from one main residence to another). Special rules apply if you have a different main residence from your spouse or dependent children (see Having a different home from your spouse or dependent child).

    What is a dwelling?

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    A dwelling is anything that is used wholly or mainly for residential accommodation. Certain mobile homes can also be a dwelling. Examples of a dwelling are:

    • a home or cottage
    • an apartment or flat
    • a strata title unit
    • a unit in a retirement village
    • a caravan, houseboat or other mobile home.

    Any land the dwelling is on is included as part of the dwelling, but it only qualifies for the main residence exemption if the land and the dwelling are sold together. Also, the exemption applies to a maximum of two hectares of land (including the land on which the dwelling is built). Any excess is subject to CGT. Land adjacent to the dwelling may also qualify for an exemption.

    What is an ownership interest?

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    In the case of a flat or home unit, you have an ownership interest if you have a:

    • legal or equitable interest in a strata title in the flat or home unit
    • licence or right to occupy the flat or home unit, or
    • share in a company that owns a legal or equitable interest in the land on which the flat or home unit is constructed and that share gives you a right to occupy the flat or home unit.

    In the case of a dwelling that is not a flat or home unit, you have an ownership interest if you have a:

    • legal or equitable interest in the land on which it is constructed, or
    • licence or right to occupy it.

    In the case of land, you have an ownership interest if you have a:

    • legal or equitable interest in it, or
    • right to occupy it.

    An equitable interest may include life tenancy of a dwelling that you acquire, for example, under a deceased’s will.

    When do you acquire an ownership interest?

    For the purposes of the main residence exemption, you have an ownership interest in a dwelling or land you acquire under a contract from the time you get legal ownership (unless you have a right to occupy it at an earlier time).

    You have legal ownership of a dwelling or land from the date of settlement of the contract of purchase (or if you have a right to occupy it at an earlier time, that time) until the date of settlement of the contract of sale. This period is called your ownership period. If the dwelling is on two hectares of land or less, is your main residence for the whole of the ownership period and you do not use it to produce assessable income, the home is fully exempt.

    Example 62: Full exemption

    Frank signed a contract on 14 August 1999 to purchase 0.1 hectare of land from a developer and to have a house constructed on the land. Under the contract, settlement did not occur until construction was completed on 26 October 2000.

    Frank moved into the house immediately upon settlement of the contract he had with the developer, that is, on 26 October 2000. He did not have a right to occupy the house at an earlier time under the purchase contract. He signed the contract to sell it on 25 May 2013 and settlement occurred on 20 July 2013. The house was Frank’s main residence for the full period he owned it and he did not use any part of it to produce income.

    For CGT purposes, Frank is taken to have acquired the land on which the house was constructed on the date he entered into the contract, 14 August 1999. However, because the house was Frank’s main residence for the whole period between settlement of the purchase contract and settlement of the sale contract, it is fully exempt.

    The period between when Frank entered into the purchase contract and started to live in the house (14 August 1999 to 25 October 2000) is ignored. This is because the relevant dates for the main residence exemption are the settlement dates or, if you had a right under the purchase contract to occupy the dwelling at an earlier time, that time until settlement of the sale contract.

    End of example

    Even though the settlement dates are used to calculate the period for which the main residence exemption applies, the dates you enter into the purchase and sale contracts are important.

    A CGT event occurs when you enter into the sale contract. You include any capital gain on your tax return for the income year in which the CGT event occurs. The dates you enter into the purchase and sale contracts are also relevant for determining what method you can use to work out your capital gain from your main residence.

    Example 63: Partial exemption

    The facts are the same as in the previous example except that Frank rented out the house from 26 October 2000, the date of settlement of the purchase contract, until 2 March 2002.

    Frank makes a capital gain of $90,000 on the house. To work out the part of the capital gain that is not exempt, Frank must determine how many days in his ownership period the dwelling was not his main residence.

    Frank had an ownership interest in the property from settlement of the purchase contract (26 October 2000) until settlement of the sale contract (20 July 2013), a total of 4,651 days.

    The period between the dates the purchase contract was signed (14 August 1999) and settled (25 October 2000) is ignored. Because the house was not Frank’s main residence from 26 October 2000 to 2 March 2002 (493 days), he does not get the exemption for this period.

    Frank calculates his capital gain as follows:

    $90,000
    capital gain

    x

    493 days
    4,651

    =

    $9,540
    taxable portion

     

    Because Frank entered into the purchase contract before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and entered into the sale contract after owning the house for at least 12 months, he can choose either the indexation or the discount method to calculate his capital gain. Frank decides to reduce his capital gain by the CGT discount of 50% after applying any capital losses.

    Because Frank signed the sale contract on 25 May 2013, the CGT event occurred in the 2012–13 income year, even though settlement occurred in the next income year. Frank writes the capital gain on his 2013 tax return.

    End of example

    Is the dwelling your main residence?

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The following factors may be relevant in working out whether a dwelling is your main residence:

    • the length of time you live there (there is no minimum time a person has to live in a home before it is considered to be their main residence)
    • whether your family lives there
    • whether you have moved your personal belongings into the home
    • the address to which your mail is delivered
    • your address on the electoral roll
    • the connection of services (for example, phone, gas or electricity)
    • your intention in occupying the dwelling.

    A mere intention to construct or occupy a dwelling as your main residence, without actually doing so, is not sufficient to get the exemption.

    In certain circumstances, you may choose to treat a dwelling as your main residence even though:

    Moving into a dwelling

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    A dwelling is considered to be your main residence from the time you acquired your ownership interest in it if you moved into it as soon as practicable after that time. If you purchased the dwelling, this would generally be the date of settlement of the purchase contract. However, if there is a delay in moving in because of illness or other unforeseen circumstances, the exemption may still be available from the time you acquired your ownership interest in the dwelling.

    If you could not move in because the dwelling was being rented to someone, you are not considered to have moved in as soon as practicable after you acquired your ownership interest.

    As mentioned earlier, there is a special rule that allows you to treat more than one dwelling as your main residence for a limited time if you are changing main residences (see Moving from one main residence to another).

    Example 64: Moving in as soon as practicable

    Mary signs a contract to buy a townhouse on 1 March 2013. She is to take possession when settlement occurs on 30 April 2013.

    On 11 March 2013, Mary is directed by her employer to go overseas on an assignment for four months, leaving on 25 March 2013. Mary moves into the townhouse on her return to Australia in late July 2013.

    Mary’s overseas assignment was unforeseen at the time of purchasing the property. As she moved in as soon as practicable after settlement of the contract occurred, Mary can treat the townhouse as her main residence from the date of settlement until she moved in.

    End of example

    Land adjacent to the dwelling

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The land adjacent to a dwelling is also exempt if:

    • during the period you owned it, the land is used mainly for private and domestic purposes in association with the dwelling, and
    • the total area of the land around the dwelling, including the land on which it stands, is not greater than two hectares. If the land used for private purposes is greater than two hectares, you can choose which two hectares are exempt but the land you choose must include the land on which the dwelling is built.

    Land is adjacent to your dwelling if it is close to, near, adjoining or neighbouring the dwelling.

    If you sell any of the land adjacent to your dwelling separately from the dwelling, the land is not exempt. It is only exempt when sold with the dwelling. There is an exception if the dwelling is accidentally destroyed and you sell the vacant land or vacant land adjacent to your dwelling is compulsorily acquired (see Destruction of dwelling and sale of land) and Compulsory acquisition of part of your main residence.

    Any part of the land around a dwelling used to produce income is not exempt, even if the total land is less than two hectares. However, the dwelling and any buildings and other land used in association with it remain exempt if you do not use them to produce income.

    Example 65: Land used for private purposes

    Tim bought a home with 15 hectares of land in November 2000. He uses 10 hectares of the land to produce income and five hectares for private purposes. Tim can get the main residence exemption for the home and two hectares of land he selects out of the five hectares that are used for private purposes.

    Tim gets a valuation which states that the home and two hectares of land that he has selected are worth two-thirds of the total value of the property. The relative values of the different parts of the property remained the same between the time of purchase and the time of sale.

    Tim entered into a contract to sell the property on 8 May 2013. The capital gain from the property is $150,000. Tim may claim the main residence exemption on the two-thirds of the capital gain attributable to the house and two hectares of land, that is, $100,000.

    Because he entered into the contract to acquire the property after 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and owned it for at least 12 months, Tim reduces his remaining $50,000 gain (attributable to the land) by the CGT discount of 50% after applying any capital losses.

    End of example

    Other structures associated with the dwelling

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    A flat or home unit often includes areas (for example, a laundry, storeroom or garage) that are physically separate from the flat or home unit. As long as you use these areas primarily for private or domestic purposes in association with the flat or home unit for the whole period you own it, they are exempt on the same basis that the flat or home unit is exempt.

    However, if you dispose of one of these structures separately from the flat or home unit, they are not exempt. If one of these structures is compulsorily acquired without your flat or home unit also being acquired, see Compulsory acquisitions of part of your main residence.

    Partial exemption

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention
    Main residence for only part of the period you owned it

    If a CGT event happens to a dwelling you acquired on or after 20 September 1985 and that dwelling was not your main residence for the whole time you owned it, you get only a partial exemption.

    You calculate the part of the capital gain that is taxable as follows:

    total capital gain made from the CGT event

    x

    number of days in your ownership period
    when the dwelling was not your main residence
    total number of days in your ownership period

     

    Example 66: Main residence for part of the ownership period

    Andrew bought a house on 1 hectare of land under a contract that was settled on 1 July 1990 and moved in immediately. On 1 July 1993, he moved out and began to rent out the house. He did not choose to treat the house as his main residence for the period after he moved out, although he could have done this under the continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence rule. The home first used to produce income rule does not apply because Andrew used the home to produce income before 21 August 1996.

    A contract for the sale of the house was entered into on 1 July 2012 and settled on 31 August 2012 and Andrew made a capital gain of $100,000. As he is entitled to a partial exemption, Andrew’s capital gain is as follows:

    $100,000

    x

    7,002 days
    8,098 days

    =

    $86,465

     

    As Andrew entered into the contract to acquire the house before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 but the CGT event occurred after this date, and he had owned the house for at least 12 months, Andrew can choose to use the discount method or the indexation method to calculate his capital gain.

    End of example

    If a dwelling was not your main residence for the whole time you owned it, some special rules may entitle you to a full exemption or to extend the partial exemption you would otherwise get. These rules apply to land or a dwelling if you:

    Dwelling used to produce income

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Usually, you cannot get the full main residence exemption if you:

    • acquired your dwelling on or after 20 September 1985 and used it as your main residence
    • used any part of it to produce income during all or part of the period you owned it, and
    • would be allowed a deduction for interest had you incurred it on money borrowed to acquire the dwelling (interest deductibility test).

    The interest deductibility test applies regardless of whether you actually borrowed money to acquire your dwelling. You must apply it on the assumption that you did borrow money to acquire the dwelling.

    If you rent out part of your home, you would be entitled to deduct part of the interest if you had borrowed money to acquire the dwelling.

    If you run a business or professional practice in part of your home, you would be entitled to deduct part of the interest on money you borrowed to acquire the dwelling if:

    • part of the dwelling is set aside exclusively as a place of business and is clearly identifiable as such, and
    • that part of the home is not readily adaptable for private use, for example, a doctor’s surgery located within the doctor’s home.

    You would not be entitled to deduct any interest expenses if, for convenience, you use a home study to undertake work usually done at your place of work. Similarly, you would not be entitled to deduct interest expenses if you do paid child-minding at home (unless a special part of the home was set aside exclusively for that purpose). In these situations, you could still get a full main residence exemption.

    Example 67: Renting out part of a home

    Thomas purchased a home under a contract that was settled on 1 July 1999 and sold it under a contract that was settled on 30 June 2013. The home was his main residence for the entire fourteen years.

    Throughout the period Thomas owned the home, a tenant rented one bedroom, which represented 20% of the home. Both Thomas and the tenant used the living room, bathroom, laundry and kitchen, which represented 30% of the home. Only Thomas used the remainder of the home. Therefore, Thomas would be entitled to a 35% deduction for interest if he had incurred it on money borrowed to acquire his home. The home first used to produce income rule does not apply because Thomas used the home to produce income from the date he purchased it.

    Thomas made a capital gain of $120,000 when he sold the home. Of this total gain, the following proportion is not exempt:

    capital gain

    x

    percentage of floor area

    =

    taxable portion

    $120,000

    x

    35%

    =

    $42,000

     

    As Thomas entered into the contract to acquire the home before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999, and entered into the contract to sell it after he had held it for at least 12 months, he can use either the indexation or the discount method to calculate his capital gain.

    End of example

    If you set aside and use part of the dwelling exclusively as a place of business, you cannot get a CGT exemption for that part of the dwelling by not claiming a deduction for the interest. Nor can you include interest in the cost base if you are entitled to a deduction but do not claim it.

    You can still get a full main residence exemption if someone else uses part of your home to produce income and you receive no income from that person.

    When a CGT event happens to the home, the proportion of the capital gain or capital loss that is taxable is an amount that is reasonable according to the extent to which you would have been able to deduct the interest on money borrowed to acquire the home.

    In most cases, this is the proportion of the floor area of the home that is set aside to produce income and the period you use the home to produce income. This includes if the dwelling is available (for example, advertised) for rent.

    Example 68: Running a business in part of a home for part of the period of ownership

    Ruth bought her home under a contract that was settled on 1 January 1999. She sold it under a contract that was entered into on 1 November 2012 and was settled on 31 December 2012. It was her main residence for the entire fourteen years.

    From the time she bought it until 31 December 2005 Ruth used part of the home to operate her photographic business. She modified the rooms for that purpose and they were no longer suitable for private and domestic use. They represented 25% of the total floor area of the home.

    When she sold the home, Ruth made a capital gain of $80,000. The following proportion of the gain is taxable:

    capital gain

    x

    percentage of floor area not used as main residence

    x

    percentage of period of ownership that that part of the home was not used as main residence

    =

    taxable portion

    $80,000

    x

    25%

    x

    50%

    =

    $10,000

     

    As Ruth entered into the contract to acquire the home before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999, and entered into the contract to sell it after she had held it for at least 12 months, she can use either the indexation or discount method to calculate her capital gain.

    The ‘home first used to produce income’ rule does not apply, because Ruth used the home to produce income from the date she purchased it.

    End of example

    For more information on rental properties (for example, negative gearing and deductions), see Rental properties 2013

    End of find out more
    Home first used to produce income 

    If you start using part or all of your main residence to produce income for the first time after 20 August 1996, a special rule affects the way you calculate your capital gain or capital loss.

    In this case, you are taken to have acquired the dwelling at its market value at the time you first used it to produce income if all of the following apply:

    • you acquired the dwelling on or after 20 September 1985
    • you first used the dwelling to produce income after 20 August 1996
    • when a CGT event happens to the dwelling, you would get only a partial exemption, because you used the dwelling to produce assessable income during the period you owned it, and
    • you would have been entitled to a full exemption if the CGT event happened to the dwelling immediately before you first used it to produce income.

    If all of the above apply, you must work out your capital gain or capital loss using the market value of the dwelling at the time you first used it to produce income. You do not have a choice.

    A similar rule applies if you inherit a dwelling that was the deceased’s main residence and you use it to produce income, see Using a home you inherited to produce income.

    Attention

    Full exemption

    You may have made the choice to treat a dwelling as your main residence after the dwelling ceases to be your main residence (see Continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence). In this case, if the dwelling is fully exempt, the ‘home first used to produce income’ rule does not apply.

    End of attention

    In working out the amount of capital gain or capital loss, the period before the dwelling is first used by you to produce income is not taken into account. The extent of the exemption depends on the period after that time and the proportion of the home used to produce income. The following three examples explain this.

    If the ‘home first used to produce income’ rule applies and the period between when you first used the dwelling to produce income and the CGT event happening is less than 12 months, the CGT discount method is not available.

    Example 69: Home becomes a rental property after 20 August 1996

    Erin purchased a home on 0.9 hectares of land in July 2000 for $280,000. The home was her main residence until she moved into a new home on 1 August 2003. On 2 August 2003, she commenced to rent out the old home. At that time, the market value of the old home was $450,000.

    Erin does not want to treat the old home as her main residence (see Continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence) as she wants the new home to be treated as her main residence from when she moved into it.

    On 14 April 2013, Erin sold the old home for $496,000. Erin is taken to have acquired the old home for $450,000 on 2 August 2003, and calculates her capital gain to be $46,000.

    Because Erin is taken to have acquired the old home on 2 August 2003 and has held it for more than 12 months, she can use the discount method to calculate her capital gain. As Erin has no capital losses, she includes a capital gain of $23,000 on her 2013 tax return.

    End of example

    Example 70: Part of home first used to produce income after 20 August 1996

    Louise purchased a home in December 1991 for $200,000. The home was her main residence. On 1 November 2011, she started to use 50% of the home for a consultancy business. At that time the market value of the house was $320,000.

    She decided to sell the property in August 2012 for $350,000. As Louise was still living in the home, she could not get a full exemption under the continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence rule. The capital gain is 50% of the proceeds less the cost base.

    percentage of use

    x

    (proceeds – cost base)

    =

    capital gain

    50%

    x

    ($350,000 – $320,000)

    =

    $15,000

     

    Louise is taken to have acquired the property on 1 November 2011 at a cost of $320,000. Because she is taken to have acquired it at this time, Louise is taken to have owned it for less than 12 months and must use the 'other' method to calculate her capital gain.

    End of example

    If you make the choice to continue to treat a dwelling as your main residence after it ceases to be your main residence (see Continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence), and you do not get a full exemption, the ‘home first used to produce income’ rule may apply.

    Example 71: Dwelling used to produce income for more than six years and first used to produce income after 20 August 1996

    Roya purchased an apartment in Australia for $280,000 under a contract that was settled on 15 September 1994, and immediately started using the apartment as her main residence.

    On 29 September 1996, she moved overseas and began renting out the apartment. During the time she was overseas, she did not acquire another dwelling and continued to rent out the apartment. After she returned to Australia in July 2012, she sold the apartment for $555,000. Settlement occurred on 29 September 2012 and she incurred $15,000 in real estate agent’s and solicitor’s costs.

    As Roya rented out the apartment, she is only entitled to choose to continue to treat the dwelling as her main residence during her absence for a maximum of six years, that is, for the period 29 September 1996 to 29 September 2002.

    As Roya is only entitled to a partial CGT exemption, she first used the property to produce income after 20 August 1996, and she would have been entitled to a full CGT exemption for the dwelling immediately before she started renting it out, she treats the dwelling as having been acquired on 29 September 1996 at the market value at that time, which was $340,000.

    Roya works out her capital gain as follows:

    capital proceeds

    $555,000

    cost base: ($340,000 + $15,000)

    $355,000

    total capital gain

    $200,000

     

     

    $200,000

    x

    3654 days
    6,590 days

    =

    $110,895

     

    Roya chooses to use the discount method and, because she has no other capital gains or capital losses, she includes a net capital gain of $55,447 ($110,895 × 50%) on her 2013 tax return.
    End of example

    Moving from one main residence to another

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you acquire a new home before you dispose of your old one, both dwellings are treated as your main residence for up to six months if:

    • the old dwelling was your main residence for a continuous period of at least three months in the 12 months before you disposed of it
    • you did not use the old dwelling to produce assessable income in any part of that 12 months when it was not your main residence, and
    • the new dwelling becomes your main residence.

    If you dispose of the old dwelling within six months of acquiring the new one, both dwellings are exempt for the whole period between when you acquire the new one and dispose of the old one.

    Example 72: Exemption for both homes

    Jill and Norman bought their new home under a contract that was settled on 1 January 2013 and they moved in immediately. They sold their old home under a contract that was settled on 15 April 2013. Both the old and new homes are treated as their main residence for the period 1 January to 15 April, even though they did not live in the old home during that period.

    End of example

    If it takes longer than six months to dispose of your old home, both homes are exempt only for the last six months before you dispose of the old one. You get only a partial exemption when a CGT event happens to your old home.

    Example 73: Partial exemption for old home

    Jeneen and John bought their home under a contract that was settled on 1 January 1999 and they moved in immediately. It was their main residence until they bought another home under a contract that was entered into on 2 November 2011 and settled on 1 January 2012.

    They retained their old home after moving into the new one on 1 January 2012, but did not use the old one to produce income. They sold the old home under a contract that was settled on 1 October 2012. They owned this home for a total period of 5,023 days.

    Both homes are treated as their main residence for the period 1 April 2012 to 1 October 2012, the last six months that Jeneen and John owned their old home. Therefore, their old home is treated as their main residence only for the period before settlement of their new home and during the last six months before settlement of the sale of the old home.

    The 91 days from 1 January 2012 to 31 March 2012, when the old home was not their main residence, are taken into account in calculating the proportion of their capital gain that is taxable (91 ÷ 5,023).

    Because they entered into the contract to acquire their old home before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and entered into the contract to sell it after they had held it for at least 12 months, Jeneen and John can use either the indexation or the discount method to calculate their capital gain.

    End of example

    If it takes longer than six months to dispose of your old home, you may get an exemption for the old home for the period in excess of the six months by choosing to treat it as your main residence for that period under the ‘continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence’ rule. If you do this, you get only a partial exemption when you dispose of your new home.

    Example 74: Partial exemption for new home

    The facts are the same as in the previous example, except that Jeneen and John choose to continue to treat their old home as their main residence for the period from 1 January 2012 to 31 March 2012 under the continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence rule.

    This means they get a full exemption when they sell it.

    Because both homes can only be exempt for a maximum of six months when you are moving from one to the other, Jeneen and John will not get a full exemption for their new home when they sell it. The exemption would not be available for the new home for the 91 days from 1 January 2012 to 31 March 2012.

    End of example

    Continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    In some cases, you can choose to treat a dwelling as your main residence even though you no longer live in it. You cannot make this choice for a period before a dwelling first becomes your main residence. See Is the dwelling your main residence?

    Example 75: Not main residence until you move in

    Therese bought a house and rented it out immediately. Later, she stopped renting it out and moved in.

    Therese cannot choose to treat the house as her main residence during the period she was absent under the continuing main residence rule, because the house was not her main residence before she rented it out. She will only be entitled to a partial exemption if she sells the dwelling.

    End of example

    This choice needs to be made only for the income year that the CGT event happens to the dwelling, for example, the year that you enter into a contract to sell it. If you own both:

    • the dwelling that you can choose to treat as your main residence after you no longer live in it, and
    • the dwelling you actually lived in during that period

    you make the choice for the income year you enter into the contract to sell the first of those dwellings.

    If you make this choice, you cannot treat any other dwelling as your main residence for that period (except for a limited time if you are changing main residences, see Moving from one main residence to another).

    If you do not use it to produce income (for example, you leave it vacant or use it as a holiday home) you can treat the dwelling as your main residence for an unlimited period after you stop living in it.

    If you do use it to produce income (for example, you rent it out or it is available for rent) you can choose to treat it as your main residence for up to six years after you stop living in it. If you make this choice and as a result of it the dwelling is fully exempt, the home first used to produce income rule does not apply.

    Example 76: One period of absence of 10 years

    Lisa bought a house after 20 September 1985, but stopped using it as her main residence for the 10 years immediately before she sold it. During this period, she rented it out for six years and left it vacant for four years.

    Lisa chooses to treat the dwelling as her main residence for the period after she stopped living in it, so she disregards any capital gain or capital loss she makes on the sale of the dwelling. The maximum period the dwelling can continue to be her main residence while she used it to produce income is six years. However, while the house is vacant, the period she can treat the dwelling as her main residence is unlimited. This means the exemption applies for the whole 10 years that she was absent from the dwelling.

    As the dwelling is fully exempt because Lisa made the choice to treat the dwelling as her main residence, the home first used to produce income rule does not apply.

    The maximum period that Lisa can treat the dwelling as her main residence whilst it was being used to produce income is a total of six years even if the period the dwelling was income producing was broken by a period of vacancy. For example, if Lisa rented the dwelling for four years, left it vacant for three years and rented for three years, she could only treat the dwelling as her main residence for nine of the 10 years that she was not living there.

    End of example

    You can choose when you want to stop the period covered by this choice.

    For information about when and how you make a choice, see Choices.

    Example 77: Choosing to stop the period covered by the choice early

    James bought his home in Brisbane on 1 July 2002 and moved in immediately. On 31 July 2003, he moved to Perth and rented out his Brisbane home. James bought a new residence in Perth on 31 January 2012. He sold the property in Brisbane on 31 July 2012. In completing his 2013 tax return, James decided to continue to treat the Brisbane property as his main residence after he moved out of it, but only until 31 January 2012, when he purchased his new main residence in Perth.

    End of example

    If you rent out the dwelling for more than six years, the ‘home first used to produce income’ rule may apply, which means you are taken to have acquired the dwelling at its market value at the time you first used it to produce income. See Home first used to produce income.

    If you are absent more than once during the period you own the home, the six-year maximum period that you can treat it as your main residence while you use it to produce income applies separately to each period of absence.

    Example 78: Two periods of absence of eight years

    Lana bought a house after 20 September 1985. For the last 20 years prior to selling the house she stopped using it as her main residence for two periods of eight years. During each period, she rented it out for six years and left it vacant for two years. Between the first and second period of absence she lived in the dwelling for two years. She sold it two years after last returning to live in the house.

    Lana chooses to treat the dwelling as her main residence for the periods after she stopped living in it. She disregards any capital gain or capital loss she makes on selling it as the period of income production during each absence is not more than six years. Lana is entitled to another maximum period of six years as she returned to live in the dwelling between the periods of absence. (See example 79 below for more detail where the period of income production exceeds six years.)

    End of example

    Example 79: Home ceases to be the main residence and is used to produce income for more than six years during a single period of absence

    1 July 1993

    Ian settled a contract to buy a home in Sydney on 0.9 hectares of land and used it as his main residence.

    1 January 1995

    Ian was posted to Brisbane and settled a contract to buy another home there.

    1 January 1995 to 31 December 1999

    Ian rented out his Sydney home during the period he was posted to Brisbane.

    31 December 1999

    Ian settled a contract to sell his Brisbane home and the tenant in his Sydney home left. Ian chose not to claim the main resident exemption on the sale of this property.

    The period of five years from 1995 to 1999 is the first period the Sydney home was used to produce income for the purpose of the six-year test.

    1 January 2000

    Ian was posted from Brisbane to Melbourne for three years and settled a contract to buy a home in Melbourne. He did not return to his Sydney home at this time.

    1 March 2000

    Ian again rented out his Sydney home, this time for two years.

    28 February 2002

    The tenant of his Sydney home left.

    The period of two years from 2000 to 2002 is the second period the Sydney home was used to produce income under the six-year test.

    31 December 2002

    Ian sold his home in Melbourne. Ian chose not to claim the main resident exemption on the sale of this property.

    31 December 2003

    Ian returned to his home in Sydney and it again became his main residence.

    28 February 2013

    Ian settled a contract to sell his Sydney home.

    As Ian did not claim the main resident exemption for either of his Brisbane or Melbourne homes he is able to choose to treat the Sydney home as his main residence for the period after he stopped living in it. The effect of making this choice is that any capital gains Ian made on the sale of both his Brisbane home in 1999–00 and his Melbourne home in 2002–03 are not exempt.

    Ian cannot get the main residence exemption for the whole period of ownership of the Sydney home because the combined periods he used it to produce income (1 January 1995 to 31 December 1999 and 1 March 2000 to 28 February 2002) during his one absence were more than six years.

    As a result, the Sydney house is not exempt for the period it was used to produce income that exceeds the six-year period, that is, one year.

    If the capital gain on the disposal of the Sydney home is $250,000, he calculates the amount of the gain that is taxable as follows:

    Period of ownership of the Sydney home:

    1 July 1993 to 28 February 2013

    7183 days

     

    Periods the Sydney home was used to produce income after Ian stopped living in it:

    1 January 1995 to 31 December 1999

    1,826 days

    1 March 2000 to 28 February 2002

    730 days

     

    2,556 days

     

    First six years the Sydney home was used to produce income:

    1 January 1995 to 31 December 1999

    1,826 days

    1 March 2000 to 28 February 2001

    365 days

     

    2,191 days

    Income producing for more than six years after Ian stopped living in it: (2,556 – 2,191)

    365 days

     

    Proportion of capital gain taxable in 2012–13

    $250,000

    x

    365
    7,183

    =

    $12,703

     

    Because Ian entered into the contract to acquire the house before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and entered into the contract to sell it after that time, and owned it for at least 12 months, he can use either the indexation or the discount method to calculate his capital gain.

    End of example
    Attention

    21 August 1996 important

    The home first used to produce income rule does not apply because the home was first used by Ian to produce income before 21 August 1996.

    End of attention

    Home used to produce income and then you stop living in it

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you use any part of your home to produce income before you stop living in it, you cannot apply the continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence rule to that part. This means you cannot get the main residence exemption for that part of the dwelling either before or after you stop living in it.

    Example 80: Ceasing to live in a home after part of it is used to produce income

    Caroline purchased a home under a contract that was settled on 1 July 1996, and she moved in immediately. She used 75% of the home as her main residence and the remaining 25% as a doctor’s surgery, which she used until 30 June 2007.

    On 1 July 2007, she moved out and rented out the home until it was sold under a contract that was settled on 30 June 2013. Caroline chose to treat the dwelling as her main residence for the six years she rented it out. She made a capital gain of $100,000 when she sold the home.

    As 25% of the home was not used as her main residence during the period before Caroline stopped living in it, part of the capital gain is taxable, calculated as follows:

    $100,000 × 25% = $25,000

    Because Caroline entered into the contract to acquire the house before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and sold it after she had owned it for at least 12 months, she can use either the indexation or the discount method to calculate her capital gain.

    The home first used to produce income rule does not apply because she used it to produce income from the time she purchased it.

    End of example

    Constructing, renovating or repairing a dwelling on land you already own

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Generally, if you build a dwelling on land you already own, the land does not qualify for exemption until the dwelling becomes your main residence. However, you can choose to treat land as your main residence for up to four years before the dwelling becomes your main residence in certain circumstances.

    You can choose to have this exemption apply if you acquire an ownership interest (other than a life interest) in land and you:

    • build a dwelling on the land
    • repair or renovate an existing dwelling on the land, or
    • finish a partly constructed dwelling on the land.

    There are conditions that you must satisfy before you can claim the exemption. You must first finish building, repairing or renovating the dwelling and then:

    • Move into the dwelling as soon as practicable after it is finished, and
    • Continue to use the dwelling as your main residence for at least three months after it becomes your main residence. A period in which you choose to treat a dwelling as your main residence under the continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence rule is taken into account in working out the three month period.

    The land, including the dwelling that is being built, renovated, repaired or finished on it, is exempt for the shorter of the following periods:

    • the four-year period immediately before the date the dwelling becomes your main residence
    • the period between the date you acquired the land and the date the dwelling becomes your main residence.

    However, if after you acquired the land you or someone else occupied a dwelling that was already on the land, the period of exemption starts from the date that dwelling was vacated.

    If a newly constructed dwelling is built to replace a previous dwelling that was demolished or destroyed, you can get a full exemption when you dispose of the property if:

    • the original dwelling was your main residence for the full period you owned it, you did not use it to produce assessable income, and it was on land covering an area of two hectares or less
    • the new dwelling becomes your main residence as soon as practicable after it is completed, it continues to be your main residence until you dispose of it, and that period is at least three months
    • you make a choice to treat the vacant land and new dwelling as your main residence in the period starting when you stopped occupying the previous dwelling and ending when the new dwelling becomes your main residence, and this period is four years or less, and
    • you dispose of the land and new dwelling together.

    If you make this choice, you cannot treat any other dwelling as your main residence for the period, except for a limited time under the moving from one main residence to another rule.

    Therefore, if you have a dwelling you acquired on or after 20 September 1985 and you live in it while you build your new home, you must decide whether to:

    • maintain the exemption for your old home, or
    • have the exemption apply to the land (including the dwelling that is being built, renovated, repaired or finished on it) for the shorter of
      • the time from when you acquire the land until the new home becomes your main residence, or
      • the four-year period immediately before the date on which the new home becomes your main residence.
       

    If you acquired your old main residence before 20 September 1985, it is fully exempt. (The exception is if you made major capital improvements after that date and did not use them exclusively as your main residence; see Major capital improvements to a dwelling acquired before 20 September 1985). This means you will benefit from choosing to treat the land on which your new dwelling is to be built, renovated, repaired or finished as your main residence for the relevant dates above.

    You cannot choose to have a shorter period of exemption for the new home in order to exempt the old home for part of the construction period.

    For information about when and how you make a choice, see Choices.

    Example 81: Choosing to claim exemption for the land from the date of construction

    Grant bought vacant land on which he intended to build a new home under a contract that was settled on 3 September 2004. He bought his previous home under a contract that was settled on 3 November 1991.

    Grant finished building his new home on 3 September 2012. He moved into it on 7 October 2012, which was as soon as practicable after completion. He sold his previous home under a contract that was settled on 1 October 2012.

    Grant can treat the new home as his main residence from 7 October 2007. In these circumstances, the main resident exemption applies for the period of four years immediately before the date the new home actually becomes his main residence. He can also claim the exemption for his previous home from 3 November 1991 to 6 October 2007.

    Both homes are also exempt from 1 April 2012 to 1 October 2012, the date Grant disposed of the old home. This is because the maximum six-month exemption also applies, see Moving from one main residence to another.

    End of example

    If you were to die at any time between entering into contracts for the construction work and the end of the first three months of residence in the new home, this exemption can still apply.

    If you owned the land as a joint tenant and you die, the surviving joint tenant (or if none, the trustee of your estate) can choose to treat the land and the dwelling as your main residence for the shorter of:

    • four years before your death, or
    • the period starting when you acquired the land and ending when you die.

    If there was already a dwelling on the land when you acquired it and someone else occupied it after that time, the surviving joint tenant (or if none, the trustee of your estate) can choose to treat the land and the dwelling as your main residence for the shorter of:

    • four years before your death, or
    • the period starting when the dwelling stopped being occupied so that it could be repaired or renovated and ending when you die.

    Destruction of dwelling and sale of land

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If your home is accidentally destroyed and you then dispose of the vacant land on which it was built, you can choose to apply the main residence exemption as if the home had not been destroyed and continued to be your main residence.

    You can get a full exemption for the land if you used it solely for private purposes in association with your home and it does not exceed two hectares. You cannot claim the main residence exemption for this period for any other dwelling, except for a limited time if you are changing main residences (see Moving from one main residence to another).

    Having a different home from your spouse or dependent child

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you and a dependent child under 18 years old have different homes for a period, you must choose one of the homes as the main residence for both of you for the period.

    If you and your spouse have different homes for a period, you and your spouse must either:

    • choose one of the homes as the main residence for both of you for the period, or
    • nominate the different homes as your main residences for the period.

    If you and your spouse nominate different homes for the period, and you own 50% or less of the home you have nominated, you qualify for an exemption for your share. If you own more than 50%, your share is exempt for half the period you and your spouse had different homes.

    The same applies to your spouse. If your spouse owns 50% or less of the home they have nominated, they qualify for an exemption for their share. However, if your spouse owns more than 50% of the home, their share is exempt for only half the period you had different homes.

    This rule applies to each home the spouses own, whether they have sole ownership or own the home jointly (either as joint tenants or tenants in common).

    Your 'spouse' includes another person (whether of the same sex or opposite sex) who:

    • you were in a relationship with that was registered under a prescribed state or territory law
    • although not legally married to you, lived with you on a genuine domestic basis in a relationship as a couple.

    This rule applies also if you choose to treat a dwelling as your main residence when you no longer live in it (see Continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence), and this choice results in your having a different main residence from your spouse or a dependent child for a period.

    For information about when and how you make a choice, see Choices.

    Example 82: Spouses with different main residences

    Under a contract that was settled on 1 July 1998, Kathy and her spouse Grahame purchased a townhouse, in which they lived together. Grahame owns 70% of the townhouse while Kathy owns the other 30%.

    Under a contract that was settled on 1 August 2000, they purchased a beach house, which they own in equal shares. From 1 May 2001, Kathy lives in their beach house while Grahame keeps living in the townhouse. Grahame nominated the townhouse as his main residence and Kathy nominated the beach house as her main residence.

    Kathy and Grahame sold the beach house under a contract that was settled on 15 April 2013. As it was Kathy’s main residence and she owned 50% of it, she disregards her share of any capital gain or capital loss for the period she and Grahame had different homes (1 May 2001 to 15 April 2013).

    As Grahame did not live in the beach house or nominate it as his main residence when he and Kathy had different homes, he does not ignore his share of any capital gain or capital loss for any of the period he owned it.

    Grahame and Kathy also sold the townhouse, under a contract that was settled on 15 April 2013.

    Because Grahame owns more than 50% of the townhouse, it is taken to have been his main residence for half of the period when he and Kathy had different homes.

    If the total capital gain on the sale of the townhouse is $100,000, Grahame’s share of the capital gain is $70,000 (reflecting his 70% ownership interest). The amount of the gain that Grahame disregards under the main residence exemption is worked out as follows:

    $70,000

    x

    1,036 days* 
    5,403days**

    =

    $13,422

     

    plus

    $70,000

    x

    50%

    x

    4,367 days***
    5,403 days**

    =

    $28,289

     

    * townhouse was Grahame’s home and he and Kathy did not have different homes
    ** total ownership period
    *** when Grahame and Kathy had the different homes

    The total amount disregarded by Grahame is:

    $13,422 + $28,289 = $41,711

    As Grahame bought the townhouse before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and entered into the contract to sell it after owning his share for at least 12 months, he can use either the indexation or the discount method to calculate his capital gain.

    Kathy’s share of the $100,000 capital gain on the townhouse is $30,000, reflecting her 30% ownership interest. The amount she disregards is:

    $30,000

    x

    1,036 days* 
    5,403 days**

    =

    $5,752

     

    * period before 1 May 2001 when the townhouse was Kathy’s home
    ** total ownership period

    As Kathy entered into the contract to buy the townhouse before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and entered into the contract to sell it after owning her share for at least 12 months, she can use either the discount method to calculate her capital gain or the indexation method.

    End of example

    Example 83: Different main residences

    Anna and her spouse, Mark, jointly purchased a townhouse under a contract that was settled on 5 February 1999. They both lived in it from that date until 29 April 2013, when the contract of sale was settled. Anna owned more than 50% of the townhouse.

    Before 5 February 1999, Anna had lived alone in her own flat, which she rented out after moving to the townhouse. She then sold her flat and settled the sale on 11 March 2000. Anna chose to treat the flat as her main residence from 5 February 1999 until she sold it under the continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence rule.

    Because of Anna’s choice, Mark had a different main residence from Anna for the period 5 February 1999 to 11 March 2000. Therefore, Mark must either:

    • treat Anna’s flat as his main residence for that period, or
    • nominate the townhouse as his main residence for that period.

    If he chooses to treat Anna’s flat as his main residence, a part of any gain Mark makes when he sells the townhouse will be taxable. He will not get an exemption for the townhouse for the period that he nominated Anna’s flat as his main residence (that is, 5 February 1999 to 11 March 2000).

    If Mark nominates the townhouse as his main residence, he qualifies for a full exemption on any capital gain he makes when it is sold because he owned 50% or less of it. However, because Mark and Anna have different main residences as a result of Mark’s choice, and Anna owns more than 50% of the flat, her gain on the flat will only qualify for a 50% exemption for the period from 5 February 1999 to 11 March 2000.

    Any capital gain Anna makes on the townhouse is taxable, except for the period from 12 March 2000 to 29 April 2013 and the part that is ignored under the moving from one main residence to another rule.

    End of example

    Major capital improvements to a dwelling acquired before 20 September 1985

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you acquired a dwelling before 20 September 1985 and you make major capital improvements after that date, part of any capital gain you make when a CGT event happens to the dwelling could be taxable. Even though you acquired the dwelling before CGT started, major capital improvements are considered to be separate CGT assets from the original asset, and may therefore be subject to CGT in their own right if you make them on or after 20 September 1985.

    If the dwelling is your main residence and you use the improvements as part of your home, they are still exempt. This includes improvements on land adjacent to the dwelling (for example, installing a swimming pool) if the total land, including the land on which the home stands, is two hectares or less.

    However, if the dwelling is not your main residence or you used the improvements to produce income for any period, the part of any gain that is attributable to the improvements for that period is taxable.

    A capital improvement to an existing structure, such as a renovation to your house, is taken to be major if its original cost (indexed for inflation if the improvements were made under a contract entered into before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999) is:

    • more than 5% of the amount you receive when you dispose of the dwelling, and
    • greater than a certain threshold. The threshold increases every income year to take account of inflation. Improvement thresholds for 1985–86 to 2012–13 are shown in table 1.

    When you dispose of the dwelling, you calculate the capital gain or capital loss on the major improvements by taking away the cost base of the improvements from the proceeds of the sale that are reasonably attributable to the improvements:

    capital gain on major improvements

    =

    proceeds of sale attributable to improvements

    cost base of improvements

     

    You can choose to calculate the capital gain made on the improvements using either the indexation or the discount method if:

    • the improvements were made under a contract entered into before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999
    • the dwelling was sold after that time, and
    • you owned the improvements for at least 12 months.

    If you entered into the contract to make the improvements after 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and you owned them for more than 12 months, you can calculate your capital gain using the CGT discount of 50%.

    In calculating the amount of capital proceeds to be attributed to the improvements, you must take whatever steps are appropriate to work out their value. If you make an estimate of this amount, it must be reasonable and you must be able to show how you arrived at the estimated amount.

    Example 84: Improvement to a dwelling acquired before 20 September 1985

    Martin bought a home in 1984. On 1 December 1993, he undertook major renovations to his home, costing $120,000. He sold the home for $500,000 under a contract that was settled on 1 December 2012. At the date of sale, the indexed cost base of the improvements was $134,640.

    Of the $500,000 he received for the home, $200,000 could be attributed to the improvements. Martin used the improvements to produce income from the time they were finished until the time he sold them with the home.

    The home first used to produce income rule does not apply to the improvements because they were first used to produce income before 21 August 1996.

    The cost base of the improvements is more than 5% of the $500,000 capital proceeds (that is, $25,000) and more than the 2012–13 threshold of $134,200. Therefore, because the improvements were used to produce income, the capital gain on the improvements is taxable. (Because the improvements were made under a contract entered into before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 the indexed cost base can be used.)

    As Martin acquired the improvements before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and sold the home after he had held the improvements for at least 12 months, he could use either the indexation method or the discount method to calculate his capital gain on the improvements.

    Martin calculates his capital gain using the indexation method as follows:

    Amount of proceeds attributable to the improvements

    $200,000

    less cost base of improvements indexed for inflation

    $134,640

    Taxable capital gain

    $65,360

     

    Martin’s capital gain using the discount method (assuming he has no capital losses or other capital gains in the 2012–13 income year and does not have any unapplied net capital losses from earlier years) is:

    Amount of proceeds attributable to the improvements

    $200,000

    less cost base of improvements (without indexation)

    $120,000

    Capital gain

    $80,000

    less 50% discount

    $40,000

    Net capital gain

    $40,000

     

    Martin chooses the discount method because this gives him a lower capital gain.

    Note: If the improvements had been used as part of Martin’s main residence, this gain would be exempt. However, if the home (including the improvements) had been rented out for one-third of the period, one-third of the capital gain made on the improvements would have been taxable.

    If construction of the improvements started after 13 May 1997 and they were used to produce income, Martin would also reduce the cost base by the amount of any capital works deductions he claimed or can claim (see Cost base adjustments for capital works deductions). If Martin makes a capital loss, the reduced cost base of the improvements is reduced by the amount of any capital works deductions irrespective of when construction started.

    End of example
    Buildings or structures constructed on land acquired before 20 September 1985

    Buildings or structures constructed on or after 20 September 1985 on land acquired before that date are also considered to be separate CGT assets from the original land. The major capital improvement threshold and 5% of capital proceeds rules do not apply to them. Therefore, they may be subject to CGT if you use them other than as your main residence.

    Dwellings transferred after marriage or relationship breakdown

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Special rules apply to dwellings transferred to you from a spouse, or a company or trustee of a trust, if the marriage or relationship breakdown rollover applies.

    For more information, see Real estate that was a main residence.

    Inherited main residence

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you inherit a deceased person’s dwelling, you may be exempt or partially exempt when a CGT event happens to it. The same exemptions apply if a CGT event happens to a deceased’s estate of which you are the trustee. Flowchart 3.6 in appendix 3 sets out the full exemption rules if you inherit a dwelling. Alternatively, the rules are set out below.

    If you are a joint tenant and another joint tenant dies, their interest in the dwelling is taken to pass in equal shares to you and any other surviving joint tenants on that date.

    For the purpose of the main residence exemption, you are treated as if that interest in the dwelling has passed to you as beneficiary of the deceased estate, which means the following rules apply to that interest. (For more information about other rules affecting joint tenants, see Joint tenants.)

    Full exemption

    Deceased died before 20 September 1985

    As you acquired the dwelling before 20 September 1985, any capital gain you make is exempt. However, major capital improvements you make to the dwelling on or after 20 September 1985 may be taxable (see Major capital improvements to a dwelling acquired before 20 September 1985).

    Deceased died on or after 20 September 1985

    a)

    The deceased acquired the dwelling before 20 September 1985 (it does not matter whether the dwelling was the main residence of the deceased person).

     

    You may have an ownership interest in a dwelling that passed to you as a beneficiary in a deceased estate or you may have owned it as trustee of a deceased estate. In either case, you disregard any capital gain or capital loss you make from a CGT event that happens to the dwelling if either of the following applies:

    1

    You disposed of your ownership interest within two years of the person’s death, that is, if the dwelling was sold under a contract, settlement occurred within two years. This exemption applies whether or not you used the dwelling as your main residence or to produce income during the two year period. The Commissioner has the discretion to extend the two year period for CGT events (such as a sale) happening in the 2008–09 income year and later years. See Commissioner may extend the two year time period

     

    or

    2

    From the deceased’s death until you disposed of your ownership interest, the dwelling was not used to produce income and was the main residence of one or more of:

    • a person who was the spouse of the deceased immediately before the deceased’s death (but not a spouse who was permanently separated from the deceased)
    • an individual who had a right to occupy the home under the deceased’s will
    • you, as a beneficiary, if you disposed of the dwelling as a beneficiary.
     

     

    The dwelling can be the main residence of one of the above people (even though they may have stopped living in it) if they choose to treat it as their main residence under the continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence rule).

    The requirement that the dwelling is the main residence of an individual who had a right to occupy it under the deceased’s will is satisfied if the individual moves into the dwelling when it is first practicable to do so. This requirement will be satisfied where the delay in moving is because the dwelling cannot be occupied until probate and administration of the estate is granted.

    b)

    The deceased acquired the dwelling on or after 20 September 1985.

     

    You disregard any capital gain or capital loss you make when a CGT event happens to the dwelling or your ownership interest in the dwelling if:

    • condition 2 in (a) above is met and the dwelling passed to you as beneficiary or trustee on or before 20 August 1996. For this to apply, the deceased must have used the dwelling as their main residence from the date they acquired it until their death, and they must not have used it to produce income
      or
    • one of the conditions in (a) above is met and the dwelling passed to you as beneficiary or trustee after 20 August 1996, and just before the date the deceased died, it was their main residence and was not being used to produce income.

    A dwelling can still be regarded as the deceased’s main residence even though they stopped living in it, see Continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence.

    Example 85: Full exemption

    Rodrigo was the sole occupant of a home he bought in April 1990. He did not live in or own another home.

    He died in January 2012 and left the house to his son, Petro. Petro rented out the house and then disposed of it 15 months after his father died.

    Petro is entitled to a full exemption from CGT, as he acquired the house after 20 August 1996 and disposed of it within two years of his father’s death.

    If Petro did not sell the house within two years of his father's death, he may ask the Commissioner to grant an extension of time, see Commissioner may extend the two year time period.

    End of example
    Partial exemption

    If you do not qualify for a full exemption from CGT for the home, you may be entitled to a partial exemption.

    You calculate your capital gain or capital loss as follows:

    capital gain or capital loss amount

    x

    non-main residence days
    total days

     

    Non-main residence days

    ‘Non-main residence days’ is the number of days that the dwelling was not the main residence.

    a)

    If the deceased acquired the dwelling before 20 September 1985, non-main residence days is the number of days in the period from their death until settlement of your contract for sale of the dwelling when it was not the main residence of one of the following:

    • a person who was the spouse of the deceased (except a spouse who was permanently separated from the deceased)
    • an individual who had a right to occupy the dwelling under the deceased’s will, or
    • you, as a beneficiary, if you disposed of the dwelling as a beneficiary.
     

    b)

    If the deceased acquired the dwelling on or after 20 September 1985, non-main residence days is the number of days calculated under (a) plus the number of days in the deceased’s period of ownership when the dwelling was not their main residence.

     

    Total days

    a)

    If the deceased acquired their ownership interest before 20 September 1985, ‘total days’ is the number of days from their death until you disposed of your ownership interest.

    b)

    If the deceased acquired the ownership interest on or after 20 September 1985, total days is the number of days in the period from when the deceased acquired the dwelling until you disposed of your ownership interest.

     

    Attention

    A further adjustment may be required if the dwelling was a main residence, but was partly used to produce income, for example, if, for a period, part of it was rented out or used as a place of business.

    End of attention

    Example 86: Partial exemption

    Vicki bought a house under a contract that was settled on 12 February 1995 and she used it solely as a rental property. When she died on 17 November 1998, the house became the main residence of her beneficiary, Lesley. Lesley sold the property under a contract that was settled on 27 November 2012.

    As Vicki had never used the property as her main residence, Lesley cannot claim a full exemption from CGT. However, as Lesley used the house as her main residence, she is entitled to a partial exemption from CGT.

    Vicki owned the house for 1,375 days and Lesley then lived in the house for 5,125 days, a total of 6,500 days. Assuming Lesley made a capital gain of $100,000, the taxable portion is:

    $100,000

    x

    1,375
    6,500

    =

    $21,154

     

    In working out her capital gain, Lesley can use either the discount method or the indexation method. This is because, for the purposes of using those methods, she is taken to have acquired the property on 12 February 1995 (when Vicki acquired it) and this is before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999, and more than 12 months before Lesley entered into the contract to sell it.

    End of example

    If you dispose of your ownership interest in a dwelling within two years of the person’s death, you can ignore the main residence days and total days in the period from the person’s death until you dispose of the dwelling if this lessens your tax liability. See Commissioner may extend the two year time period

    You also ignore any non-main residence days before the deceased’s death in calculating the capital gain or capital loss if:

    • you acquired the dwelling after 20 August 1996
    • the dwelling was the deceased’s main residence just before their death, and
    • the dwelling was not being used to produce income at the time of their death.
    Using a home you inherited to produce income

    If a person acquired their main residence on or after 20 September 1985, and they died and it passed to you as a beneficiary (or as trustee of their estate) after 20 August 1996, you are taken to have acquired the dwelling at its market value at the time you first used it to produce your income if:

    • you first used the dwelling to produce income after 20 August 1996
    • when a CGT event happens to the dwelling, you would get only a partial exemption because you used the dwelling to produce assessable income during the period you owned it
    • you would have been entitled to a full exemption if the CGT event happened to the dwelling immediately before you first used it to produce income, and
    • the CGT event did not happen to the dwelling within two years of the person’s date of death.

    If all of the above apply, you must work out your capital gain or capital loss using the market value of the dwelling at the time you first used it to produce income. You do not have a choice.

    Cost to you of acquiring the dwelling

    If you acquire a dwelling the deceased had owned, there are special rules for calculating your cost base.

    These rules apply in calculating any capital gain or capital loss when a CGT event happens to the dwelling.

    The first element of the cost base and reduced cost base of a dwelling (its acquisition cost) is its market value at the date of death if either:

    • the dwelling was acquired by the deceased before 20 September 1985, or
    • the dwelling passes to you after 20 August 1996 (but not as a joint tenant), and it was the main residence of the deceased immediately before their death and was not being used to produce income at that date.

    In any other case, your acquisition cost is the deceased’s cost base and reduced cost base on the day they died. You may need to contact the trustee or the deceased’s recognised tax adviser to obtain the details. If that cost base includes indexation, you must recalculate it to exclude the indexation component if you prefer to use the discount method to work out your capital gain from the property.

    If you are a beneficiary, the cost base and the reduced cost base also include amounts that the trustee of the deceased’s estate would have been able to include in the cost base and reduced cost base.

    Continuing main residence status

    If the deceased was not living in the home at the date of their death, they or their trustee may have chosen to continue to treat it as their main residence. You may need to contact the trustee or the deceased’s recognised tax adviser to find out whether this choice was made. If it was, the dwelling can still be regarded as the deceased’s main residence:

    • for an indefinite period, if the dwelling was not used to produce income after the deceased stopped living in it, or
    • for a maximum of six years after they stopped living in it, if it was used to produce income after they stopped living in it.

    Example 87: Continuing main residence status

    Aldo bought a house in March 1995 and lived in it.

    He moved into a nursing home in December 2007 and left the house vacant. He chose to treat the house as his main residence after he stopped living in it under the Continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence rule.

    Aldo died in February 2013 and the house passed to his beneficiary, Con, who uses the house as a rental property.

    As the house was Aldo’s main residence immediately before his death and was not being used to produce income at that time, Con can get a full exemption for the period Aldo owned it.

    If Con rented out the house and sold it more than two years after Aldo’s death, the capital gain for the period from the date of Aldo’s death until Con sold it is taxable, unless the Commissioner grants Con an extension of time (see Commissioner may extend the two year time period).

    If Con had sold the house within two years of Aldo’s death, he could have ignored the main residence days and total days between Aldo’s death and him selling it, which would have given him exemption for this period.

    If Aldo had rented out the house after he stopped living in it, he could also have chosen to continue to treat it as his main residence (see Continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence). The house would be considered to be his main residence until his death because he rented it out for less than six years.

    If this choice had been made, Con would get an exemption for the period Aldo owned the house.

    End of example
    Commissioner may extend the two year time period

    A trustee or beneficiary of a deceased estate may apply to the Commissioner to grant an extension of the two year time period, where the CGT event happens in the 2008-09 income year or later income years. Generally, the Commissioner would exercise the discretion in situations where the delay is due to circumstances which are outside of the control of the beneficiary or trustee, for example:

    • the ownership of a dwelling or a will is challenged
    • the complexity of a deceased estate delays the completion of administration of the estate
    • a trustee or beneficiary is unable to attend to the deceased estate due to unforeseen or serious personal circumstances arising during the two year period (for example, the taxpayer or a family member has a severe illness or injury), or
    • settlement of a contract of sale over the dwelling is unexpectedly delayed or falls through for circumstances outside the beneficiary or trustee’s control.

    These examples are not exhaustive.

    In exercising the discretion the Commissioner will also take into account whether and to what extent the dwelling is used to produce assessable income and for how long the trustee or beneficiary held the ownership interest in the dwelling.

    Inheriting a dwelling from someone who inherited it themselves

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The formula for calculating the partial main residence exemption is adjusted if the deceased individual also acquired the interest in the dwelling on or after 20 September 1985 as a beneficiary (or trustee) of a deceased estate. The main residence exemption is calculated having regard to the number of days the dwelling was the main residence of yourself and the previous beneficiaries.

    Example 88: Partial exemption for beneficiaries

    Ahmed acquired a dwelling after 20 September 1985.

    The dwelling was his main residence from the date of settlement of the contract for purchase until he died. The number of days Ahmed owned the dwelling was 3,700.

    Under his will, Ahmed left the dwelling to his son, Fayez. Fayez was the sole beneficiary of Ahmed’s estate. No other individual had a right to occupy the dwelling under Ahmed’s will.

    Some years later, Fayez died. He had owned the dwelling for 2,600 days and it wasn’t his main residence at any time during this period.

    The dwelling was left to Mardianah under Fayez’s will.

    Mardianah sold the dwelling in 2012–13 and made a capital gain of $100,000. She owned the dwelling for 750 days and it wasn’t her main residence at any time during that period.

    The taxable proportion of Mardianah’s $100,000 capital gain is $47,518. This is worked out as follows:

    $100,000

    x

     2,600 + 750
    2,600 + 750 + 3,700

    =

    $47,518

     

    Because the combined period that Ahmed, Fayez and Mardianah owned the dwelling was more than 12 months, Mardianah can reduce her $47,518 capital gain by the 50% discount (after deducting any capital losses).

    Because Mardianah gets an exemption for the period the dwelling was Ahmed’s main residence, her capital gain is less than it otherwise would have been.

    End of example

    For more information about deceased estates, see Deceased estates.

    Death during construction

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If an individual entered into a contract to construct, repair or renovate a home on land they already owned, and they die before certain conditions are met, the trustee may choose to have the home and land treated as the deceased’s main residence for up to four years before the home became (or was to become) their main residence.

    The trustee can make this choice if the deceased dies before:

    • the home is finished
    • it was practicable for the home to be their main residence, or
    • they had lived in the home for three months.

    If the trustee makes this choice, no other dwelling can be treated as the deceased’s main residence during that time.

    Loss, destruction or compulsory acquisition of an asset

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    This section explains your CGT obligations if your CGT asset is lost, destroyed or compulsorily acquired.

    Generally, there are no CGT obligations for assets acquired before 20 September 1985 (pre-CGT).

    Attention

    New terms

    We may use some terms that are new to you. These words are explained in Definitions. Generally, they are also explained in detail in the section where they first appear.

    End of attention

    There may be a situation where you receive money or another CGT asset (or both) as compensation when you dispose of an asset involuntarily (or under an insurance policy against the risk of such an event happening). In this case, you may be able to choose to:

    • defer your liability to pay tax on any capital gain arising on the disposal, or
    • get a CGT exemption for any replacement asset if you acquired the original asset before 20 September 1985.

    This concession is known as a rollover. It may be available if one of the following events happens:

    • all or part of your CGT asset is lost or destroyed
    • your CGT asset is compulsorily acquired by an Australian government agency
    • your CGT asset is compulsorily acquired by an entity (other than by an Australian government agency or a foreign government agency) under a power of compulsory acquisition conferred by an Australian or foreign law. However, the compulsory acquisition of minority interests (such as shares in a company) under the Corporations Act or similar foreign law are excluded
    • you dispose of your CGT asset to an entity (other than a foreign government agency) after a notice is served on you inviting you to negotiate a sale agreement. You must have been informed that, if the negotiations are unsuccessful, the asset will be compulsorily acquired under a power of compulsory acquisition conferred by an Australian or foreign law. However, the compulsory acquisition of minority interests (such as shares in a company) under the Corporations Act or similar foreign law are excluded
    • you dispose of land to an entity (other than a foreign government agency) where a mining lease was compulsorily granted over the land, the lease significantly affected your use of the land, the lease was in force immediately before the disposal and the entity to which you disposed of the land was the lessee
    • you dispose of land to an entity (other than a foreign government agency) where a mining lease would have been compulsorily granted over the land, the lease would have significantly affected your use of the land and the entity to which you disposed of the land would have been the lessee
    • a lease that had been granted to you by an Australian Government agency under a Commonwealth, state or territory law expires and is not renewed.

    This rollover is not available for plant disposed of after 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and other depreciating assets from 1 July 2001. Instead, if a depreciating asset is lost or destroyed or, acquired compulsorily or by forced negotiation (other than by a foreign government agency), the capital allowances provisions may allow for a balancing adjustment offset.

    This means that rather than including an amount in your assessable income by way of a balancing adjustment, you can offset that amount against the cost of a replacement asset (or assets).

    If you choose to take rollover, you do not need to lodge a written election stating your choice, it will be clear from the way you prepare your tax return.

    You cannot choose to defer a capital loss but you can use it to reduce any capital gain made in the current income year or a later income year.

    For rollover relief to apply, the replacement asset you receive cannot be a car, motorcycle or similar vehicle.

    Further, from 1 July 2001, for rollover relief to apply, the replacement asset you receive cannot become an item of your trading stock, nor can it be a depreciating asset.

    Compulsory acquisition of part of your main residence

    For certain compulsory acquisitions, an optional rollover may apply to a particular arrangement to which the exemption for part of a main residence also applies. The rollover may apply to that arrangement to the extent that the compulsory acquisition exemption does not apply.

    A compulsory acquisition of part of your main residence may not qualify for the rollover as the requirement that you acquire a replacement asset that is used for the same (or a similar) purpose may not be able to be met. For example if vacant land adjacent to your home is compulsorily acquired you may not be able to acquire replacement adjacent land.

    In this case, the main residence exemption may apply to the compulsory acquisition (or similar arrangement) of part of your main residence such as vacant land or structures.

    For more information see Main residence – compulsory acquisition.

    Time of the CGT event

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    You need to know the time of a CGT event to work out in which income year a capital gain or capital loss affects your income tax.

    If an asset is lost or destroyed and you receive compensation, the time of the CGT event is when you first receive the compensation.

    If you do not receive any compensation, the time of the CGT event is when the loss is discovered or the destruction occurred.

    If your asset was compulsorily acquired by an entity under an Australian law or foreign law, the time of the CGT event is the earlier of when:

    • you first received compensation from the entity
    • the entity enters the asset (for example, land) or takes possession of it.

    If an entity acquires your asset following negotiation (rather than compulsorily acquiring it), the time of the CGT event is:

    • the date the contract to acquire it is made, or
    • the date of the change of ownership if there is no contract.

    If a lease that had been granted to you by an Australian government agency expires and is not renewed, the time of the CGT event is when the lease expires.

    If you receive money

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you receive money because a CGT event happens, you can choose a rollover only if:

    • you incur expenditure in acquiring another CGT asset that is used
    • in your business or is installed ready for use in the business for a reasonable period if the original asset was a business asset, or
    • otherwise, for a reasonable period for the same or a similar purpose as the original asset, or
    • part of the original asset is lost or destroyed and you incur expenditure of a capital nature in repairing or restoring it.

    You must incur at least some of the expenditure:

    • no earlier than one year before the event happens, or
    • within one year after the end of the income year in which the event happens.

    This period may be extended in special circumstances.

    Example 89: Rollover applies

    Trish paid for the repair of an asset for which she was compensated after part of it was destroyed on 1 September 2011. Trish’s expenditure qualifies for the rollover concession if it was incurred any time during the period 1 September 2010 to 30 June 2013.

    The replacement asset need not be identical to the one it is replacing. However, for a rollover to apply, you must use it in the same business (or for the same or a similar purpose) as the one for which you used the original asset. Also, your replacement asset cannot become an item of trading stock, nor can it be a depreciating asset.

    End of example

    Example 90: Rollover does not apply

    Denise receives money when her manufacturing business premises are destroyed. She buys a rental property with this money.

    Denise cannot access the rollover concession because she does not use the rental property for the same or similar purpose as her old business premises.

    End of example

    Consequences of receiving money

    If you receive money and choose to take a rollover, the consequences depend on whether you acquired the original asset:

    • before 20 September 1985
    • on or after 20 September 1985, and
    • the money received for the asset is more than the cost of repair or replacement
    • the money received does not exceed the cost of repair or replacement.

    Original asset acquired before 20 September 1985

    If you acquired the original asset before 20 September 1985, you are taken to have acquired the repaired or replacement asset before that day if:

    • you repair or restore the original asset, or
    • you replace the original asset
    • at a cost of no more than 120% of its market value at the time of the event, or
    • at any cost, provided it (or part of it) was lost or destroyed by a natural disaster and the replacement asset is substantially the same.

    This means you disregard any capital gain or capital loss you make when a later CGT event happens to the repaired or replacement asset.

    Original asset acquired on or after 20 September 1985

    If you acquired the original asset on or after 20 September 1985, the way rollover applies will depend on whether the money you received is more or less than the cost of repairing or replacing the asset. If it is more, it also depends on whether the capital gain you make when the event happens is:

    • more than that excess, or
    • less than or equal to that excess.

    Money received is more than the cost of repair or replacement

    If you do not use all of the money you received to repair or replace the original asset, this affects your CGT obligations. The amount of capital gain you include on your tax return depends on whether the capital gain is more or less than the difference between the amount you received and the cost of the repair or replacement.

    If the capital gain is more than that difference, you reduce your capital gain to the amount of the excess. Include this amount on your tax return in the year the event happens. This gain may be eligible for the CGT discount (see How to work out your capital gain or capital loss for more information).

    When a later CGT event happens, you reduce the amount of expenditure included in the cost base of the asset by the difference between the capital gain before it is reduced and the excess. This enables you to defer part of your CGT liability until a later CGT event happens.

    If the capital gain is less than or equal to the excess (the compensation amount less the cost of the repair or replacement), you do not reduce the capital gain and the amount of the expenditure on the repair or replacement included in the cost base (see example 92).

    Money received does not exceed the cost of repair or replacement

    If the amount of money you received is less than or equal to the expenditure you incurred to repair or replace the original asset, you disregard any capital gain. You reduce the expenditure you include in the cost base of the asset when a later CGT event happens by the amount of the gain (see example 91 below).

    Example 91: Money received is less than expenditure incurred

    Gerard’s business premises were destroyed by fire on 15 March 2013. He received $246,000 in compensation from his insurance company.

    It cost him $257,000 to reconstruct the premises, $11,000 more than the amount of compensation he received.

    Gerard made a capital gain of $2,000 because his cost base apportioned to the building was $244,000 at the time of the fire.

    compensation money received

    $246,000

    less cost base

    $244,000

    capital gain

    $2,000

    compensation money received

    $246,000

    less replacement expenditure

    $257,000

    shortfall

    $11,000

     

    As the compensation money does not exceed the repair expenditure, Gerard disregards the capital gain.

    However, the amount of expenditure that Gerard can include in the cost base of the repaired building is reduced by the amount of the capital gain ($2,000) to $255,000.

    End of example

    Example 92: Money received is more than the expenditure incurred

    Assume that, in the previous example, Gerard incurred only $240,000 for repairs and the cost attributed to the building was $230,000.

    compensation money received

    $246,000

    less cost base

    $230,000

    capital gain

    $16,000

    compensation money received

    $246,000

    less replacement expenditure

    $240,000

    excess

    $6,000

     

    The compensation money ($246,000) is $6,000 more than the replacement expenditure ($240,000). The capital gain ($16,000) is $10,000 more than the excess of $6,000. The capital gain is reduced to the excess amount of $6,000.

    Gerard’s capital gain (before applying the CGT discount of 50%) is $6,000. Therefore, assuming he has not made any other capital losses or capital gains in the 2012–13 income year (and does not have any unapplied net capital losses from earlier years) Gerard includes $3,000 ($6,000 × 50%) as his net capital gain for the 2012–13 income year.

    Also, he reduces the expenditure he incurred on the replacement asset by the balance of the capital gain ($10,000) to $230,000. This means $10,000 of the capital gain is deferred.

    End of example

    If you receive an asset

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you receive a replacement asset when the CGT event happens, you can choose a rollover only if:

    • the replacement asset is not a depreciating asset or held as trading stock when you acquire it, and
    • the market value of the replacement asset is more than the cost base of the original asset just before the event happened.

    Consequences of receiving an asset

    If you choose to take a rollover when you receive a replacement asset, you disregard any capital gain you make from the original asset. The other consequences are outlined below.

    Original asset acquired before 20 September 1985

    If you acquired the original asset before 20 September 1985, you are taken to have acquired the new asset before that day.

    Original asset acquired on or after 20 September 1985

    If you acquired the original asset on or after 20 September 1985, the first element of the cost base and reduced cost base of the replacement asset is taken to be the cost base and reduced cost base of the original asset at the time of the event.

    However, you may have to recalculate the first element of the cost base of your replacement asset if the cost base of the original asset included an amount of indexation and you are seeking to apply the CGT discount to a capital gain from the replacement asset.

    Example 93: Asset received

    Jon acquired land after 19 September 1985 which the state government compulsorily acquired on 14 July 2012. The cost base of the land at the time it was compulsorily acquired was $180,000. As compensation, Jon received another piece of land with a market value of $200,000.

    Because the market value of the replacement land was greater than the cost base of the original land just before it was compulsorily acquired, Jon disregards the capital gain made on the disposal of the original land. Jon is taken to have paid $180,000 to acquire the replacement land (that is, the cost base of the original land at the time it was compulsorily acquired).

    End of example

    If you receive both money and an asset

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you receive both money and an asset and choose to take a rollover, the requirements and consequences are different for each part of the compensation.

    You need to separately determine what happens to the replacement asset and the money, having regard to the proportion of the original asset attributable to each type of compensation.

    The rules are then applied separately to the money and to the asset.

    Example 94: Money and an asset received as compensation

    The state government compulsorily acquires land Kris bought in 2002. Its cost base at the time was $150,000 but Kris received compensation worth $160,000.

    Half of the total compensation is money ($80,000) and half is replacement land (market value $80,000).

    Therefore, the cost base of the original land attributable to each part of the compensation is $75,000 (50% × $150,000). Kris bought additional replacement land for $82,000.

    The total capital gain is $10,000 which is capital proceeds of cash and property totalling $160,000 less the cost base of $150,000. Half of this capital gain can be attributed to the money and half to the asset (the replacement land).

    The money Kris received as compensation is less than the amount he paid to buy the additional land. He can therefore disregard the $5,000 of the capital gain that is attributable to the money compensation. He reduces the expenditure on the additional land by $5,000, so the first element of its cost base is only $77,000.

    As the market value of the replacement land is more than that part of the cost base of the original land, Kris can choose to take rollover relief and disregard the capital gain of $5,000 relating to the land.

    As a result, the value of the replacement land ($75,000) forms the first element of its cost base, not its market value ($80,000) when he acquired it.

    End of example

    Indexation or CGT discount

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If a CGT event happens to the replacement asset (for example, a later disposal), you may be able to use the indexation method or the discount method to calculate your capital gain. This applies only if the periods of ownership of the original asset and the replacement asset add up to at least 12 months. For indexation to apply, you must have acquired the asset before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999.

    Main residence – compulsory acquisition

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The main residence exemption can apply to certain compulsory acquisitions (or similar arrangements) which are associated with your main residence but not with your dwelling.

    You can ignore a capital gain or capital loss you make from a compulsory acquisition (or similar arrangement) that happens only to land that is adjacent to:

    • a dwelling that is your main residence, or
    • a dwelling that passed to you as a beneficiary, or trustee, of a deceased estate.

    The main residence exemption will apply to the extent that the land was used primarily for private or domestic purposes in association with the dwelling.

    The maximum area of vacant land covered by the exemption is two hectares less the area of land underneath the dwelling.

    Attention

    This applies to CGT events that happen on or after 29 June 2011.

    You will also have the choice to apply the main residence exemption to CGT events that happen during the transitional period:

    • starting at the beginning of the 2004–05 income year, and
    • ending immediately before 29 June 2011.
    End of attention

    The main residence exemption applies to structures adjacent to a flat or home unit, such as a garage or a storeroom, in the same way as it applies to land adjacent to a dwelling.

    A partial CGT exemption may apply where the dwelling was:

    • not used as a main residence during all of the relevant ownership period, or
    • used for income-producing purposes.

    (See Partial exemption and Dwelling used to produce income)

    The exemption for compulsory acquisitions of part of your main residence can apply to all the relevant CGT events, which is broader than the CGT events that the ordinary main residence exemption can apply to.

    What is compulsory acquisition?

    All levels of Australian government or entities acting on behalf of Government can compulsorily acquire land and associated structures or an interest in land for a public purpose.

    Compulsory acquisition involves your ownership interest in the exempt land being compulsorily acquired by:

    • an Australian government agency (that is, by the Australian, a State or a Territory Government or by an authority of the Australian, a State or a Territory Government), or
    • a non-government entity authorised to do so under a power conferred by an Australian law.

    The acquirer serves a notice on the landowner inviting them to negotiate for the disposal of the asset or part of the asset. This notice should inform the landowner that if negotiations are unsuccessful, the acquirer will proceed to acquire the asset or part of the asset in accordance with its legislative powers. Even if the landowner accepts the initial or negotiated offer, this is viewed to be a compulsory acquisition. This type of negotiated disposal is referred to as an acquisition under the shadow of compulsion.

    This would typically involve:

    • compulsorily acquiring part of the land adjacent to your residence, or
    • compulsorily acquiring a structure such as a garage, storeroom or other structure associated with your flat or home unit.

    Arrangements similar to a compulsory acquisition include:

    • your ownership interest in the land being compulsorily cancelled (however described), including compulsorily terminated or revoked;
    • your ownership interest in the exempt land being varied (however described). For example, removing your ownership right to further develop the main residence. It could restrict your ability to erect structures above a certain level – for example installing antennas or remove your right to dig below the soil inhibiting your ability to undertake any further structural development of the property
    • your ownership interest in the exempt land being surrendered (however described) or varied (however described) under the shadow of compulsion;
    • an interest or right in, or relating to, your exempt land being compulsorily conferred on an Australian Government agency or an entity under a power conferred by an Australian law, for example, compulsorily creating a right of access over part of land adjacent to your dwelling
    • you conferring on an entity an interest in, or right in, or relating to, your exempt land under the shadow of compulsion, for example, compulsorily negotiating an agreement in relation to a temporary right in relation to your main residence. Government could require temporary access through your property to improve property that is used for a public purpose.
    • your ownership interest in the exempt land was conferred on you by an Australian Government agency for a limited, but renewable period of operation, and that ownership interest was not renewed by that agency. For example, a right that you hold over the land is not renewed, such as a Crown lease.

    The exemption does not apply to compulsory acquisitions, or similar arrangements, of adjacent land or a structure where the dwelling to which they relate is outside Australia.

    Example 95: full main residence exemption

    Debbie and Geoff live in a three bedroom house on a small suburban block that is two hectares. In July 2008, the Department of Main Roads commenced negotiations with several home owners in Debbie and Geoff’s neighbourhood to end ownership rights over part of the land adjacent to the dwelling. When their ownership rights end, Debbie and Geoff along with other home owners would not be able to build on that part of the land or conduct any activities on that part of the land.

    The area adjacent to their dwelling on which their ownership right ends is 50 square metres (10 metres wide by 5 metres located along the rear boundary)

    They qualify for full main residence exemption because they have lived in the dwelling throughout their ownership period. This means Debbie and Geoff would be able to apply the main residence exemption to the proceeds they received for the compulsory acquisition which ended their ownership rights.

    End of example

    Choosing how much of the land and associated structures will be part of your main residence

    If your property exceeds two hectares you will need to determine how much and which parts of your property will form part of your main residence exemption area.

    If the land used for private purposes is greater than two hectares, you can choose which two hectares are exempt.

    Example 96: land exceeds 2 hectares

    Robyn’s property is 10.35 hectares. She identifies the dwellings, land and associated structures that are linked to the main residence and are for private or personal use. The driveway was 1500 square metres in area which means that the calculation is greater than two hectares. Robyn decides to exclude 500 square metres of driveway to ensure that the total area of the land is not greater than two hectares.

    End of example
     

    Hectare(s)

    Main Residence

    0.03453

    Swimming pool

    0.004416

    Dam 1 (pump water to landscaped gardens)

    0.35

    Garage

    0.01

    Guest house

    0.01531

    Driveway

    0.1

    Landscaped gardens

    1.485744

    Total

    2.00

     

    Choosing how much land will be part of your main residence when it exceeds two hectares

    Maximum exempt area

    Where you have previously disregarded one or more capital gains or losses for a compulsory acquisition (or similar arrangement) of adjacent land or structure, the maximum area of adjacent land available for the main residence exemption when the dwelling is eventually sold (or otherwise realised) is reduced. The reduced area is called the ‘maximum exempt area’.

    However the maximum exempt area is only reduced by a previous compulsory acquisition or similar arrangement where you lost rights to the substantial use and enjoyment of that land either completely or for at least 10 years.

    This rule ensures you are not disadvantaged by having to reduce your maximum exempt area where you have lost only insubstantial rights to the use and enjoyment of the exempt land. It also ensures that you are not disadvantaged where you lose substantial rights to the use and enjoyment of the exempt land but only for a short term such as under a shortterm lease. This means that such land will remain eligible for a later application of the main residence exemption.

    Examples of compulsory arrangements that do not result in substantial loss of rights to the use and enjoyment of the land might include where an easement is granted over vacant land which still permits the use and enjoyment of the land. Another example might be where the Government compulsorily acquires subsurface land under your main residence. If you did not use or enjoy the subsurface land and the compulsory acquisition did not result in you losing rights to the substantial use and enjoyment of the surface land, then the maximum exempt area would not be reduced.

    Example 97: Reduction in maximum exempt area

    In January 2005, the Government contacted Robyn and advised that they are acquiring 1.40 hectares of her land for the development of a freeway. Part of this acquisition includes the dam and landscaped gardens Robyn had identified as being part of the main residence. The area of the acquisition includes 0.40 of a hectare of Robyn’s main residence.

    Robyn may choose to apply the main residence capital gains tax exemption to the part of the capital proceeds, received for the compulsory acquisition, which relates to the 0.40 hectares of the land Robyn had recorded as being associated with the main residence.

    After the compulsory acquisition Robyn’s property is reduced to 8.95 hectares. The dam and part of her landscaped gardens were acquired by the Government for the freeway. Robyn is not able to revise the land and structures that are associated with her main residence. Her maximum exempt area is reduced by the 0.4 hectares she had previously attributed to her main residence that was acquired by the Government.

    End of example
     

    Hectare(s)

    Main Residence

    0.03453

    Swimming pool

    0.004416

    Garage

    0.01

    Guest house

    0.01531

    Driveway

    0.1

    Landscaped gardens

    1.435744

    Total

    1.6

     

    Reduction in maximum exempt area

    Exemption conditions to be met

    Where you satisfy all of the following conditions any capital gain or capital loss arising from the compulsory acquisition (or similar arrangement) of adjacent land or structure without the dwelling is automatically disregarded.

    The conditions that must be met are:

    • you are an individual
    • the exempt land is all or part of a dwelling’s adjacent land at the time of the CGT event
    • the CGT event does not happen in relation to the dwelling or your ownership interest in the dwelling
    • one of the following applies
    • the dwelling was your main residence during some or all of the period you owned it
    • your ownership interest in the dwelling passed to you as a beneficiary in a deceased estate, or
    • you own the ownership interest in the dwelling as the trustee of a deceased estate
    • the adjacent land or structure is compulsorily acquired or is the subject of a similar compulsory arrangement, and
    • the sum of the following is two hectares or less
    • the area of all of the dwelling’s adjacent land at the time of the CGT event
    • the area of land on which the dwelling is built, and
    • for each earlier CGT event that resulted in a capital gain or capital loss being disregarded under this exemption, the area of adjacent land exempted at the time of the earlier CGT event, but only if that involved reducing the area of the dwelling’s adjacent land at the time of that earlier CGT event.

    This last condition ensures that you will not be disadvantaged by double counting of the same area of land where you have not lost substantial use and enjoyment of the land, for example, a compulsory easement is created over land but you retain ownership of the land affected by the easement, although with diminished rights.

    Where you satisfy all of the conditions apart from the last condition (that is, where the sum of the relevant areas of land is more than two hectares), there is no automatic disregarding of any capital gain or capital loss arising from the compulsory acquisition (or similar arrangement).

    In these circumstances, you can choose to disregard so much of the capital gain or capital loss that relates to an area of adjacent land that is compulsorily acquired (or subject to a similar arrangement) that is not more than the maximum exempt area.

    Record keeping requirements

    With all assets you need to keep records. In this case, you will need to keep records of the transactions or events that provide evidence of your assessment of how the main residence capital gains tax exemption applies to the part of your main residence that has been compulsorily acquired. This includes a record of your calculations of your capital gain or loss and if your property is greater than two hectares.

    To find out more about the recordkeeping requirements in relation to assets and capital gain tax see Keeping records.

    Choosing during the transitional period

    A taxpayer who makes a choice to apply the exemption during the transitional period must do so:

    • by the day they lodge their income tax return for the income year that includes the commencement day, or
    • within further time allowed by the Commissioner.

    The way a taxpayer prepares their tax return for the applicable income year is sufficient evidence of them making a choice.

    However, this does not preclude a taxpayer from making a choice or providing evidence of a choice in a way other than the way they prepare their income tax return for the applicable income year.

    For example, lodging an objection to an assessment in the transitional period would also be sufficient evidence of them making a choice if the basis of the objection were to apply the main residence exemption to CGT events happening in the transitional period.

    The time limit for amending assessments is also extended in cases where a taxpayer wishes to take advantage of the exemption, but their amendment period has expired. The extension to the time limit for amendments will apply where:

    • the assessment was made before the commencement day
    • the amendment is made within the period ending two years after 29 June 2011, and
    • the amendment is made to take advantage of the exemption for CGT events that happen during the transitional period.

    This means that if a compulsory acquisition occurs in the transitional period and the taxpayer’s amendment period has expired for the income year in which the relevant compulsory acquisition occurred, there is a two year time limit from 29 June 2011 in which the taxpayer can seek an amended assessment.

    Attention

    The Commissioner may amend an assessment for the purpose of giving effect to the exemption after the end of the two year period where the taxpayer has requested the amendment before the end of the two year period.

    End of attention

    Marriage or relationship breakdown

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Read this section if your marriage or relationship ended on or after 20 September 1985 and:

    • you transfer an asset or a share of an asset to your spouse
    • you receive an asset or a share of an asset from your spouse, or
    • a company or trustee of a trust transfers an asset to you or your spouse.
    Attention

    New terms

    We may use some terms that are new to you. These words are explained in Definitions. Generally, they are also explained in detail in the section where they first appear.

    When we talk about ‘your spouse’, this includes your former spouse. ‘Transfer’ of an asset means transferring ownership of an asset to the transferee spouse and includes ‘creating’ an asset in their favour (such as a right to use property). Where we talk about ‘an asset’, this includes a share of, or an interest in, a jointly owned asset.

    The term ‘transferee spouse’ refers to the spouse to whom an asset is transferred, while the ‘transferor’ is the person (or a company or the trustee of a trust) who transfers an asset to the transferee spouse.

    End of attention

    As a general rule, CGT applies to all changes of ownership of assets on or after 20 September 1985. However, if you transfer an asset to your spouse as a result of the breakdown of your marriage or relationship, there is an automatic rollover in certain cases. You cannot choose whether or not it applies.

    This rollover ensures the transferor spouse disregards a capital gain or capital loss that would otherwise arise. In effect, the one who receives the asset (the transferee spouse) will make the capital gain or capital loss when they subsequently dispose of the asset. If you are the transferee spouse, the cost base of the asset is transferred to you.

    Conditions for the marriage or relationship breakdown rollover

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    For the rollover to apply, the CGT event must have happened because of:

    • an order of a court or court order made by consent under the Family Law Act 1975 or a similar law of a foreign country, or
    • a court order under a state, territory or foreign law relating to breakdown of relationship between spouses.

    The rollover also applies to CGT events that happen after 12 December 2006 because of one of the following:

    • a financial agreement that is binding under section 90G of the Family Law Act 1975 (known as a ‘binding financial agreement’) or a corresponding written agreement that is binding because of a corresponding foreign law
    • an award made in an arbitration referred to in section 13H of the Family Law Act 1975 (known as an ‘arbitral award’) or a similar award under a corresponding state, territory or foreign law
    • a written agreement that is binding because of a state, territory or foreign law relating to breakdowns of relationship between spouses and because of such law, a court is prevented from making an order:
    • about matters to which the agreement applies, or
    • that is inconsistent with the terms of the agreement for those matters, unless the agreement is varied or set aside.

    These are referred to below as ‘binding agreements used by separating couples. The following agreements relating to relationship breakdowns meet these requirements:

    • a domestic relationship agreement or termination agreement that complies with subsection 47(1) of the New South Wales Property (Relationships) Act 1984
    • a recognised agreement within the meaning of the Queensland Property Law Act 1974
    • a cohabitation agreement that is a certificated agreement within the meaning of the South Australian's Domestic Partner Property Act 1996
    • a personal relationship agreement or separation agreement that complies with subsection 62(1) of the Tasmanian Relationships Act 2003
    • a financial agreement that complies with subsection 205ZS(1) of the Western Australian Family Court Act 1997
    • a domestic relationship agreement or termination agreement that complies with subsection 33(1) of the Australian Capital Territory’s Domestic Relationships Act 1994
    • a cohabitation agreement or separation agreement that complies with subsection 45(2) of the Northern Territory’s De Facto Relationships Act
    • a relationship agreement that complies with subsections 59(1) and (2) of the Victorian Relationships Act 2008 (which came into effect on 1 December 2008).

    Note that from 1 March 2009 the rollover also applies to CGT events that happen because of a financial agreement that is binding because of section 90UJ of the Family Law Act 1975 (known as a ‘binding financial agreement’) or a corresponding written agreement that is binding because of a corresponding foreign law. Section 90UJ relates to agreements made between parties to a de facto relationship.

    In addition, from the 2009–10 income year the marriage breakdown rollover will be extended to same-sex couples.

    Attention

    Timing of the CGT event

    Because certain changes to the marriage or relationship breakdown rollover rules apply to CGT events that happen after 12 December 2006 it is important to know when those events happen. Appendix 1 contains information about the timing of CGT events.

    If an asset is transferred under a contract, the CGT event happens when the contract is entered into.

    • A binding financial agreement may be a contract. The time at which a contract is entered into depends on the terms and conditions of the agreement and the relevant legislation being satisfied such that the agreement can take effect. In the case of a binding financial agreement, a separation declaration has to be made under section 90DA of the Family Law Act 1975 before the agreement can take effect.
    • A binding agreement used by a marriage or relationship breakdown couple may be a contract. The time at which a contract is entered into depends on the terms and conditions of the agreement and the relevant legislation being satisfied such that the agreement can take effect.

    If there is no contract, the CGT event happens when the change of ownership of the asset occurs.

    • Transfers made because of a court order or arbitral award are not made under a contract. Therefore, no CGT event happens until the asset is transferred under the order or award.

    If the asset is transferred under an agreement to which CGT event B1 (see appendix 1) applies, the event happens when use of the asset passes to the transferee spouse.

    End of attention

    Binding financial agreements can be entered into before, during or after marriage or relationship. Arbitral awards allow property and financial matters of separating couples to be settled using arbitration. These arrangements allow separating couples to settle their affairs without having to go through court processes, which are often costly and protracted.

    Additional rollover conditions for agreements that do not require court intervention

    For transfers that happen because of a binding financial agreement, or a binding agreement used by a separating couple, the rollover only applies if at the time of the transfer:

    • the spouses involved are separated
    • there is no reasonable likelihood of cohabitation being resumed, and
    • the transfer happened because of reasons directly connected with the breakdown of the marriage or relationship.

    The transfer may not be directly connected with the breakdown if, for example:

    • the spouses had an agreement before the breakdown of their marriage or relationship stating that the particular property was to be transferred between them for other reasons not directly related to the marriage or relationship breakdown, or
    • the agreement provided for the transfer of non-specific property, the transfer does not occur for a considerable time (say, more than 12 months) after the agreement, and factors are present that suggest the transfer was not directly connected to the marriage or relationship breakdown.
    Relevant CGT events

    For the rollover to apply, one of the following events must happen. The transferor:

    • disposes of an asset to the transferee spouse (CGT event A1)
    • enters into an agreement with the transferee spouse under which
      • the right to use and enjoy a CGT asset passes to the transferee spouse
      • title in the asset will or may pass to the transferee spouse at the end of the agreement (CGT event B1). There is no rollover if title in the CGT asset does not pass to the transferee spouse when the agreement ends
       
    • creates a contractual or other right in favour of the transferee spouse (CGT event D1)
    • grants an option to the transferee spouse or renews or extends an option granted to them (CGT event D2)
    • owns a prospecting or mining entitlement, or an interest in one, and grants the transferee spouse a right to receive income from operations carried on by the entitlement (CGT event D3), or
    • is a lessor and grants, renews or extends a lease to the transferee spouse (CGT event F1).

    There is no rollover for the transfer of trading stock.

    Consequences of the rollover

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention
    You transfer the asset

    If you transfer the asset, the consequences of the rollover are:

    • you disregard any capital gain or capital loss for assets acquired before 20 September 1985, and
    • for assets acquired on or after 20 September 1985, the marriage or relationship breakdown rollover ensures you disregard any capital gain or capital loss you make from the CGT event that involves you and the transferee spouse.
    The asset is transferred to you

    Assets acquired before 20 September 1985

    If a CGT asset, including a share of a jointly owned asset, was transferred to you because of the breakdown of your marriage or relationship and it was acquired by the transferor before 20 September 1985, you are also taken to have acquired the asset before that date. You disregard any capital gain or capital loss you make when you later dispose of the asset.

    However, if you make a major capital improvement to that asset after 20 September 1985, you may be subject to CGT when you dispose of it or another CGT event happens to that asset (see Other capital improvements to pre-CGT assets).

    Assets acquired on or after 20 September 1985

    The rules are different if the asset was acquired by the transferor on or after 20 September 1985. In this case, if you receive the CGT asset (or a share of a jointly owned asset) and there is a marriage or relationship breakdown rollover, you are taken to have acquired the asset (or share of the asset) at the time it was transferred from your spouse (or the company or trustee).

    To calculate your capital gain or capital loss when a later CGT event happens, the first element of your cost base and reduced cost base will be the same as the cost base and reduced cost base of your spouse (or the company or trustee) at the time of the transfer. Your cost base and reduced cost base also include any costs incurred by you or the previous owner (your spouse, the company or trustee) in transferring the particular asset on the breakdown of your marriage or relationship, such as conveyancing costs and stamp duty. General legal costs relating to the breakdown or incurred in seeking a property settlement are not included.

    If the transferor’s cost base includes an amount of indexation, you may later have to recalculate the first element of your cost base to exclude that amount if you want to apply the CGT discount to your capital gain.

    If you acquired the asset from your spouse (or the company or trustee) before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999, you may be able to use the indexation method when calculating your capital gain. This can only apply if your and your spouse’s combined period of ownership is 12 months or more (or your and the company’s or trustee’s combined period of ownership is 12 months or more).

    If you acquired the asset after 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999, you cannot use the indexation method when calculating your capital gain but you may be able to use the discount method. You can use the discount method to calculate your capital gain if your and your spouse’s combined period of ownership is 12 months or more. If the period is less than 12 months, you use the 'other' method.

    Collectables or personal use assets remain collectables or personal use assets when they are transferred from your spouse (or the company or trustee) in the case of a marriage or relationship breakdown rollover.

    For information about collectables and personal use assets, see What is a capital gains tax asset?

    There are several instances where your spouse (or a company or trustee) may create an asset in your favour. The table below explains how to calculate the first element of your cost base and reduced cost base of that asset in each case.

    Table 5: Calculation of cost base

    CGT event

    First element of cost base and reduced cost base

    Creating contractual or other rights (D1)

    Incidental costs incurred by the transferor that relate to the event

    Granting an option (D2)

    Expenditure incurred by the transferor to grant the option

    Granting a right to income from mining (D3)

    Expenditure incurred by the transferor to grant the right

    Granting a lease (F1)

    Expenditure incurred by the transferor on the grant renewal or extension of the lease

     

    You are taken to have acquired the asset at the time specified by the CGT event. For example, for CGT event D1, you acquire the asset at the time you enter into the contract, or, if there is no contract, at the time the right is created. For more information, see appendix 1.

    Capital gains tax assets transferred by a company or trust

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If a company or a trustee of a trust transfers a CGT asset to a spouse, adjustments are required to the relevant cost base and reduced cost base of interests in the company or trust. These may be shares (or indirect interests in shares) in the company, units in a unit trust and other interests in the trust. They are reduced in value by an amount that reasonably reflects the fall in their market value as a result of the transfer of the CGT asset.

    If the transferor is a controlled foreign corporation or a foreign trust, there are special rules for working out the capital gain or capital loss for a subsequent CGT event.

    Attention

    In certain circumstances, the transfer of an asset from a company to a spouse who is a shareholder or an associate of a shareholder may be a dividend. For more information, see Division 7A – overview.

    End of attention

    Example 98: Transfer of assets from a marriage or relationship

    Danny and Claudia jointly owned the following assets immediately before their marriage breakdown:

    Asset

    When purchased

    Cost

    The family home

    January 1985

    $75,000

    Holiday house

    December 1988

    $65,000

    Shares in a company

    March 1999

    $35,000

     

    After their permanent separation in October 2005, the Family Court approved the couple’s agreement and made an appropriate court order by consent.

    Danny transferred his interest in the family home to Claudia in March 2013 under the court order. Because it was acquired by the couple before 20 September 1985 and the CGT rollover applied, she is taken to have acquired Danny’s interest in the home before that date. Therefore, Claudia will not have to pay tax on any capital gains when she sells the home, that is, either on her original interest in the home, or the interest Danny transferred to her.

    Danny has no CGT obligation on the transfer to Claudia of his interest in the family home.

    Claudia’s interests in the shares and the holiday house were transferred to Danny in March 2013 under the court order. The holiday house did not become his home.

    Although the couple acquired these assets on or after 20 September 1985, Claudia’s capital gains from the transfer of her interests in these assets to Danny are disregarded under the marriage breakdown rollover.

    Danny is taken to have acquired Claudia’s interests in these assets at the time of transfer for her relevant cost bases. If he were to sell the holiday home or the shares, he would separately calculate his capital gain or capital loss in respect of his original interest and the interest he acquired from Claudia.

    When he sells the assets, Danny can choose to apply the indexation method or the discount method to work out the amount of any capital gain from his original interests because they were acquired before 21 September 1999.

    Because he acquired Claudia’s interests after that date, he can only choose the discount method to work out any capital gain on them. However, in applying the 12-month ownership test for the purposes of the CGT discount, he can take into account the period that Claudia owned the interest.

    Danny will have to ensure that the cost bases of the interests he acquired from Claudia do not include any amount of indexation.

    End of example

    If these rules apply to you seek help from us or a recognised tax adviser.

    Superannuation interests

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention
    Payment splits

    A CGT rollover may apply if an interest in a small superannuation fund is subject to a payment split on the breakdown of relationship between spouses and a CGT asset of a small superannuation fund is transferred to another complying superannuation fund.

    A small superannuation fund is one that is a complying fund and has fewer than five members.

    Transfer of own interest in a small superannuation fund

    A trustee of a small superannuation fund also qualifies for CGT rollover when the trustee transfers an asset or assets reflecting the entire personal interest of one of the spouses or former spouses to the trustee of another complying superannuation fund for the benefit of that spouse. For the rollover to apply both spouses must hold an interest in the small superannuation fund before the transfer. This allows spouses to separate their superannuation arrangements on the breakdown of their relationship without any CGT liability.

    To qualify for a rollover, the spouses have to be permanently separated at the time of the transfer, the transfer has to have happened because of reasons directly connected with the breakdown of the relationship between spouses and, the transfer has to have been made in accordance with:

    • a court order made under section 79 or subsection 90AE(2) or 90AF(2) or section 90SM of the Family Law Act 1975 or a corresponding foreign law
    • a court order made under a state, territory or foreign law relating to breakdowns of relationship between spouses that corresponds to an order made under the Family Law Act 1975
    • an award made in an arbitration referred to in section 13H of the Family Law Act 1975 (known as an arbitral award) or a corresponding award made in an arbitration under a corresponding state, territory or foreign law
    • a financial agreement that is binding under section 90UJ of the Family Law Act 1975 (known as a ‘binding financial agreement’) and was made on or after 1 March 2009
    • a financial agreement that is binding under section 90G of the Family Law Act 1975 (known as a ‘binding financial agreement’) or a corresponding written agreement that is binding because of a corresponding foreign law
    • a written agreement that is binding because of a state, territory or foreign law relating to breakdowns of relationship between spouses and, that because of such a law, a court is prevented from making an order about matters to which the agreement applies, or that is inconsistent with the terms of the agreement for those matters, unless the agreement is varied or set aside.

    Once the trustee has obtained a CGT rollover for such a transfer, the rollover is no longer available for a transfer of any asset reflecting the personal superannuation interest of the other spouse if that later transfer arises out of the same marriage or relationship breakdown.

    Example 99: Transfer of superannuation interest

    Danny and Claudia each have a personal interest in a small superannuation fund. They reach a binding financial agreement on marriage breakdown which provides that the trustee transfer all of the assets reflecting Danny’s personal interest to another complying superannuation fund. The assets reflecting Danny’s personal interest consist of a parcel of shares and a rental property.

    A CGT rollover will apply to the transfer. Consequently no rollover will then be available to the trustee for any transfer for the benefit of Claudia.

    End of example

    The consequences of the rollover for the transfer of a superannuation interest are the same as for the transfer of other assets between spouses as a result of a marriage or relationship breakdown.

    Cash settlements

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Changes to the law ensure that no CGT liability arises in relation to the ending of spouses’ rights that directly relate to the breakdown of their marriage or relationship, including if they receive cash as part of a breakdown settlement. No CGT liability arises if, at the time the rights end, the spouses were separated and there was no reasonable likelihood of cohabitation being resumed.

    Real estate that was a main residence

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention
    Transfers from your spouse where the CGT event happened on or before 12 December 2006

    If a dwelling, or an interest in a dwelling, acquired by your spouse on or after 20 September 1985 was transferred to you under a CGT event that happened on or before 12 December 2006 and marriage or relationship breakdown rollover applies, you are entitled to an exemption from CGT (when you dispose of it) for the period it was your main residence after it was transferred to you.

    If the dwelling was your main residence, you may only qualify for a partial exemption if:

    • it was your main residence for only part of the period after it was transferred to you
    • you used the dwelling to produce assessable income, or
    • the land on which the dwelling is situated is more than two hectares.

    For more information about the main residence exemption, see Real estate and main residence.

    Keep all relevant records. Make sure you get any records you need from your spouse if you don’t already have a copy, including records that show:

    • how and when they acquired the dwelling (or the interest in a dwelling)
    • its cost base when they transferred it to you.
    Transfers from your spouse where the CGT event happened after 12 December 2006

    If a dwelling (or an interest in a dwelling) acquired by your spouse on or after 20 September 1985 is transferred to you under a CGT event that happened after 12 December 2006, and the marriage or relationship breakdown rollover applies, you take into account the way in which both of you used the dwelling during your combined period of ownership when determining your eligibility for the main residence exemption.

    This means you are entitled to a full exemption from CGT (when you dispose of it) if the land on which the dwelling is situated is two hectares or less, and:

    • during the period your spouse owned the dwelling, it was their main residence and was not being used by them to produce assessable income, and
    • during the period you owned the dwelling, it was your main residence and was not being used by you to produce assessable income.

    If any of these conditions are not met, you may qualify for a partial exemption.

    If the dwelling was not your or your spouse’s main residence during all of your combined period of ownership, you work out the proportion of your capital gain that is taxable using the formula:

    Total capital gain or capital loss

    X

    (number of days it was not your spouse’s main residence during their ownership period
    +
    number of days it
    was not your main residence during your ownership period)
    Number of days in your combined period of ownership

     

    For more information about the main residence exemption, see Real estate and main residence.

    Keep all relevant records. Make sure you get any records you need from your spouse if you don’t already have a copy, including records that show:

    • how and when they acquired the dwelling (or the interest in a dwelling)
    • its cost base when they transferred it to you
    • the extent (if any) to which it was used to produce income during their ownership period (for example, the periods when it was rented out or available for rent) and the proportion of the dwelling that was used for that purpose
    • the number of days (if any) it was their main residence during their ownership period.

    Example 100: Dwelling transferred to you under a CGT event that happened after 12 December 2006 becomes your home

    George and Natalie jointly purchased a holiday home on 0.1 hectare of land. Settlement of the purchase contract happened on 13 March 2011. On 13 March 2013, George transferred his half-interest to Natalie under the terms of an arbitral award.

    Natalie uses the dwelling as her main residence for three years after the date of the CGT event until she sells it. Settlement of the sale contract happens on 13 March 2016.

    Because the dwelling was Natalie’s main residence for three years out of the five years she owned her original interest, she is entitled to a 60% main residence exemption on that interest.

    Because George’s half interest in the dwelling was transferred to Natalie under a CGT event that happened after 12 December 2006 and CGT marriage or relationship breakdown rollover applied, Natalie is also entitled to a 60% main residence exemption on that half interest (having regard to how they both used that interest during their combined period of ownership).

    In working out the cost base of the interest George transferred to her, Natalie adds any relevant costs she incurred after George transferred it to her to the cost base of his interest at the time of the transfer.

    End of example

    Home first used to produce income rule applies to combined period of ownership

    If a dwelling acquired on or after 20 September 1985 is used as a main residence from the time it is acquired and is later used to produce income, the ‘home first used to produce income’ rule may apply. For the rule to apply, the first income-producing use must be after 20 August 1996 and the dwelling must qualify for full main residence exemption immediately prior to it being used to produce income. See Home first used to produce income.

    If the dwelling (or an interest in the dwelling) is transferred to you under a CGT event that happened after 12 December 2006 and the marriage or relationship breakdown rollover applies to the transfer, the CGT main residence exemption rules take into account the way you and your spouse use the dwelling during your combined period of ownership.

    Where the ‘home first used to produce income’ rule and the marriage or relationship breakdown rollover apply and the dwelling (or an interest in the dwelling) was transferred to you by your spouse, you are taken to have acquired it at the time it is first used to produce income for its market value at that time. The first income-producing use may be during your or your spouse’s ownership period.

    Example 101: Home transferred under a CGT event that happens after 12 December 2006 and the ‘first used to produce income’ rule applies

    Harry bought a house on 0.2 hectare of land for $200,000 on 17 November 1999. It was his main residence and was not used by him to produce income.

    On 1 June 2009, he and Anita started living together as husband and wife. Harry moved into Anita’s townhouse and rented out the house. The house was valued at $250,000 at the time.

    Harry and Anita had one child before their relationship broke down in 2012. Harry gave notice to the tenants that the lease on the house wouldn’t be renewed.

    On 1 June 2013, Anita moved into the house with their child. Under a binding agreement entered into on the same day, Harry transferred the house to Anita. A CGT rollover applied. (Anita also transferred her townhouse to Harry under the agreement.)

    Anita is taken to have acquired the house on 1 June 2009 for the market value at that time ($250,000) because it was first used to produce income at that time. The following facts are relevant in determining eligibility for the main residence exemption in this example:

    • Harry acquired the house after 19 September 1985
    • it was his main residence from the time he became the owner
    • the house was first rented out after 20 August 1996
    • the CGT event under which the house was transferred to Anita happened after 12 December 2006 and a CGT rollover applied
    • Anita would be entitled to a partial main residence exemption on the sale of the house
    • Harry would have obtained a full main residence exemption had he sold it just before he began renting it out on 1 June 2009.

    If Anita sells the house under a contract that is settled on 1 June 2019 and it is her main residence until that time, she would obtain a 60% exemption, because it would have been her main residence for six years (1 June 2013 to 1 June 2019) out of the 10 years after she is taken to have acquired it.

    End of example

    Choices made under the CGT main residence rules

    In certain circumstances, you may choose to treat a dwelling as your main residence for a period, even though you no longer live in it (see Continuing main residence status after dwelling ceases to be your main residence) or you are yet to live in it (see Constructing, renovating or repairing a dwelling on land you already own).

    Such choices are not required to be made by a transferor spouse where a rollover applies because the capital gain or capital loss is disregarded. However, there is nothing to prevent the transferor spouse making a choice (for example, as part of the negotiations with the transferee spouse and transferee spouse’s advisers about the transfer of a dwelling or an interest in a dwelling).

    If there was a period when the transferor spouse and transferee spouse had different main residences before they separated, they need to make a choice to:

    • treat one of the dwellings as the main residence of both of them for the period, or
    • nominate the different dwellings as their main residences (and obtain a partial exemption on both).

    Choices relating to the main residence exemption generally need to be made by the day the person lodges their tax return for the income year they transfer or enter into the contract to sell the dwelling (or their interest in it) or another CGT event happens to it. In most cases, the way in which the tax return is prepared is sufficient evidence of that choice.

    For the practical reasons of negotiating a property settlement, any choices the transferor spouse decides to make would generally be expected to be made before they transfer the dwelling (or their interest in it) to the transferee spouse.

    A signed statement could be provided by the transferor spouse to the transferee spouse at the time of the property settlement as evidence of the making of a choice. Such a statement would be evidence that the transferee spouse could use to support the calculation of any capital gain or capital loss they make when the dwelling is later disposed of or another CGT event happens to the dwelling.

    For more information about choices made under CGT, see Choices.

    Example 102: Choice made by transferor spouse to treat dwelling as their main residence

    At the time of negotiating their property settlement on the breakdown of their marriage in 2013, Calvin and Denise discuss with their advisers how to divide their joint assets.

    When she was single, Denise had purchased a townhouse under a contract that was settled on 1 August 1998. She lived in it for three years.

    On 14 August 2001, Denise and Calvin rented a flat and started living together as husband and wife. At that time, Denise began renting out her townhouse. After living together for two years in the flat, Denise and Calvin bought a house. They moved in on 25 September 2003, the date of settlement of the purchase contract.

    Denise continued to rent out the townhouse.

    In 2013, their relationship broke down. Denise and Calvin decided that Calvin would transfer his half share in the house to Denise (where she and their daughter would continue to live) and she would transfer the townhouse to Calvin (for him to live in) under a binding financial agreement.

    Because the townhouse had been Denise’s main residence, she could choose to continue to treat it as such for up to six years of any period of absence.

    In negotiating their binding financial agreement, Denise provided Calvin with a signed statement which indicated she had chosen to treat the townhouse as her main residence for the two years between the time she moved out and the time they bought the house together.

    Because the ‘home first used to produce income’ rule applies, Calvin is taken to have acquired the townhouse for its market value on 14 August 2001 and will qualify for a partial main residence exemption when he sells it. (The period from 1998 to 2001 is ignored from their combined period of ownership.)

    The effect of Denise’s choice is that the townhouse is exempt from CGT for the period between 14 August 2001 (when she moved out) and 25 September 2003 (when she and Calvin bought the house together). So when Calvin sells it, he will get an exemption for that period as well as for the period he lived in it after the marriage broke down.

    If Denise had not made the choice, Calvin would not get the exemption for the period from 14 August 2001 to 25 September 2003.

    End of example

    Dwellings transferred from a company or the trustee of a trust after marriage or relationship breakdown

    If a dwelling (or an interest in a dwelling) was transferred to you from a company or trustee of a trust, and the marriage or relationship breakdown rollover applies to the transfer, you are treated as having owned the dwelling while it was owned by the company or trustee. However, you cannot get the main residence exemption during any part of the period that the company or trustee owned it (even if you lived in the dwelling during that time).

    Therefore, if a dwelling is transferred to you by a company or trustee as a result of your marriage or relationship breakdown, you will be entitled to the exemption only for the period after it was transferred when it was your main residence. You work out the proportion of your capital gain or capital loss that is exempt by dividing the period after the transfer that it was your main residence by the combined period you and the company or trustee owned it.

    See Real estate and main residence for more information about the main residence exemption.

    Consequences of the rollover not applying

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you and your spouse divide your property under a private or informal agreement (not because of a court order, a binding financial agreement, an arbitral award or another agreement or award referred to above), the marriage or relationship breakdown rollover does not apply.

    If this is the case, you must take any capital gain or capital loss you make on the transfer of the asset into account in working out your net capital gain (or net capital losses carried forward to future years) on your tax return for that income year.

    The spouse to whom the asset is transferred is taken to have acquired the asset at the time of transfer.

    Special rules may apply if a spouse receiving property does not pay anything for it or, if the amount paid by one spouse for property owned by the other is greater or less than the market value of the property and they are not dealing at arm’s length. In these cases, the transferee is taken to have paid the market value of the property and the transferor is taken to have received the market value of the property. (You are said to be dealing at arm’s length with someone if each of you acts independently and neither of you exercises influence or control over the other in connection with the transaction. It depends not only on the nature of your relationship but also the quality of the bargaining between you.)

    Example 103: Rollover does not apply

    Laurie and Jennie separated after living in a relationship for four years. To avoid legal costs, they decided that they would divide their assets without involving solicitors.

    During their relationship they had occupied a townhouse owned by Laurie. As part of their informal arrangement, they decided Laurie would keep it. They owned separate household items and decided each of them would keep whatever they had bought.

    They also agreed that Laurie would transfer his half share of their rental property to Jennie in return for $6,000. Under the arrangement, Jennie would also become liable for the whole of the mortgage after the date of transfer.

    Little or no bargaining took place between Laurie and Jennie and no other assets were transferred.

    Jennie is taken to have paid the market value of Laurie’s share of the rental property. (The $6,000 she actually paid and the mortgage liability she assumed from Laurie are ignored.) This is because:

    • a CGT rollover did not apply (as the transfer did not happen because of a court order or a relevant agreement or award), and
    • Jennie and Laurie did not deal with each other at arm’s length in connection with the transfer.

    Laurie is taken to have received the market value of his share of the rental property at the time it was transferred to Jennie. This means, in working out his net capital gain for the income year he transferred the property to Jennie, he takes into account a capital gain or capital loss, based on the market value of his half share at that time.

    End of example

    Deceased estates

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you are a deceased person’s legal personal representative or a beneficiary of a deceased estate, see this section to find out about the special CGT rules that apply.

    Attention

    New terms

    We may use some terms that are new to you. These words are explained in Definitions. Generally they are also explained in detail in the section where they first appear.

    End of attention

    When a person dies, the assets that make up their estate can:    

    • pass directly to a beneficiary (or beneficiaries), or
    • pass directly to their legal personal representative (for example, their executor) who may dispose of the assets or pass them to the beneficiary (or beneficiaries).

    A beneficiary is a person entitled to assets of a deceased estate. They can be named as a beneficiary in a will or they can be entitled to the assets as a result of the laws of intestacy (when a person dies without having made a will).

    A legal personal representative can be either:

    • the executor of a deceased estate (that is, a person appointed to wind up the estate in accordance with the will), or
    • an administrator appointed to wind up the estate if the person does not leave a will.

    Capital gain or capital loss on death is disregarded

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    There is a general rule that CGT applies to any change of ownership of a CGT asset, unless the asset was acquired before 20 September 1985 (pre-CGT).

    There is a special rule that allows any capital gain or capital loss made on a post-CGT asset to be disregarded if, when a person dies, an asset they owned passes:

    • to their legal personal representative or to a beneficiary, or
    • from their legal personal representative to a beneficiary.
    Exceptions to this rule

    A capital gain or capital loss is not disregarded if a post-CGT asset owned at the time of death passes from the deceased to a tax-advantaged entity or to a foreign resident. In these cases, a CGT event is taken to have happened to the asset just before the person died. The CGT event will result in:

    • a capital gain if the market value of the asset on the day the person died was more than the cost base of the asset, or
    • a capital loss if the market value was less than the asset’s reduced cost base.

    These capital gains and losses should be taken into account in the deceased person’s ‘date of death return’ (the tax return for the period from the start of the income year to the date of the person’s death).

    However, any capital gain or capital loss from a testamentary gift of property can be disregarded if:

    • the gift is made under the Cultural Bequests Program, which applies to certain gifts of property (not land or buildings) to a library, museum or art gallery, or
    • the gift is made to a deductible gift recipient and the gift would have been income tax deductible if it had not been a testamentary gift.

    The condition that testamentary gifts of property must be valued at greater than $5,000 before the CGT exemption applies does not apply to gifts made on or after 1 July 2005.

    Tax-advantaged entity

    A tax-advantaged entity is:

    • a tax-exempt entity (for example, a church or charity), or
    • the trustee of
    • a complying superannuation fund
    • a complying approved deposit fund, or
    • a pooled superannuation trust.
    Foreign resident beneficiary

    If a foreign resident is a beneficiary of a deceased’s post CGT asset, any capital gain or capital loss is taken into account in preparing the deceased person’s date of death return if:

    • the deceased was an Australian resident when they died, and
    • the asset is not ‘taxable Australian property’ in the hands of the beneficiary.

    Assets which pass to the beneficiary or legal personal representative

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention
    Main residence

    Special rules apply if the asset was the deceased person’s or beneficiary’s main residence (see Inherited main residence and flowchart 3.6).

    Other real estate

    Even if the property was not the deceased person’s main residence, special rules may mean you qualify for a full or partial exemption when you dispose of it (see Inherited main residence and flowchart 3.6).

    Other assets

    In administering and winding up a deceased estate, a legal personal representative may need to dispose of some or all of the assets of the estate. Assets disposed of in this way are subject to the normal rules and any capital gain the legal personal representative makes on the disposal is subject to CGT.

    Similarly, it may be necessary for the legal personal representative to acquire an asset (for example, to satisfy a specific legacy made). Any capital gain or capital loss they make on disposal of that asset to the beneficiary is subject to the normal CGT rules.

    If a beneficiary sells an asset they have inherited, the normal CGT rules also apply.

    Acquisition of asset

    If you acquire an asset owned by a deceased person as their legal personal representative or beneficiary, you are taken to have acquired the asset on the day the person died. If that was before 20 September 1985, you disregard any capital gain or capital loss you make from the asset.

    Cost base of asset

    Assets acquired by the deceased person before 20 September 1985

    If the deceased person acquired their asset before 20 September 1985, the first element of your cost base and reduced cost base (that is, the amount taken to have been paid for the asset) is the market value of the asset on the day the person died.

    If, before they died, a person made a major improvement to a pre-CGT asset on or after 20 September 1985, the improvement is not treated as a separate asset by the legal personal representative or beneficiary. They are taken to have acquired a single asset. The cost base of this asset, when the legal personal representative or beneficiary acquires it, is equal to the cost base of the major improvement on the day the person died plus the market value of the pre-CGT asset (excluding the improvement) on the day the person died.

    Assets acquired by the deceased person on or after 20 September 1985

    If a deceased person acquired their asset on or after 20 September 1985, the first element of your cost base and reduced cost base is taken to be the deceased person’s cost base and reduced cost base of the asset on the day the person died.

    There is an exception if the asset is a dwelling and certain conditions are met. See Cost to you of acquiring the dwelling.

    If the deceased person died before 21 September 1999, and you choose the indexation method to work out the capital gain when you dispose of the asset (or when another CGT event happens), you index the first element of the cost base from the date the deceased person acquired it up until 21 September 1999.

    If the deceased person died on or after 21 September 1999, you cannot use the indexation method and, when you dispose of the asset, you must recalculate the first element of your cost base to leave out any indexation that was included in the deceased’s cost base.

    Attention

    If you are the trustee of a Special Disability Trust, the first element of your cost base and reduced cost base is the market value of the asset on the day the person died.

    End of attention

    Expenditure incurred by a legal personal representative

    As a beneficiary, you can include in your cost base (and reduced cost base) any expenditure the legal personal representative (for example, the executor) would have been able to include in their cost base if they had sold the asset instead of distributing it to you. You can include the expenditure on the date they incurred it.

    For example, if an executor incurs costs in confirming the validity of the deceased’s will, these costs form part of the cost base of the estate’s assets.

    Choosing the indexation method or the discount method

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If the deceased person died before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and you dispose of the asset (as legal personal representative or beneficiary) after that date, there are two ways of calculating your capital gain. You can use either the indexation method or the discount method, whichever gives you the better result. However, the CGT discount is only available if you are an individual, a trust or a complying superannuation entity.

    Elements of an asset’s cost base can be indexed only if you own the asset for at least 12 months before disposing of it. For the purposes of this 12-month ownership test you are taken to have acquired the asset when the deceased acquired it, not from the date of their death.

    For the CGT discount to apply, you must have acquired the asset at least 12 months before disposing of it. For the purposes of this 12-month ownership test, you are taken to have acquired the asset at one of the following times:

    • for pre-CGT assets, the date the deceased died
    • for post-CGT assets, the date the deceased acquired it.

    Example 104: Transfer of an asset from the executor to a beneficiary

    Maria died on 13 October 2000, leaving two assets: a parcel of 2,000 shares in Bounderby Ltd and a vacant block of land. Giovanni was appointed executor of the estate (the legal personal representative).

    When the assets are transferred to Giovanni as legal personal representative, he disregards any capital gain or capital loss. Giovanni disposes of (sells) the shares to pay Maria’s outstanding debts. As the shares are not transferred to a beneficiary, any capital gain or capital loss on this disposal must be included on the tax return for Maria’s deceased estate.

    When all debts and tax have been paid, Giovanni transfers the land to Maria’s beneficiary, Antonio, and pays the conveyancing fee of $5,000. As the land is transferred to a beneficiary, any capital gain or capital loss to date is disregarded. The first element of Antonio’s cost base is taken as Maria’s cost base on the date of her death. Antonio is also entitled to include in his cost base the $5,000 Giovanni spent on the conveyancing.

    End of example

    Example 105: Indexation and CGT discount

    Leonard acquired a property on 14 November 1998 for $126,000. He died on 6 August 1999 and left the property to Gladys. She sold the property on 6 July 2012 for $240,000. The property was not the main residence of either Leonard or Gladys.

    Although Gladys acquired the property on 6 August 1999, for the purpose of determining whether she had owned the property for at least 12 months, she was taken to have acquired it on 14 November 1998 (the day Leonard acquired it).

    At the time of disposal, Gladys had owned the property for more than 12 months. As she is taken to have acquired it before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and disposed of it after that date, Gladys could choose to index the cost base. However, if the discount method would give her a better result, she could choose to claim the CGT discount.

    If Gladys chooses the discount method she would have to exclude from the first element of her cost base the amount that represented the indexation that had accrued to Leonard up until the time he died.

    End of example
    Collectables and personal use assets

    A post-CGT collectable or personal use asset is still treated as such when you receive it as a beneficiary or the legal personal representative of the estate.

    Joint tenants

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If two or more people acquire a property asset together, it can be either as tenants in common or as joint tenants.

    If a tenant in common dies, their interest in the property is an asset of their deceased estate. This means it can be transferred only to a beneficiary of the estate or be sold (or otherwise dealt with) by the legal personal representative of the estate.

    If one of the joint tenants dies, their interest in the property passes to the surviving joint tenants. It is not an asset of the deceased estate.

    For CGT purposes, if you are a joint tenant you are treated as if you are a tenant in common owning equal shares in the asset. However, if you are a joint tenant and another joint tenant dies, on that date their interest in the asset is taken to pass in equal shares to you and any other surviving joint tenants, as if their interest is an asset of their deceased estate and you are beneficiaries.

    This means that if the dwelling was the deceased’s main residence, you may be entitled to the main residence exemption (see Inherited main residence) for the interest you acquired from them.

    If the joint tenant who dies acquired their interest in the asset on or after 20 September 1985, the first element of the cost base of the interest you acquire from them is the cost base of their interest on the day they died, divided by the number of joint tenants (including you) who acquire it. The first element of the reduced cost base of the interest you acquire from them is worked out similarly.

    Example 106: Surviving joint tenants

    In 1999, Ming and Lee buy a residential property for $250,000 as joint tenants. Each one is taken to have a 50% interest in it. On 1 May 2001, Lee dies.

    On 1 May 2001, Ming is taken to have acquired Lee’s interest for an amount equal to Lee’s cost base on that day.

    If Ming uses the property as his main residence after Lee dies, he may be entitled to the main residence exemption (see Real estate and main residence) for the interest he acquired from Lee as well as for his original interest.

    End of example

    If the joint tenant who dies acquired their interest in the asset before 20 September 1985, the first element of the cost base of the interest you acquire from them is the market value of their interest on the day they died, divided by the number of joint tenants (including you) who acquire it. The first element of the reduced cost base of the interest you acquire from them is worked out similarly.

    For the indexation and discount methods to apply, you must have owned the asset (or your share of it) for at least 12 months. As a surviving joint tenant, for the purposes of this 12-month test, you are taken to have acquired the deceased’s interest in the asset (or your share of it) at the time the deceased person acquired it.

    Example 107: CGT and joint tenants

    Trevor and Kylie acquired land as joint tenants before 20 September 1985. Trevor died in October 2011. For CGT purposes, Kylie is taken to have acquired Trevor’s interest in the land at its market value at the date of his death.

    Kylie holds her original 50% interest as a pre-CGT asset, and the inherited 50% interest as a post-CGT asset which she is taken to have acquired at its market value at the date of Trevor’s death.

    If Kylie sold the land within 12 months of Trevor’s death, she would qualify for the CGT discount on any capital gain she makes on her post-CGT interest. She qualifies for the CGT discount because, for the purposes of the 12-month ownership test, she is taken to have acquired Trevor’s interest at the time he acquired it, which was before 20 September 1985.

    End of example

    Unapplied net capital losses

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If the deceased had any unapplied net capital losses when they died, these cannot be passed on to you as the beneficiary or legal personal representative for you to offset against any net capital gains.

    Life and remainder interests

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    There may be CGT consequences on the creation, surrender, expiry or disposal of a life interest or remainder interest.

    For an explanation of these, see Taxation Ruling TR 2006/14External Link – Income tax: capital gains tax: consequences of creating life and remainder interests in property and of later events affecting those interests.

    Trustee choice to be assessed on capital gains

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Commencing for the 2010–11 income year the trustee of a resident trust may choose (if permitted by the trust deed) to be assessed on a capital gain of the trust. This is allowed provided no beneficiary has received any amount referable to the gain during the income year or within two months of the end of the income year. The choice must be made in respect of the whole capital gain.

    This is similar to (and will replace) the choice available to the trustee of a testamentary trust under the law prior to the 2010–11 amendments, but is not limited to those trustees. Under the previous law (that applied from the 2005–06 income year) the trustee of a resident testamentary trust could choose to be assessed on the capital gains for an income year which would otherwise be assessed to an income beneficiary (or the trustee on their behalf).

    The trustee will be able to make the choice if, for example, under the terms of the trust the income beneficiary cannot benefit from the capital gains. It is only the trustee that can make this choice.

    If the trustee makes a choice in respect of a capital gain then:

    • the trustee will be assessed on the capital gain under section 99 or 99A, as appropriate
    • the capital gain is not taken into account in working out any beneficiary's net capital gain for an income year.

    Example 108: Trustee choice to be assessed

    Marcia is entitled to all the income of a resident trust for the duration of her life. Under the terms of the trust deed, the trust would be wound up on her death and the corpus distributed to Trevor.

    While Marcia is alive, the trustee disposes of some shares in the trust and makes a capital gain. Marcia is not entitled under the terms of the trust to receive the proceeds from the disposal of the shares as Trevor is the capital beneficiary.

    As the capital gain is included in the net income of the trust for tax purposes, Marcia may be assessed on her share of the capital gain even though she is not entitled to benefit from the gain. The trustee can make a choice to be assessed on the share of the capital gain that would otherwise be assessed to Marcia.

    End of example

    Earnout arrangements

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Earnout arrangements are often employed as a way of structuring the sale of a business to deal with uncertainty about its value. In an earnout arrangement, the proceeds for the sale of the business (or assets of the business) generally include a lump sum payment. However, the terms of the sale contract require either the buyer or the seller to make further payments that are contingent on the performance of the business. The right to receive further payments is called an ‘earnout right’.

    There are two types of earnout arrangement:

    • a standard earnout arrangement, in which the seller holds the earnout right and may receive additional payments
    • a reverse earnout arrangement, in which the buyer holds the earnout right and may receive additional payments.

    Draft Taxation Ruling TR 2007/D10External Link sets out the ATO view on the application of the CGT provisions to earnout arrangements. The view taken in the draft ruling is that dealings in earnout rights have CGT consequences that are independent from those that arise from the sale of the business.

    Government announcement: Look-through treatment for earnout arrangements

    On 12 May 2010, as part of the 2010 Budget, the Government announced 'Look-through' treatment for earnout arrangements to simplify sale of business assets.

    Under this measure:

    • additional payments made under a 'standard' earnout arrangement will be treated as relating to the original asset for the seller and will be added to the cost base for the buyer
    • payments made under a 'reverse' earnout arrangement will be treated effectively as a repayment of part of the capital proceeds.

    This change will apply to earnout arrangements any taxpayer enters into on or after Royal Assent of the amending legislation. It also applies, where a taxpayer makes a choice for the changes to apply from either 12 May 2010 or, in limited situations, 17 October 2007.

    For more information on current law treatment, see Draft Taxation Ruling TR 2007/D10External Link – Income tax: capital gains: capital gains tax consequences of earnout arrangements.

    For more information on the Government announcement, see Look-through treatment for earnout arrangements.

    End of find out more

    Information on earnout arrangements are shown at Part O of the CGT schedule.

    Part B – Completing the capital gains section of your tax return

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Item 18 of the Tax return for individuals (supplementary section) 2013.

    Read this first

    Are you an individual?

    If you are completing a tax return on behalf of an individual (rather than an entity), read this part of the guide.

    If you need help completing the:

    Is your entity a company, trust or fund?

    If the tax return is for a company, trust or fund, go to part C of this guide.

    Introduction

    Read part B if you are an individual and a CGT event happened in 2012–13 or you received a distribution from a trust (including a managed fund) that included a net capital gain.

    If you have sold only a few shares or units, or have a managed fund distribution, you may find it easier to use the Personal investors guide to capital gains tax 2013.

    The steps that follow explain how to calculate your net capital gain or net capital loss for 2012–13 and complete item 18 Capital gains on your Tax return for individuals (supplementary section) 2013.

    The labels to complete on your Tax return for individuals (supplementary section) 2013 are:

    • G Did you have a CGT event during the year?
    • M Have you applied an exemption during the year?
    • A Net capital gain
    • H Total current year capital gains
    • V Net capital losses carried forward to later income years.

    Individuals, including individual partners in a partnership, who lodge using a paper tax return, are not required to complete a CGT schedule.

    How to work out your capital gain or capital loss in part A explains how to calculate a capital gain or capital loss for each CGT event or asset using completed examples and the Capital gain or capital loss worksheet (PDF, 198KB). For most individuals, this worksheet is all you will need to work out what needs to be included at item 18 on your tax return (supplementary section). Make copies of the worksheet if you need more than one. If you need help completing the Capital gain or capital loss worksheet, see step 1 in part C (ignore the word ‘entity’).

    If you have a number of the Capital gain or capital loss worksheets because several CGT events happened, you may wish to use the CGT summary worksheet (PDF, 309KB) to help you calculate your net capital gain or net capital loss. Read steps 2 and 3 in part C of this guide (ignoring the word ‘entity’) to find out how to complete the summary worksheet. Then complete item 18 on your tax return (supplementary section).

    Attention

    New terms

    We may use some terms that are new to you. These words are explained in Definitions. Generally, they are also explained in detail in the section where they first appear.

    End of attention

    Step 1 Types of CGT assets and CGT events

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Certain capital gains and capital losses (that is, those from collectables and personal use assets) are treated differently when calculating your net capital gain or net capital loss. See Does capital gains tax apply to you? in part A for explanations of these assets. In particular, you should note that you disregard capital losses from personal use assets and do not take them into account when working out your net capital gain. You can only use capital losses from collectables to reduce capital gains from collectables.

    You need to separate the records of your CGT events into the following three categories:

    • those relating to collectables (for example, jewellery)
    • those relating to personal use assets (for example, a boat you use for recreation)
    • other CGT assets or CGT events, including distributions of capital gains from managed funds.

    Step 2 Exemptions and rollovers

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    There are exemptions and rollovers that may allow you to reduce, defer or disregard your capital gain or capital loss.

    If you applied an exemption or rollover to disregard or defer a capital gain or capital loss, write X in the YES box at M item 18 Capital gains on your tax return (supplementary section). Write X in the NO box if you did not.

    If you are lodging a paper return, write in the code box at M the code from the list below that represents the CGT exemption or rollover that produced the largest amount of capital gain or capital loss deferred or disregarded. If you are lodging electronically, follow the instructions on screen.

    CGT exemption and rollover codes:

    Step 3 Calculating your current year capital gain or capital loss for each CGT asset or CGT event

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Calculate whether you have made a capital gain or capital loss for each CGT event that has happened during the income year. The Capital gain or capital loss worksheet (PDF, 198KB) can help you work this out. Do not include capital gains that are disregarded, deferred or reduced, or capital losses that are disregarded; see Exemptions and rollovers.

    Include the relevant capital gains at this step if you are a small business owner and qualify for one or more of the following small business CGT concessions:

    • 50% active asset reduction
    • small business rollover relief, or
    • small business retirement exemption.

    You apply the concessions to the amount of any relevant capital gains remaining after step 8.

    In calculating your capital gain, you will use one of the following three methods for each asset:

    • indexation method
    • discount method
    • 'other' method.

    See How to work out your capital gain or capital loss in part A for a full explanation of these methods and how to use them to calculate your capital gain or capital loss for each CGT event.

    For a CGT event that happens after 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 to a CGT asset that you acquired at or before that time, you can choose to use either the indexation or the discount method to calculate your capital gain if you have owned the asset for at least 12 months. If you bought and sold your asset within 12 months, you must use the 'other' method to calculate your capital gain.

    If you use the discount method, do not apply the discount percentage until you have applied current year capital losses and unapplied net capital losses from earlier years.

    You also need to work out the amount of any capital gains that you are taken to have made as part of a distribution from a trust. You must use the same method the trustee used in calculating the amount of the capital gain. For more information, see Trust distributions in part A.

    Attention

    Concessions that may apply

    There are special rules if a trust’s net capital gain was reduced by the CGT discount or by applying the small business 50% active asset reduction, or both. The trust should advise you if it has claimed either (or both) of these concessions as you will need to adjust the amount of the net capital gain to be included in your total capital gains (see Trust distributions for more information).

    End of attention

    Step 4 Total current year capital gains

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you do not have any capital gains from collectables, add up all your capital gains from step 3 and write this amount at H Total current year capital gains item 18 on your tax return (supplementary section).

    If you have a capital gain from collectables, deduct any capital losses from collectables (including unapplied net capital losses from earlier years from collectables). Do not deduct capital losses from other capital gains at this stage.

    Any capital gain remaining is added to all your other capital gains from step 3. Write the total amount at H item 18 on your tax return (supplementary section).

    If you received (or are entitled to receive) a distribution from a trust that includes a net capital gain, you also need to include this amount here in your total capital gains. Do not include this amount as a distribution from the trust at item 13 Partnerships and trusts on your tax return (supplementary section).

    If your capital gains from collectables were reduced to zero when you applied your losses from collectables, and you still have capital losses from collectables remaining, then make a note of this amount.

    This capital loss can be carried forward to future years (see step 11).and will be recorded at V Net capital losses carried forward to later income years item 18 on your tax return (supplementary section).

    Step 5 Capital losses

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you have no current year capital losses or unapplied net capital losses from earlier years, go to step 8. Otherwise, read on.

    From your Capital gain or capital loss worksheet, add up all your capital losses for 2012–13 and make a note of this amount. Remember that you do not include capital losses:

    • from personal use assets
    • from collectables
    • that are disregarded (for example, those from assets acquired before 20 September 1985), see Exemptions.

    If you have a current year capital loss, go to step 6.

    If you have only unapplied net capital losses from earlier years and no current year capital losses, go to step 7.

    Step 6 Applying current year capital losses

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    You must apply your current year capital losses from step 5 against (that is, deducted from) any capital gains you made during the year to determine your net capital gain or net capital loss.

    Example 109: Sale of shares and collectables

    Kathleen sold some assets during the year and has the following capital gains and capital losses for 2012–13:

    Capital gain on the sale of 1,000 shares for $6 each on 17 December 2012

    Kathleen bought these shares on 17 November 1998 and each has a cost base of $3 (including incidental costs of acquisition and disposal).

    Capital gain = $6,000 – $3,000 = $3,000

    Kathleen chooses to calculate her capital gain using the discount method.

    Capital gain on the sale of 130 shares for $8 each on 27 February 2013

    Kathleen bought these shares on 10 October 2012 and each has a cost base of $4 (including incidental costs of acquisition and disposal). As the asset was bought and sold within 12 months, Kathleen must use the 'other' method to calculate her capital gain from these shares:

    130 × $8 = $1,040 – (130 × $4) = $520

    Capital loss on the sale of jewellery for $1,000 on 1 April 2013

    Kathleen bought this jewellery for $1,500 and sold it six months later for $1,000.

    She calculates her capital loss as follows:

    $1,000 – $1,500 = $500 capital loss

    Kathleen takes the following steps to complete item 18 on her tax return (supplementary section).

    Firstly, Kathleen writes her total current year capital gains of $3,520 ($3,000 + $520) from her shares at H Total current year capital gains. This is the amount before deducting any capital losses or applying the CGT discount. If Kathleen had made a net capital gain on her collectables (her jewellery), she would also have included it here.

    Next, Kathleen notes her capital loss from collectables on her Capital gain or capital loss worksheet (PDF, 198KB) or on a separate piece of paper. Although she made a capital loss from collectables, she cannot reduce her other capital gains by this amount. However, she can carry this amount over so that if she makes a capital gain from collectables in the future, she can deduct this capital loss from her capital gain on a later tax return. If Kathleen has no other capital losses from the current year or earlier income years, she will now write the amount of $500 at V Net capital losses carried forward to later income years item 18 on her tax return (supplementary section).

    Kathleen still has to complete A Net capital gain.

    End of example

    Example 110: Capital loss on the sale of shares

    Using the facts from example 109, we will also assume that Kathleen has the following to consider:

    Capital loss on the sale of 600 shares for $3 each on 25 June 2013

    Kathleen had bought these shares on 10 October 2012 and each has a reduced cost base of $4 (including incidental costs of acquisition and disposal).

    Reduced cost base

    600 x $4 =

    $2,400

    Capital proceeds

    600 x $3 =

    $1,800

    Capital loss

     

    $600

     

    Kathleen now has a $600 loss she can use to deduct from her capital gains. From the earlier example, we know Kathleen has a $3,000 capital gain calculated using the discount method.

    She has another capital gain of $520 that she calculated using the 'other' method. Kathleen chooses to deduct the first $520 of her capital loss from the capital gain calculated using the 'other' method and to deduct the remaining $80 from the capital gain calculated using the discount method. Working this way gives her the best result:

    'other' method capital gain

    $520

    less capital loss of

    $520

     

    $0

    discount method capital gain

    $3,000

    less capital loss of ($600 – $520)

    $80

     

    $2,920

     

    Kathleen makes a note that she has capital gains of $2,920 calculated using the discount method.

    End of example

    When applying your current year capital losses, you can choose the method that gives you the best result to reduce your current year capital gains. While you will need to consider your own situation, for most people the order that usually gives the greatest benefit and the smallest net capital gain is to apply the capital losses against capital gains calculated using the:

    • 'other' method
    • indexation method
    • discount method.

    Apply your current year capital losses against your current year capital gains and make a note of any capital gains remaining. If you have current year capital losses that can be applied this income year they must be applied here. You cannot choose to defer to a later year any amount that can be applied this year.

    If your total capital losses for the year are more than your total capital gains, you will need to keep a record of the difference. This amount (your net capital loss) is carried over and used to reduce your future capital gains. There is no time limit on how long you can carry forward your net capital loss. If you have reduced your capital gains to zero, do not put anything at A Net capital gain.

    Step 7 Applying net capital losses from earlier years

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you do not have any unapplied net capital losses from earlier years, go to step 8. Otherwise, read on.

    You can further reduce your current year capital gains by your unapplied net capital losses from earlier years.

    You must apply unapplied net capital losses from earlier years against capital gains in the order you made them (for example, use net capital losses from 1998–99 before you use any net capital losses from 1999–2000). You can then apply these capital losses against your capital gains in the manner that gives you the best result. Again, for most people the order that usually gives the greatest benefit and the smallest net capital gain is to apply the capital losses against capital gains calculated using the:

    • 'other' method
    • indexation method
    • discount method.

    Reduce your remaining current year capital gains by any unapplied net capital losses from earlier years and make a note of any capital gains remaining. If you have unapplied net capital losses from earlier years that can be applied this income year, they must be applied here. You cannot choose to defer to a later income year any amount that can be applied this income year.

    You will need to keep a record of any unapplied net capital losses from earlier years. You can continue to carry over these amounts and use them to reduce your future capital gains. There is no time limit on how long you can carry over your net capital losses. You record these at V Net capital losses carried forward to later income years (see step 11). If you have reduced your capital gains to zero, do not put anything at A Net capital gain.

    Example 111: Unapplied net capital losses from earlier years

    Let us also now assume that Kathleen has the following to consider:

    Kathleen has unapplied net capital losses from earlier years of $400 that are not from collectables or personal use assets.

    In our example so far, Kathleen applied her current year capital loss and had $2,920 of capital gains calculated using the discount method remaining.

    Taking this example further, Kathleen would now also deduct the unapplied net capital losses of $400 from earlier income years from her capital gain of $2,920 calculated using the discount method:

    $2,920 – $400 = $2,520

    This leaves $2,520 of capital gains calculated using the discount method.

    Kathleen must use all current year capital losses and all the unapplied net capital losses from earlier years before applying the CGT discount of 50%. In this example, the amount at V is still $500 because this is what she will carry forward as losses from collectables to future income years.

    End of example

    Step 8 Applying the CGT discount

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    You can now reduce any remaining current year capital gains calculated using the discount method by the discount percentage (50% for individuals).

    You cannot apply the discount to capital gains calculated using the indexation method or the 'other' method.

    Example 112: Total capital gains calculated using the discount method

    From our earlier information, we know Kathleen had capital gains of $2,520 calculated using the discount method after applying relevant capital losses. She works out her total capital gains by multiplying her capital gain by the CGT discount of 50%:

    $2,520 × 50% = $1,260
    End of example

    Step 9 Applying the small business CGT concessions

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    If you are a small business owner, you may qualify for one or more of the following small business CGT concessions: the 50% active asset reduction, small business rollover relief or the small business retirement exemption. You can apply these concessions now to the amount of any relevant capital gains remaining after step 8. You may apply the concessions to capital gains calculated using any of the three methods.

    Note: Businesses with turnover of less than $ 2 million can now access the small business CGT concessions via the small business entity test. This will also apply to:

    • taxpayers that do not carry on a business but own a CGT asset used in a business by a related entity
    • an individual partner who owns a CGT asset used in the partnership business.

    For more information, see Capital gains tax (CGT) concessions for small business – overview

    End of find out more

    Step 10 Working out your net capital gain

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The amount of your remaining capital gains becomes your net capital gain, which you write at A Net capital gain item 18 on your tax return (supplementary section).

    It represents the amount you have written at H Total current year capital gains reduced in accordance with:

    • Step 6 Applying current year capital losses
    • Step 7 Applying net capital losses from earlier years
    • Step 8 Applying the CGT discount
    • Step 9 Applying the small business CGT concessions.

    If you have capital losses that have reduced your capital gains to zero, do not put anything at A Net capital gain. If you have any capital losses remaining after reducing your capital gains, you can carry these forward to future income years (see step 11). Again do not include losses from:

    • assets you acquired before 20 September 1985
    • personal use assets
    • other losses that are disregarded.

    Example 113: Net capital gain – A

    Because no other CGT concessions apply to Kathleen she writes $1,260 at A Net capital gain item 18 on her tax return (supplementary section).

    End of example

    Step 11 Capital losses carried forward to later income years

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Your net capital losses amount to be carried forward is the total of any:

    • unapplied current year net capital loss from step 6
    • unapplied net capital losses from earlier years from step 7
    • capital losses from collectables to be applied in future income years from step 4. You will need to keep a separate record of unapplied net capital losses from collectables because you can only use these to reduce capital gains from collectables in later income years. There is no time limit on how long you can carry over the net capital losses.

    Write this amount (if any) at V item 18 on your tax return (supplementary section). Remember to deduct these losses from any capital gains in future income years.

    Example 114: Net capital losses to be carried forward – V

    Kathleen has deducted all her current year capital losses (except those from collectables) and her net capital losses from earlier years from her capital gains in the order that gave her the best result. This means she will only have capital losses from collectables to carry forward to a later income year. Kathleen writes $500 at V item 18 on her tax return (supplementary section).

    Kathleen must make a note of this capital loss for next year, as she did with the unapplied net capital losses from earlier years that she used this year. She must also note that her capital losses this year are capital losses from collectables, as she will only be able to deduct them against capital gains from collectables in a future year.

    End of example

    Part C – Instructions for companies, trusts and funds (entities)

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Are you an individual?

    If you are completing a tax return on behalf of an individual (rather than an entity) and you do not wish to use the worksheets, read part B.

    If you need help completing the:

    Is your entity a company, trust or fund?

    Read this part.

    Do you expect your entity’s total capital gains or total capital losses for the 2012–13 income year to be $10,000 or less?

    Yes

    Work through steps 1 to 3.

    No

    Work through steps 1 to 4. Step 4 will show you how to complete the CGT schedule.

     

    Introduction

    The instructions in this part are designed to help companies, trusts and funds (your entity) to calculate a capital gain or capital loss and to complete the capital gains items on the relevant tax return:

    • Company tax return 2013 item 7
    • Trust tax return 2013 item 21
    • Fund income tax return 2013 item 10
    • Self managed superannuation fund annual return 2013 item 11.

    Funds include superannuation funds, approved deposit funds and pooled superannuation trusts.

    A self managed superannuation fund is a fund with fewer than five members that meets the requirements of section 17A of the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993.

    The labels to complete at these items on your entity’s tax return are:

    • G Did you have a CGT event during the year?
    • M Have you applied an exemption or rollover?
    • A Net capital gain

    You will also need to complete V Net capital losses carried forward to later income years at the Losses information item on your entity’s tax return.

    The relevant item number on each tax return is:

    • Company tax return 2013 item 13
    • Trust tax return 2013 item 27
    • Fund income tax return 2013 item 13
    • Self managed superannuation fund annual return 2013 item 14.
    Attention

    You may need to complete a Consolidated groups losses schedule 2013 or a Losses schedule 2013. Refer to the applicable schedule instructions for full details of who must complete the schedule.

    New terms

    We may use some terms that are new to you. These words are explained in Definitions. Generally, they are also explained in detail in the section where they first appear.

    Entity

    The term ‘entity’ is used to describe a company (including a head company of a consolidated group), a trust and a fund in this part of the guide.

    End of attention

    Worksheets

    The worksheets provided in this guide are the:

    • Capital gain or capital loss worksheet (PDF, 198KB) (to calculate the capital gain or capital loss from each CGT event)
    • CGT summary worksheet 2013 (PDF, 309KB) for 2013 tax returns (to calculate the net capital gain for the 2012–13 income year or net capital losses carried forward to later income years and to complete the CGT labels on the 2013 tax return).

    You can print out the worksheets and complete them as you work through this part.

    The worksheets are optional and your entity may prefer to use a different worksheet or a computer-based alternative. We have used these worksheets throughout this part of the guide as examples to help you complete the capital gains item on your entity’s tax return, and a CGT schedule if this is required.

    CGT schedule

    Your entity must complete this schedule for the 2012–13 income year if the:

    • total current year capital gains are greater than $10,000, or
    • total current year capital losses are greater than $10,000.

    If your entity is required to complete a CGT schedule, you must attach it to your entity’s 2013 tax return.

    In the worksheets and CGT schedule at the back of this guide, ‘current year capital gain’ (CYCG), ‘current year capital losses’ (CYCL) and ‘prior year net capital losses’ (PYNCL) refer to ‘current income year’ and ‘prior income year’.

    Attention

    Consolidated groups

    If a group consolidates during the income year, the head company must lodge a CGT schedule if the total capital gains or total capital losses that it makes (as head company of the consolidated group and while not a member of a consolidated group) are greater than $10,000.

    An entity that has joined a consolidated group or groups during the year of income as a subsidiary member must lodge a CGT schedule covering any periods of non-membership if the entity satisfies the requirements for lodgment of that schedule.

    Detailed information on the operation of consolidation is available at Consolidation.

    End of attention

    Steps you need to take

    The completion of the CGT labels on your entity’s 2013 tax return involves a three-step process (for entities with capital gains or capital losses under the $10,000 threshold) or a four-step process (for entities with capital gains or capital losses over the $10,000 threshold):

    • Step 1 Calculate the capital gain or capital loss for each CGT event that happens during the 2012–13 income year using the Capital gain or capital loss worksheet.
    • Step 2 Calculate the net capital gain for the 2012–13 income year or net capital losses carried forward to later income years using the CGT summary worksheet.
    • Step 3 Complete the capital gains item on your entity’s tax return.
    • Step 4 If required, complete a CGT schedule.

    Step 1 How to complete the capital gain or capital loss worksheet for each CGT event

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    The Capital gain or capital loss worksheet calculates a capital gain or capital loss for each separate CGT event. Do not attach completed worksheets to your entity’s 2013 tax return. These are your working papers and should be kept with your entity’s tax records.

    There are a few things to remember when you are using the worksheet.

    Firstly, you show the type of CGT asset or CGT event that resulted in the capital gain or capital loss.

    Organise each of these under one of the following nine categories:

    • shares in companies listed on an Australian securities exchange
    • other shares
    • units in unit trusts listed on an Australian securities exchange
    • other units
    • real estate situated in Australia
    • other real estate
    • amount of capital gain from a trust (including a managed fund)
    • collectables
    • other CGT assets and any other CGT events.

    Secondly, there are special rules that apply when working out a capital gain or capital loss for a depreciating asset. A capital gain or capital loss will only arise to the extent that a depreciating asset is used for a non-taxable purpose (for example, used privately). You calculate the capital gain or capital loss according to concepts used in the uniform capital allowance provisions. Those provisions also treat as income or allow as a deduction any gain or loss from a depreciating asset to the extent that it was used for a taxable purpose.

    Thirdly, if a capital gain was made, you calculate it using the:

    • indexation method (see note 2 of the worksheet) for capital gains made on CGT assets acquired before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 and owned for at least 12 months
    • discount method (see note 3 of the worksheet) for assets owned for at least 12 months and for which you are not using the indexation method, or
    • 'other' method (if neither the indexation method nor the discount method applies).

    These three methods of calculating a capital gain are explained in full in part A How to work out your capital gain or capital loss and are also listed in Definitions.

    When choosing between the indexation and discount methods, the amounts at (a) and (b) at the bottom of the worksheet do not yet reflect any capital losses or CGT discount you may be able to apply. This affects your choice of the amount to transfer to the CGT summary worksheet, which you can use to calculate your net capital gain or net capital loss.

    Further information

    Organise your worksheets so they are grouped by the type of CGT asset or event and transfer the capital gain or capital loss calculated for each group of worksheets to the CGT summary worksheet. Transfer a capital gain according to the method you used to calculate it and the type of asset that gave rise to it.

    End of further information

    Step 2 How to complete the CGT summary worksheet for 2013 tax returns

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    You use the CGT summary worksheet to calculate your entity’s net capital gain for the 2012–13 income year or net capital losses carried forward to later income years. It also provides the information you need to complete the capital gains item on your entity’s tax return and, if required, the CGT schedule.

    You should include on this worksheet any capital gain your entity is entitled to as a distribution from a trust.

    The CGT summary worksheet is designed for entities that make capital gains or capital losses during the income year. However, you may also find it useful if you are an individual (including a partner in a partnership) who has more complex CGT affairs.

    The CGT summary worksheet differentiates between capital gains from active assets and non-active assets. Generally, an active asset is a business asset the entity owns, for example, goodwill of a business. A share and an interest in a trust can also be active assets if certain conditions are met. You will only need to differentiate your capital gains between active and non-active assets if you are going to apply the small business concessions.

    There are four small business CGT concessions that may apply to capital gains from active assets:

    • The small business 15-year exemption: this exemption, subject to certain conditions being satisfied, means a capital gain is totally disregarded if you or your small business entity has continuously owned the CGT asset for at least 15 years, and
    • you are 55 years old or over and retiring, or
    • you are permanently incapacitated.
    • The small business 50% active asset reduction: this concession provides a 50% reduction of a capital gain for an active asset.
    • The small business retirement exemption: this allows you to disregard capital gains for active assets (up to a lifetime limit of $500,000) if the conditions are satisfied. If you are eligible for this exemption and are under 55 years old just before you choose it, you must pay the amount into a superannuation (or similar) fund.
    • The small business rollover: this enables you to defer all or part of a capital gain if you acquire a replacement asset or make an improvement to an existing asset and satisfy other conditions.

    To find out if your business is eligible for the small business CGT concessions, see Capital gains tax (CGT) concessions for small business – overview.

    Attention

    Active assets

    At Active assets in the CGT summary worksheet (and the CGT schedule), you should only include a capital gain from an active asset that qualifies for one or more of the following three small business CGT concessions:

    • small business 50% active asset reduction
    • small business retirement exemption
    • small business rollover.

    If the asset does not qualify for one or more of these three concessions, include the capital gain at Non-active assets

    Limit on value of assets

    Where the turnover of your entity and related entities exceeds $2 million, the small business CGT concessions are only available if the net value of the assets of your entity and related entities just before the CGT event do not exceed $6 million. For more information see Capital gains tax (CGT) concessions for small business – more changes for the 2007–09 years.

    If your entity is not entitled to the small business concessions, include the capital gain at Non-active assets.

    Life insurance companies

    Life insurance companies, including friendly societies that conduct life insurance business, need to complete two CGT summary worksheets, one for each class of income they derived (superannuation class and ordinary class income). You can only apply capital losses from one class of income against capital gains from that class of income. Combine the details from both summary worksheets onto one CGT schedule, if it is required.

    End of attention

    The following parts in this step relate to the parts of the CGT summary worksheet which in turn match the items of the CGT schedule. Work through each relevant part to complete your entity's CGT summary worksheet.

    Attention

    If you have total capital losses from collectables (including current year and prior year losses) greater than your current year capital gains from collectables you need to complete part 9 of the summary worksheet. Otherwise you only need to complete parts 1 to 6.

    End of attention

    Part 1 Total current year capital gains and losses

    Each group of worksheets you organised at Step 1 corresponds with a column and row in table 1 according to the method you used to calculate your capital gain or loss and the type of CGT asset or event that gave rise to it. To complete table 1 write your entity’s current year capital gains and capital losses for each group of worksheets in the corresponding column and row.

    Attention

    What to include and exclude

    You generally do not include any capital gain to which an exemption (for example, the small business 15-year exemption) or exception applies.

    However, you must include in the Active assets columns capital gains for which your entity may be exempt because it is entitled to one or more of the following:

    • small business 50% active asset reduction
    • small business retirement exemption
    • small business rollover.

    If a capital gain does not qualify for one or more of these three concessions, include it at Non-active assets.

    Do not include any capital loss made from personal use assets at Other CGT assets and any other CGT events. You disregard capital losses from personal use assets and cannot apply them to reduce capital gains.

    End of attention
    Trust capital gains

    Include in row 7 of table 1 amounts of capital gains your entity received from a trust (including a managed fund) other than a capital gain involving a collectable.

    You must use the same method as the method used by the trustee to calculate your entity’s amount of capital gain from the trust. For example, if the trustee used the discount method to calculate a capital gain, you must use the discount method. In some cases, your entity must gross up the amount of the trust’s capital gain. If this applies, you include the grossed-up amount at row 7 as explained below.

    If the trustee used the discount method to calculate a capital gain, you need to gross it up by multiplying the distribution amount by two. Include the result at the appropriate box in row 7 under Non-active asset Capital gains – discount method. Grossing up ensures that any capital losses your entity has made are deducted from your entity’s grossed-up capital gain before the CGT discount is applied.

    If the trust’s capital gain was reduced by the small business 50% active asset reduction, again it needs to be grossed-up by multiplying the distribution amount by two.. Include the result in row 7 at Active assets under the Capital gains – indexation method or Capital gains – ‘other’ method.

    If the trust’s capital gain was reduced by the CGT discount and by the small business 50% active asset reduction, multiply the distribution amount by four and include the result in row 7 at Active assets under the Capital gains – discount method.

    Did your entity receive an amount from a trust during the income year that includes a net capital gain from a collectable?

    If your entity was entitled to an amount of capital gain from a trust resulting from a collectable, include the amount in row 8 of table 1. Do not include these amounts in row 7. You must use the same method as the trustee to calculate your entity’s capital gain from the trust. For example, if the trustee used the discount method to calculate a capital gain, you need to do the same and write the grossed up amount under the Capital gains – discount method column in row 8 of table 1.

    If the trustee used the discount method to calculate a capital gain, gross it up by multiplying the distribution amount by two. Grossing up ensures that any capital losses your entity has made are deducted from your grossed-up capital gain before the CGT discount is applied.

    Amount of capital gain and loss

    Sum each row of table 1 to obtain the amounts at 1A to 1I and sum each column to obtain the amounts at A to F and 1J and 2A.

    Do not apply:

    • capital losses (which are applied at part 2 of the worksheet)
    • the CGT discount (which is applied at part 4 of the worksheet)
    • the small business CGT concessions (which are applied at part 5 of the worksheet).

    Transcribe the amounts at A to 1J to the corresponding A to 1J to table 2 in part 2 of the CGT summary worksheet.

    Part 2 Applying capital losses against current year capital gains

    Part 2A Applying current year capital losses

    In this part, you are calculating the amount of current year capital losses you can apply to reduce your entity's current year capital gains.

    A company is entitled to deduct net capital losses from current year capital gains as long as it has either:

    • substantially maintained the same ownership and control, or
    • carried on the same business.

    For more information, see Continuity of ownership, control, and same business tests in the Guide to tax losses.

    End of find out more

    If your entity has current year capital losses that can be deducted, you must deduct them here. You cannot choose to defer to a later income year any amount that can be deducted this income year.

    You can choose the order in which you apply your entity’s current year capital losses.

    Generally, if your entity is entitled to the small business CGT concessions, it is better to reduce the non-active asset capital gains first. Within the non-active and active categories you usually get the greatest benefit by reducing:

    • capital gains calculated using the 'other' method, then
    • capital gains calculated using the indexation method, then
    • capital gains calculated using the discount method.

    Write your entity’s current year capital losses applied in the order you have chosen (calculated using your current year capital losses at 2A in table 1) in row 2 of table 2. If you do not have any current year capital losses, record zeros in all labels in row 2.

    Attention

    Collectables

    If you have capital losses from collectables you can only apply those to your capital gains from collectables. If your current year capital losses from collectables (1Q of table 1) are greater than your current year capital gains from collectables (1H of table 1) you need to reduce them to the amount of the gain when calculating the amounts in row 2. Any unapplied losses from collectables are carried forward to later income years. Make a note of this amount at Q of table 9.

    End of attention

    Transcribe the total amount of unapplied current year capital losses to K in table 5.

    Calculate the amounts at G to M in table 2 and transcribe to row 1 of table 3.

    Part 2B Applying prior year net capital losses

    In this part, you are calculating the amount of prior year net capital losses you can apply to reduce your entity's current year capital gains remaining after you applied current year capital losses.

    Prior year net capital losses are the unapplied net capital losses carried forward from earlier income years.

    If your entity has prior year net capital losses that can be applied, they must be deducted here. You cannot choose to defer to a later income year any amount that can be applied this income year.

    Does your entity have any prior year net capital losses?

    Yes

    Complete the corresponding boxes in table 3A. Reduce the prior year net capital losses by any adjustment for commercial debts forgiven. For more information on commercial debts forgiven, see your entity’s tax return instructions.

    The amount at Z1 is the amount of prior year net capital losses that is available to be applied against current year capital gains remaining after applying current year capital losses.

    No

    Record a zero in Z1 of table 3A.

     

    Again, you can deduct prior year net capital losses from any remaining capital gains in the way that produces the best result. However, you must deduct them in the order in which they were made, for example, you must deduct a 1995–96 income year capital loss before a 1998–99 income year capital loss.

    Attention

    Collectables

    If you have capital losses from collectables you can only apply those to your capital gains from collectables. If your prior year capital losses from collectables are greater than your current year capital gains from collectables remaining after applying current year capital losses from collectables, you need to reduce them to the amount of the gain when calculating the amounts in row 2. Any unapplied prior year net capital losses from collectables are carried forward to later income years. Make a note of this amount at R of table 9.

    End of attention

    Write your entity's prior year net capital losses applied in the order you have chosen (calculated using your Prior year net capital losses after adjustment from Z1 in table 3A) in row 2 of table 3.

    Transcribe any unapplied prior year net capital losses to L of table 5.

    Calculate the amounts at N to T and transcribe to row 1 of table 4.

    Part 2C Applying net capital losses transferred in

    Transfer of net capital losses is only applicable to group companies with net capital losses transferred in. All other entities record zeros in row 2 of table 4.

    A group company may transfer the whole or a part of a net capital loss to another company where:

    • both companies are members of the same wholly owned group
    • one of the companies is
    • an Australian branch of a foreign bank, or
    • an Australian permanent establishment of a foreign financial entity if the capital loss is for an income year commencing on or after 26 June 2005
    • the other company is
    • the head company of a consolidated group or multiple entry consolidated (MEC) group, or
    • not a member of a consolidatable group, and
    • further conditions in Subdivision 170-B of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 are satisfied.

    You need to apply the net capital losses transferred in to your entity in the order they were received. Your entity must have enough capital gains to absorb the net capital losses transferred in.

    Write the amount of net capital losses transferred in your entity chooses to apply against capital gains in row 2 of table 4.

    Calculate the amounts at U to A of table 4 and transcribe to row 1 of table 6.

    Part 3 Calculating unapplied net capital losses carried forward

    In this part you are calculating the total of any unapplied capital losses from step 2. These unapplied capital losses will be available to reduce any capital gains in later income years.

    Write the sum of K and L at 3B of table 5.

    Part 4 CGT discount on capital gains

    In this part you are calculating the amount of discount you can apply to reduce your capital gains after applying all losses.

    Attention

    CGT discount

    Companies are not eligible for the CGT discount unless they are life insurance companies or friendly societies that carry on life insurance business. These companies may be entitled to the CGT discount for their complying superannuation business.

    End of attention

    Calculate the CGT discount in row 2 of table 6 that applies to the capital gains at V and Y. The CGT discount percentage is:

    • 33 1/3% for complying superannuation entities, or
    • 50% for individuals and trusts.

    Write the amount of the CGT discount in row 2.

    Calculate the amounts at B to H and transcribe to row 1 of table 8.

    Part 5 Small business CGT concessions

    In this part, you are calculating the small business CGT concessions your entity is claiming. For more information about the small business CGT concessions, see Capital gains tax (CGT) concessions for small business – overview.

    Write:

    • the amount of your entity’s small business 50% active asset reduction in row 1 of table 7
    • the amount of your entity’s small business retirement exemption in row 2 of table 7, and
    • the amount of your entity’s small business rollover in row 3 of table 7.

    Write the total amount of the small business CGT concessions your entity is claiming at I to L of table 7 and transcribe those amounts to table 8 at I to L.

    Part 6 Net capital gain calculation

    Your entity’s net capital gain is the amount remaining after applying any:

    • current year capital losses
    • net capital losses from prior income years
    • net capital losses transferred in
    • the CGT discount, and
    • any applicable CGT small business concessions.

    In table 8, calculate the amount of your entity’s net capital gain by taking the amounts in row 2 away from the amounts in row 1. Write your entity's net capital gain in row 3 and 6A.

    Include a net capital gain as assessable income on your entity’s tax return at the relevant item. See step 3.

    There is no Part 7 or Part 8

    Part 9 Calculating net capital losses from collectables carried forward to later income years.

    Only complete this part if you have any unapplied capital losses from collectables from part 2.

    Using the amounts in Q and R transferred from part 2A and 2B, calculate the amount in 3A of table 9.

    Step 3 How to complete the capital gains item on your entity’s tax return

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    In the earlier steps, you calculated your capital gain or capital loss for each CGT event, then worked out your net capital gain or net capital loss.

    Print X in the Yes box at G Did you have a capital gains tax event during the year? at the capital gains item on your entity’s tax return.

    Exemptions and rollovers

    If you applied an exemption or rollover, print X in the Yes box at M Have you applied an exemption or rollover? at the capital gains item on your entity’s tax return. If you are lodging by paper print in the code box at M the code that represents the CGT exemption or rollover that produced the largest amount of capital gain or capital loss deferred or disregarded.

    If you are lodging electronically, follow the instructions on screen.

    CGT exemption and rollover codes:

    If your entity is required to complete a CGT schedule, you may also need to provide details of certain exemptions or rollovers applied at item 8 of that schedule.

    Attention

    If you or your entity receive an amount of capital gains from a trust and the trust applied an exemption or rollover to that capital gain, you do not need to report the exemption or rollover on your income tax return at label M Did you apply an extension or rollover? The trust will report the exemption or rollover on its own tax return.

    End of attention

    Net capital gain

    Transfer the amount at 6A in part 6 of your entity’s CGT summary worksheet to A Net capital gain on your entity’s tax return.

    Losses information

    Add the amounts, if any, at 3A in part 9 and 3B in part 3 of your entity’s CGT summary worksheet and write the total amount at Losses information, V Net capital losses carried forward to later income years on your entity’s tax return.

    Step 4 How to complete the CGT schedule

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Your entity must complete a CGT schedule for the 2012–13 income year if:

    • the total current year capital gains are greater than $10,000, or
    • the total current year capital losses are greater than $10,000.
    Attention

    Consolidated groups

    If a group consolidates during the income year, the head company must lodge a CGT schedule if the total capital gains or total capital losses that it makes (as head company of the consolidated group and while not a member of a consolidated group) are greater than $10,000.

    An entity that has joined a consolidated group or groups during the income year as a subsidiary member must lodge a CGT schedule covering any periods of non-membership if the entity satisfies the requirements for lodgment of that schedule.

    End of attention

    If your entity is required to complete a CGT schedule, attach it to your entity’s 2013 tax return. You should lodge only one CGT schedule with your entity’s tax return.

    If you are lodging a paper tax return and CGT schedule, print and complete the CGT schedule provided. To get copies of the preprinted schedule, phone our Publications Distribution Service on 1300 720 092.

    Print your entity’s tax file number (TFN), name and Australian business number in the boxes provided. The CGT schedule must be signed in the same way that the 2013 tax return is signed.

    Item 1 Current year capital gains and capital losses

    Transcribe the amounts at 1A to 1I for capital gains and from 1K to 1R for capital losses in table 1 on your CGT summary worksheet to the corresponding labels in item 1 of the CGT schedule. For example, transcribe the figure at 1A in table 1 of the CGT summary worksheet to label A Shares in companies listed on an Australian securities exchange in item 1 of the CGT schedule.

    Sum labels A to I in item 1 of the CGT schedule and write the total at J Total current year capital gains.

    Item 2 Capital losses

    Sum labels K to R in item 1 and write the total at A Total current year capital losses in item 2.

    From your CGT summary worksheet, transcribe the amounts at 2B in table 2, 2C in table 3 and 2D in table 4 to the corresponding labels in item 2 of the CGT schedule.

    Sum labels B, C and D in item 2 and write the total at label E Total capital losses applied.

    Item 3 Unapplied net capital losses carried forward

    Transcribe the amounts at 3A in table 9 and 3B in table 5 from your CGT summary worksheet to the corresponding labels in item 3 of the CGT schedule.

    Item 4 CGT discount

    Transcribe the amount at 4A in table 6 from your CGT summary worksheet to label A in item 4 of the CGT schedule.

    Item 5 CGT concessions for small business

    Transcribe the amounts 5A, 5B and 5C in table 7 from your CGT summary worksheet to the corresponding labels in item 5 of the CGT schedule.

    Sum labels A, B and C in item 5 and write the total at label D Total small business concessions applied.

    Item 6 Net capital gain

    Follow the instructions on the schedule to calculate A Net capital gain in item 6 of the CGT schedule.

    Item 7 Earnout arrangements

    Are you a party to an earnout arrangement?

    Print X in the appropriate box at A.

    If you printed X for Yes, as a buyer, provide the information requested below for the earnout arrangement. You will not need to complete D. If you are a buyer in a standard earnout arrangement, you will need to complete B and C. If you are a buyer in a reverse earnout arrangement, you will need to complete B, C and E.

    If you printed X for Yes, as a seller, provide the information requested below for the earnout arrangement.

    Write at B the number of years the earnout arrangement runs for in total.

    Write at C the year of the earnout arrangement you are in.

    For example, if you are in the second year of a four year earnout arrangement, you would write 4 at B and 2 at C.

    If you are the seller, write at D the total estimated capital proceeds from the earnout arrangement.

    Write at E the amount of any capital gain or loss you made under your earnout arrangement in the income year for which this schedule is being completed. If this amount is a loss, print L in the box at the right of the amount at E.

    If you are a party to more than one earnout arrangement you will need to provide details of all earnout arrangements in which you are a party. To do this, attach a separate sheet to the CGT schedule providing the details listed in this item for each additional earnout arrangement.

    Item 8 Other CGT information required (if applicable)

    Small business 15-year exemption

    Write the total amount of any capital gains disregarded by the small business 15-year exemption at A item 8 of the CGT schedule. Do not apply the CGT discount.

    Print in the code box at A the code from the list below that best describes the CGT asset or CGT event from which your entity made the capital gain. If your entity made capital gains from more than one CGT asset or CGT event, select the code which best describes the type of CGT asset or CGT event that produced the largest amount of capital gain.

    CGT asset or CGT event code:

    •  S shares
    •  U units in unit trusts
    •  R real estate
    •  G goodwill
    •  O other CGT assets or CGT events not listed above.
    Capital gains disregarded by a foreign resident

    If you are a foreign resident, you are subject to CGT if a CGT event happens to a CGT asset that is ‘taxable Australian property’. However, if you are eligible for an exemption then you may disregard the capital gain you have made. If your CGT asset is not a taxable Australian property, you do not need to answer this question.

    Write the total amount of any capital gains disregarded by the application of foreign resident exemption at B in item 8 of the CGT schedule. Do not apply the CGT discount.

    Capital gains disregarded as a result of scrip for scrip rollover

    During the income year, did your entity choose a scrip for scrip rollover when an arrangement was made to exchange original interests for replacement interests?

    Original interests are shares or units or other interests (or an option, right or similar interest in a company or trust), while replacement interests are similar interests in another company or trust.

    Write the total amount of any capital gains disregarded by the application of the scrip for scrip rollover at C in item 8 of the CGT schedule.

    Capital gains disregarded as a result of inter-company assets rollover

    A same asset rollover may be available where a company transfers or creates a CGT asset in another company that is a member of the same wholly-owned group, where at least one of the companies is a foreign resident.

    Write the total amount of any capital gains disregarded by the application of the inter-company asset rollover at D in item 8 of the CGT schedule.

    Capital gains disregarded by a demerging entity

    You may be eligible to disregard any capital gains arising from a demerger if you are a demerging entity in a demerger group, see Demerger exemption.

    Write the total amount of any capital gains disregarded by the application of the demerger exemption at E in item 8 of the CGT schedule. Do not include any amounts disregarded by the application of a Demerger rollover.

    After following all these steps, you have completed your entity’s CGT schedule.

    Remember to lodge the CGT schedule with your entity’s tax return.

    Do not lodge your worksheets. Keep these with your own records.

    Appendixes

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Appendix 1 Summary of CGT events

    Disposal

    CGT event Time of event Capital gain Capital loss

    A1

    Disposal of a CGT asset

    when the disposal contract is entered into or, if none, when the entity stops being the asset’s owner

    capital proceeds from disposal less the asset’s cost base

    asset’s reduced cost base less capital proceeds

     

    Hire purchase and similar agreements

    CGT event Time of event Capital gain Capital loss

    B1

    Use and enjoyment before title passes

    when use of the CGT asset passes

    capital proceeds less the asset’s cost base

    asset’s reduced cost base less capital proceeds

     

    End of a CGT asset

    CGT event Time of event Capital gain Capital loss

    C1

    Loss or destruction of a CGT asset

    when compensation is first received or, if none, when the loss is discovered or destruction occurred

    capital proceeds less the asset’s cost base

    asset’s reduced cost base less capital proceeds

    C2

    Cancellation, surrender and similar endings

    when the contract ending an asset is entered into or, if none, when an asset ends

    capital proceeds from the ending less the asset’s cost base

    asset’s reduced cost base less capital proceeds

    C3

    End of an option to acquire shares and so on

    when the option ends

    capital proceeds from granting the option less expenditure in granting it

    expenditure in granting the option less capital proceeds

     

    Bringing a CGT asset into existence

    CGT event Time of event Capital gain Capital loss

    D1

    Creating contractual or other rights

    when the contract is entered into or the right is created

    capital proceeds from creating the right less incidental costs of creating the right

    incidental costs of creating the right less capital proceeds

    D2

    Granting an option

    when the option is granted

    capital proceeds from the grant less expenditure to grant it

    expenditure to grant the option less capital proceeds

    D3

    Granting a right to income from mining

    when the contract is entered into or, if none, when the right is granted

    capital proceeds from the grant of right less the expenditure to grant it

    expenditure to grant the right less capital proceeds

    D4

    Entering into a conservation covenant

    when covenant is entered into

    capital proceeds from covenant less cost base apportioned to the covenant

    reduce cost base apportioned to the covenant less capital proceeds from covenant

     

    Trusts

    CGT event Time of event Capital gain Capital loss

    E1

    Creating a trust over a CGT asset

    when the trust is created

    capital proceeds from creating the trust less the asset’s cost base

    asset’s reduced cost base less capital proceeds

    E2

    Transferring a CGT asset to a trust

    when the asset is transferred

    capital proceeds from the transfer less the asset’s cost base

    asset’s reduced cost base less capital proceeds

    E3

    Converting a trust to a unit trust

    when the trust is converted

    market value of the asset at that time less its cost base

    asset’s reduced cost base less that market value

    E4

    Capital payment for trust interest

    when the trustee makes the payment

    non-assessable part of the payment less the cost base of the trust interest

    no capital loss

    E5

    Beneficiary becoming entitled to a trust asset

    when the beneficiary becomes absolutely entitled

    for a trustee, market value of the CGT asset at that time less its cost base; for a beneficiary, that market value less the cost base of the beneficiary’s capital interest

    for a trustee, reduced cost base of the CGT asset at that time less that market value; for a beneficiary, reduced cost base of the beneficiary’s capital interest less that market value

    E6

    Disposal to a beneficiary to end an income right

    the time of the disposal

    for a trustee, market value of the CGT asset at that time less its cost base; for a beneficiary, that market value less the cost base of the beneficiary’s right to income

    for a trustee, reduced cost base of the CGT asset at that time less that market value; for a beneficiary, reduced cost base of the beneficiary’s right to income less that market value

    E7

    Disposal to a beneficiary to end capital interest

    the time of the disposal

    for a trustee, market value of the CGT asset at that time less its cost base; for a beneficiary, that market value less the cost base of the beneficiary’s capital interest

    for a trustee, reduced cost base of the CGT asset at that time less that market value; for a beneficiary, reduced cost base of the beneficiary’s capital interest less that market value

    E8

    Disposal by a beneficiary of capital interest

    when the disposal contract is entered into or, if none, when the beneficiary ceases to own the CGT asset

    capital proceeds less the appropriate proportion of the trust’s net assets

    appropriate proportion of the trust’s net assets less the capital proceeds

    E9

    Creating a trust over future property

    when the entity makes an agreement

    market value of the property (as if it existed when the agreement was made) less incidental costs in making the agreement

    incidental costs in making the agreement less the market value of the property (as if it existed when the agreement was made)

     

    Leases

    CGT event Time of event Capital gain Capital loss

    F1

    Granting a lease

    for granting a lease, when the entity enters into the lease contract or, if none, at the start of the lease; for a lease renewal or extension, at the start of the renewal or extension

    capital proceeds less the expenditure on grant, renewal or extension

    expenditure on grant, renewal or extension less capital proceeds

    F2

    Granting a long-term lease

    for granting a lease, when the lessor grants the lease; for a lease renewal or extension, at the start of the renewal or extension

    capital proceeds from the grant, renewal or extension less the cost base of the leased property

    reduced cost base of the leased property less the capital proceeds from the grant, renewal or extension

    F3

    Lessor pays lessee to get lease changed

    when the lease term is varied or waived

    no capital gain

    amount of expenditure to get lessee’s agreement

    F4

    Lessee receives payment for changing a lease

    when the lease term is varied or waived

    capital proceeds less the cost base of lease

    no capital loss

    F5

    Lessor receives payment for changing a lease

    when the lease term is varied or waived

    capital proceeds less expenditure for variation or waiver

    expenditure for variation or waiver less capital proceeds

     

    Shares

    CGT event Time of event Capital gain Capital loss

    G1

    Capital payment for shares

    when the company pays a non-assessable amount

    payment less cost base of shares

    no capital loss

    G3

    Liquidator or administrator declares shares or financial instruments worthless

    when declaration is made

    no capital gain

    shares’ or financial instruments’ reduced cost base

     

    Special capital receipts

    CGT event Time of event Capital gain Capital loss

    H1

    Forfeiture of a deposit

    when the deposit is forfeited

    deposit less expenditure in connection with the prospective sale

    expenditure in connection with the prospective sale less deposit

    H2

    Receipt for an event relating to a CGT asset

    when the act, transaction or event occurred

    capital proceeds less the incidental costs

    incidental costs less capital proceeds

     

    Cessation of residency

    CGT event Time of event Capital gain Capital loss

    I1

    Individual or company stops being an Australian resident

    when the individual or company stops being an Australian resident

    for each CGT asset the person owns, its market value less its cost base

    for each CGT asset the person owns, its reduced cost base less its market value

    I2

    Trust stops being a resident trust

    when the trust ceases to be a resident trust for CGT purposes

    for each CGT asset the trustee owns, its market value less its cost base

    for each CGT asset the trustee owns, its reduced cost base less its market value

     

    Reversal of rollover

    CGT event Time of event Capital gain Capital loss

    J1

    Company stops being a member of a wholly owned group after a rollover

    when the company stops being a member of a wholly owned group after a rollover

    market value of the asset at the time of the event less its cost base

    reduced cost base of the asset less that market value

    J2

    Change for replacement asset or improved asset after a rollover under Subdivision 152-E

    when the change happens

    the amount mentioned in subsection 104-185(5)

    no capital loss

    J4

    Trust failing to cease to exist after rollover under Subdivision 124-N

    when the failure to cease to exist happens

    for the company, market value of the asset at the time the company acquired it less its cost base at that time

    for a shareholder, market value of the share at the time the shareholder acquired it less its cost base at that time

    for the company, reduced cost base of the asset at the time the company acquired it less its market value at that time

    for a shareholder, reduced cost base of the share at the time the shareholder acquired it less its market value at that time

    J5

    Failure to acquire replacement asset and to incur fourth element expenditure after a rollover under Subdivision 152-E

    at the end of the replacement asset period

    the amount of the capital gain that you disregarded under Subdivision 152-E

    no capital loss

    J6

    Cost of acquisition of replacement asset or amount of fourth element expenditure, or both, not sufficient to cover disregarded capital gain

    at the end of the replacement asset period

    the amount mentioned in subsection 104-198(3)

    no capital loss

     

    Other CGT events

    CGT event Time of event Capital gain Capital loss

    K2

    Bankrupt pays an amount for debt

    when payment is made

    no capital gain

    that part of the payment that relates to the denied part of a net capital loss

    K3

    Asset passing to a tax-advantaged entity

    when an individual dies

    market value of the asset at death less its cost base

    reduced cost base of the asset less that market value

    K4

    CGT asset starts being trading stock

    when the asset starts being trading stock

    market value of asset less its cost base

    reduced cost base of asset less that market value

    K5

    Special capital loss from a collectable that has fallen in market value

    when CGT event A1, C2 or E8 happens to shares in the company, or an interest in the trust, that owns the collectable

    no capital gain

    market value of the shares or interest (as if the collectable had not fallen in market value) less the capital proceeds from CGT event A1, C2 or E8

    K6

    Pre-CGT shares or trust interest

    when another CGT event involving the shares or interest happens

    capital proceeds from the shares or trust interest that are attributable to post-CGT assets owned by the company or trust, less the assets’ cost bases

    no capital loss

    K7

    Balancing adjustment occurs for a depreciating asset that you used for purposes other than taxable purposes

    when the balancing adjustment event occurs

    termination value less cost times fraction

    cost less termination value times fraction

    K8

    Direct value shifts affecting your equity or loan interests in a company or trust

    the decrease time for the interests

    the capital gain worked out under section 725-365

    no capital loss

    K9

    Entitlement to receive payment of a carried interest

    when you become entitled to receive the payment

    capital proceeds from the entitlement

    no capital loss

    K10

    You make a forex realisation gain as a result of forex realisation event 2 and item 1 of the table in subsection 775-70(1) applies

    when the forex realisation event happens

    equal to the forex realisation gain

    no capital loss

    K11

    You make a forex realisation loss as a result of forex realisation event 2 and item 1 of the table in subsection 775-75(1) applies

    when the forex realisation event happens

    no capital gain

    equal to the forex realisation loss

    K12

    Foreign hybrid loss exposure adjustment

    just before the end of the income year

    no capital gain

    the amount stated in subsection 104-270(3)

     

    Consolidations

    CGT event Time of event Capital gain Capital loss

    L1

    Reduction under section 705-57 in tax cost setting amount of assets of entity becoming subsidiary member of consolidated group or MEC group

    just after entity becomes subsidiary member

    no capital gain

    amount of reduction

    L2

    Amount remaining after step 3A etc of ‘joining allocable cost amount is negative’

    just after entity becomes subsidiary member

    amount remaining

    no capital loss

    L3

    Tax cost setting amounts for retained cost base assets exceed joining allocable cost amount

    just after entity becomes subsidiary member

    amount of excess

    no capital loss

    L4

    No reset cost base assets against which to apply excess of net allocable cost amount on joining

    just after entity becomes subsidiary member

    no capital gain

    amount of excess

    L5

    Amount remaining after step 4 of ‘leaving allocable cost amount is negative’

    when entity ceases to be subsidiary member

    amount remaining

    no capital loss

    L6

    Error in calculation of tax cost setting amount for joining entity’s assets

    start of the income year when the Commissioner becomes aware of the errors

    the net overstated amount resulting from the errors, or a portion of that amount

    the net understated amount resulting from the errors, or a portion of that amount

    L8

    Reduction in tax cost setting amount for reset cost base assets on joining cannot be allocated

    just after entity becomes subsidiary member

    no capital gain

    amount of reduction that cannot be allocated

     

    Appendix 2 Consumer price index (CPI)

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    All groups – weighted average of eight capital cities

    Year Quarter ending
    31 Mar 30 Jun 30 Sep 31 Dec

    1985

    71.3

    72.7

    1986

    74.4

    75.6

    77.6

    79.8

    1987

    81.4

    82.6

    84.0

    85.5

    1988

    87.0

    88.5

    90.2

    92.0

    1989

    92.9

    95.2

    97.4

    99.2

    1990

    100.9

    102.5

    103.3

    106.0

    1991

    105.8

    106.0

    106.6

    107.6

    1992

    107.6

    107.3

    107.4

    107.9

    1993

    108.9

    109.3

    109.8

    110.0

    1994

    110.4

    111.2

    111.9

    112.8

    1995

    114.7

    116.2

    117.6

    118.5

    1996

    119.0

    119.8

    120.1

    120.3

    1997

    120.5

    120.2

    119.7

    120.0

    1998

    120.3

    121.0

    121.3

    121.9

    1999

    121.8

    122.3

    123.4

    N/A*

     

    For an explanation of indexation and how it applies, see The indexation method.

    * If you use the indexation method to calculate your capital gain, the indexation factor is based on increases in the CPI up to September 1999 only. 

     

    Appendix 3 Flowcharts

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Flowchart 3.1

    Treatment of bonus shares issued on or after 20 September 1985

    Flowchart 3.2

    Treatment of bonus units issued on or after 20 September 1985

    Flowchart 3.3

    Treatment of rights or options:

    • to acquire shares where the rights or options were issued directly to you by the company (but not under an employee share scheme) for no payment because you were a shareholder, or
    • to acquire units where the rights or options were issued directly to you after 28 January 1988 by the trust for no payment because you were a unit holder.
     

    Flowchart 3.4

    Treatment of rights or options:

    • to acquire shares where the rights or options were acquired by you from an individual or entity that acquired them as a shareholder in the company, or
    • to acquire units where the rights or options were issued after 28 January 1988 and were acquired by you from an individual or entity that acquired them as a unit holder in the trust.
     

    Flowchart 3.5

    Treatment of rights or options to acquire shares or units:

    • you paid for and which were issued directly to you from the company (but not under an employee share scheme) or trust, or
    • you acquired from an individual or entity that was not a shareholder or unit holder.
     

    Flowchart 3.6

    The capital gains tax (CGT) main residence exemption rules when you sell a dwelling you inherited.

    Real estate and main residence needs to be read with this flowchart.

     

    Flowchart 3.1

    Treatment of bonus shares issued on or after 20 September 1985

    1. Did you acquire the original shares on or after 20 September 1985?

    Yes
     

    Read on from question 2.

    No
     

    Read on from question 4.

     

    2. Is any part of the bonus shares a dividend or treated as a dividend?

    Yes
     

    Read on from question 3.

    No
     

    Read answer 1.

     

    3. Were the bonus shares issued before 1 July 1987?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 1.

    No
     

    Read answer 3.

     

    4. Is any part of the bonus shares a dividend or treated as a dividend?

    Yes
     

    Read on from question 5.

    No
     

    Read on from question 6.

     

    5. Were the bonus shares issued before 1 July 1987?

    Yes
     

    Read on from question 6.

    No
     

    Read answer 3.

     

    6. Are the bonus shares partly paid?

    Yes
     

    Read on from question 7.

    No
     

    Read answer 4.

     

    7. Were the bonus shares issued before 10 December 1986?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 4.

    No
     

    Read on from question 8.

     

    8. Before sale of the bonus shares, were any further call payments made to the company?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 5.

    No
     

    Read answer 4.

     

    Answer 1

    1. The bonus shares are subject to capital gains tax.

    2. The bonus shares are acquired when the original shares were acquired.

    3. The cost base of each original and bonus share is equal to

    • the cost base of the original shares divided by the total number of original and bonus shares, plus  
    • any calls on partly paid bonus shares.

    Answer 2

    1. The bonus shares are subject to capital gains tax if issued on or after 20 September 1985.

    2. The acquisition date of the bonus shares is their date of issue.

    3. The cost base is the amount of the dividend plus any calls on partly paid bonus shares.

    Answer 3

    1. The bonus shares are subject to capital gains tax.

    2. The acquisition date of the bonus shares is their date of issue.

    3. The cost base is the amount of the dividend, plus any calls on partly paid bonus shares.

    Answer 4

    You are taken to have acquired the bonus shares before 20 September 1985 and they are not subject to capital gains tax.

    Answer 5

    1. The bonus shares are subject to capital gains tax.

    2. The acquisition date of the bonus shares is the date when the liability to pay the first call arises.

    3. The cost base is the market value of the bonus shares just before the liability to pay the first call arises, plus the amount of call payments made.

    Flowchart 3.2

    Treatment of bonus units issued on or after 20 September 1985

    1. Did you acquire the original units on or after 20 September 1985?

    Yes
     

    Read on from question 2.

    No
     

    Read on from question 3.

     

    2. Is any part of the bonus units included in your assessable income?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 1.

    No
     

    Read answer 2.

     

    3. Is any part of the bonus units included in your assessable income?

    Yes
     

    Read on from question 4.

    No
     

    Read on from question 5.

     

    4. Were the bonus units issued on or after 20 September 1985?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 1.

    No
     

    Read answer 4.

     

    5. Are the bonus units partly paid?

    Yes
     

    Read on from question 6.

    No
     

    Read answer 4.

     

    6. Were the bonus units issued before 10 December 1986?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 4.

    No
     

    Read on from question 7.

     

    7. Before the sale of the bonus units were any further call payments made to the trust?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 3.

    No
     

    Read answer 4.

     

    Answer 1

    1. The bonus units are subject to capital gains tax.
    2. The acquisition date of the bonus units is their date of issue.
    3. The cost base is the amount included in assessable income, plus any calls on partly paid bonus units.

    Answer 2

    1. The bonus units are subject to capital gains tax.
    2. The bonus units are acquired when the original units were acquired.
    3. The cost base of each original and bonus unit is equal to
      • the cost of the original units divided by the total number of original and bonus units, plus  
      • any calls on partly paid bonus units.
       

    Answer 3

    1. The bonus units are subject to capital gains tax.
    2. The acquisition date of the bonus units is the date when the liability to pay the first call arises.
    3. The cost base is the market value of the bonus units just before the liability to pay the first call arises, plus the amount of call payments made.

    Answer 4

    You are taken to have acquired the bonus units before 20 September 1985 and they are not subject to capital gains tax.

    Flowchart 3.3

    Treatment of rights or options:

    • to acquire shares where the rights or options were issued directly to you by the company (but not under an employee share scheme) for no payment because you were a shareholder, or
    • to acquire units where the rights or options were issued directly to you after 28 January 1988 by the trust for no payment because you were a unit holder.

    1. Did you acquire the original shares or units before 20 September 1985?

    Yes
     

    Read question 2.

    No
     

    The acquisition date of the rights or options is the date of acquisition of the original shares or units.

    Read question 3.

     

    2. Did you exercise the rights or options on or after 20 September 1985?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 1.

    No
     

    Read answer 2.

     

    3. Did you exercise the rights or options?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 3.

    No
     

    Read answer 4.

     

    Answer 1

    1. The shares or units acquired on exercise of the rights or options are subject to capital gains tax.
    2. The acquisition date of the shares or units is the date of exercise of the rights or options to acquire the shares or units.
    3. The first element of the cost base and the reduced cost base of the shares or units is:
      • the market value of the rights or options at the time you exercise them, plus
      • the amount you pay for the shares or units on exercising the rights or options, plus
      • any amount that was included in your assessable income as a result of the rights or options being exercised on or after 1 July 2001.
       

    Note:

    Although the shares or units are subject to capital gains tax, any capital gain or capital loss you make from exercising the rights or options to acquire those shares or units is disregarded.

    Answer 2

    1. If you did not exercise the rights or options, you disregard any capital gain or capital loss on the sale or expiry of the rights or options.
    2. If you exercised the rights or options before that date, you disregard any capital gain or capital loss you make when you dispose of the shares or units that you acquired.

    Answer 3

    1. The shares or units acquired on exercise of the rights or options are subject to capital gains tax.
    2. The acquisition date of the shares or units is the date of the exercise.
    3. The first element of the cost base and the reduced cost base of the shares or units is
      • the cost base of the rights or options at the time of exercise, plus
      • the amount you pay for the shares or units on exercising the rights or options, plus
      • any amount that was included in your assessable income as a result of the rights or options being exercised on or after 1 July 2001.
       

    Note

    Although the shares or units are subject to capital gains tax, any capital gain or capital loss you make from exercising the rights or options to acquire those shares or units is disregarded.

    Answer 4

    If the capital proceeds on the sale or expiry of the rights or options are more than their cost base, you make a capital gain.

    If the capital proceeds are less than their reduced cost base, you make a capital loss.

    Flowchart 3.4

    Treatment of rights or options:

    • to acquire shares where the rights or options were acquired by you from an individual or entity that acquired them as a shareholder in the company, or
    • to acquire units where the rights or options were issued after 28 January 1988 and were acquired by you from an individual or entity that acquired them as a unit holder in the trust.

    1. Did you acquire the rights or options before 20 September 1985?

    Yes
     

    Read question 3.

    No
     

    The acquisition date of the rights or options was the date of the contract to acquire the rights or options or, if there was no contract, the date the other individual or entity stopped being the owner of the rights or options.

    Read question 2.

     

    2. Did you exercise the rights or options?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 4.

    No
     

    Read answer 1.

     

    3. Did you exercise the rights or options on or after 20 September 1985?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 3.

    No
     

    Read answer 2.

     

    Answer 1

    If the capital proceeds on the sale or expiry of the rights or options are more than their cost base, you make a capital gain.

    If the capital proceeds are less than their reduced cost base, you make a capital loss.

    Answer 2

    1. If you did not exercise the rights or options, you disregard any capital gain or capital loss on the sale or expiry of the rights or options.
    2. If you exercised the rights or options before that date, you disregard any capital gain or capital loss when you dispose of the shares or units that you acquired.

    Answer 3

    1. The shares acquired on exercise of the rights or options are subject to capital gains tax.
    2. The acquisition date of the shares is the date of exercise of the rights or options to acquire the shares or units.
    3. The first element of the cost base and the reduced cost base of the shares is:  

    Note

    Although the shares or units are subject to capital gains tax, any capital gain or capital loss you make from exercising the rights or options to acquire those shares or units is disregarded.

    Answer 4

    1. The shares or units acquired on exercise of the rights or options are subject to capital gains tax.
    2. The acquisition date of the shares or units is the date of exercise of the rights or options.
    3. The first element of the cost base and the reduced cost base of the shares or units is:  

    Note

    Although the shares or units are subject to capital gains tax, any capital gain or capital loss you make from exercising the rights or options to acquire those shares or units is disregarded.

    Flowchart 3.5

    Treatment of rights or options to acquire shares or units:

    • you paid for and which were issued directly to you from the company (but not under an employee share scheme) or trust, or
    • you acquired from an individual or entity that was not a shareholder or unit holder.

    Note

    This flowchart does not apply to rights or options for the issue of units by the grantor of the rights or options if they were exercised before 27 May 2005.

    1. Did you acquire the rights or options before 20 September 1985?

    Yes
     

    Read question 2.

    No
     

    Read question 4.

     

    2. Did you exercise the rights or options?

    Yes
     

    Read question 3.

    No
     

    Read answer 1.

     

    3. Did you exercise the rights or options on or after 20 September 1985?

    Yes
     

    Read question 5.

    No
     

    Read answer 4.

     

    4. Did you exercise the rights or options?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 3.

    No
     

    Read answer 2.

     

    5. Were the rights or options ones which were renewed or extended after 20 September 1985?

    Yes
     

    Read question 6.

    No
     

    Read answer 5.

     

    6. Were they exercised before 27 May 2005?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 5.

    No
     

    Read answer 3.

     

    Answer 1

    You disregard any capital gain or capital loss you make on the sale or expiry of the rights or options.

    Answer 2

    If the capital proceeds on the sale or expiry of the rights or options are more than their cost base, you make a capital gain. If the capital proceeds are less than their reduced cost base, you make a capital loss.

    Answer 3

    1. The shares or units acquired on exercise of the rights or options are subject to capital gains tax.
    2. The acquisition date of the shares or units is the date of exercise of the rights or options.
    3. The first element of the cost base and the reduced cost base of the shares or units is:
      • the amount you paid for the rights or options, plus
      • the amount you paid for the shares or units on exercising the rights or options.
       

    Note

    Although the shares or units are subject to capital gains tax, any capital gain or capital loss you make from exercising the rights or options to acquire those shares or units is disregarded.

    Answer 4

    You disregard any capital gain or capital loss on the shares or units acquired from the exercise of the rights or options because the shares or units were acquired before 20 September 1985.

    Answer 5

    1. The shares or units acquired on exercise of the rights or options are subject to capital gains tax.
    2. The acquisition date of the shares or units is the date of exercise of the rights or options.
    3. The first element of the cost base and the reduced cost base of the shares or units is:
      • the market value of the rights or options at the time you exercised them, plus
      • the amount you paid for the shares on exercising the rights or options.
       

    Note

    Although the shares or units are subject to capital gains tax, any capital gain or capital loss you make from exercising the rights or options to acquire those shares or units is disregarded.

    Flowchart 3.6

    The capital gains tax (CGT) main residence exemption rules when you sell a dwelling you inherited.

    Real estate and main residence needs to be read with this flowchart.

    1. Did the deceased person acquire the dwelling before 20 September 1985?

    Yes
     

    Read question 2.

    No
     

    Read question 3.

     

    2. Did settlement of your contract to sell the dwelling happen within two years of the person dying (or did the Commissioner allow you further time)?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 1.

    No
     

    Read question 5.

     

    3. Was the dwelling the deceased person’s main residence just before they died?

    Yes
     

    Read question 4.

    No
     

    Read answer 2.

     

    4. Just before they died, was the dwelling being used to produce income

    Yes
     

    Read answer 2.

    No
     

    Read question 2.

     

    5. From the deceased person’s death until settlement of your contract to sell the inherited dwelling, was it your main residence (or the main residence of an individual who had a right to occupy it under the will or the spouse of the deceased person)?

    Yes
     

    Read question 6.

    No
     

    Read answer 2.

     

    6. From the deceased person’s death until settlement of your contract to sell the inherited dwelling, was any part of the dwelling used to produce income?

    Yes
     

    Read answer 2.

    No
     

    Read answer 1.

     

    Answer 1

    Dwelling is fully exempt

    Answer 2

    Dwelling is not fully exempt (but you may qualify for a part exemption)

    • Dwellings that passed to you before 21 August 1996

    This flowchart does not apply to a dwelling that passed to you before 21 August 1996. Real estate and main residence sets out the rules that apply in that situation.

    • Where the deceased person died before 20 September 1985

    If the deceased person died before 20 September 1985, the dwelling is fully exempt when you sell it. However, if you made a major capital improvement to the dwelling on or after 20 September 1985 and have used it to produce assessable income it may be subject to CGT (see Real estate and main residence).

    Appendix 4 Definitions

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Amount of capital gains from a trust (including a managed fund)

    Distributions from trusts can include different amounts but only the following types of amounts are relevant for CGT purposes:

    • distributions of all or a part of the trust’s income where the trust’s net income for tax purposes includes a net capital gain,
    • distributions or other entitlements described as being referable to a specific capital gain or gains
    • distributions of non-assessable amounts.

    For more information on trusts, see Trust distributions.

    Assessable income

    Assessable income is all the income you have received that should be included on your tax return. Generally, assessable income does not include non-assessable payments from a unit trust, including a managed fund.

    Adjusted Division 6 percentage

    Under recently enacted legislation relating to trusts, a beneficiary's adjusted Division 6 percentage is the percentage of the income of the trust estate (disregarding any amount of a capital gain or a franked distribution to which any beneficiary or the trustee is specifically entitled) that they are presently entitled to.

    For more information see Improving the taxation of trust income.

    End of find out more

    Bonus shares

    Bonus shares are additional shares a shareholder receives wholly or partly as a dividend. You may also be required to pay an amount to get them.

    Bonus units

    Bonus units are additional units a unit holder receives from the trust. You may also be required to pay an amount to get them.

    Call on shares

    A company may sometimes issue a partly paid share and then make a call to pay up part or all of the remaining outstanding balance.

    Capital gain

    You may make a capital gain from a CGT event such as the sale of an asset. Generally, your capital gain is the difference between your asset’s cost base (what you paid for it) and your capital proceeds (what you received for it). You can also make a capital gain if a managed fund distributes an amount described as a capital gain to you.

    Under recently enacted legislation, you may make a capital if you are:

    • specifically entitled to an amount of a capital gain made by the trust, and/or
    • there is an amount of capital gain included in the income of the trust to which no entity is specifically entitled and you are presently entitled to a share of that income.

    For more information see Improving the taxation of trust income.

    End of find out more

    Capital gains disregarded by a foreign resident

    If a foreign resident or the trustee of a foreign trust for CGT purposes has a CGT event happen during the income year, to a CGT asset that is not considered to be taxable Australian property, any capital gain or capital loss made is disregarded under Division 855 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997.

    For more information see foreign residents and taxable Australian property.

    Capital gains tax

    Capital gains tax (CGT) refers to the income tax you pay on any net capital gain you make and include on your annual income tax return. For example, when you sell (or otherwise dispose of) an asset as part of a CGT event, you are subject to CGT.

    Capital improvement

    A capital improvement does not include a repair that is deductible for income tax purposes.

    Capital loss

    Generally, you may make a capital loss as a result of a CGT event if you received less capital proceeds for an asset than its reduced cost base (what you paid for it).

    Capital proceeds

    Capital proceeds is the term used to describe the amount of money or the value of any property you receive or are entitled to receive as a result of a CGT event. For shares or units, capital proceeds may be:

    • the amount you receive from the purchaser
    • the value of shares (or units) you receive on a demerger
    • the value of shares (or units) and the amount of cash you receive on a merger or takeover, or
    • their market value if you give them away.

    CGT asset

    CGT assets include shares, units in a unit trust, collectables (such as jewellery), assets for personal use (such as furniture or a boat) and other assets (such as an investment property).

    CGT-concession amounts

    These amounts are the CGT discount component of any actual distribution from a managed fund.

    CGT discount

    The CGT discount is the amount (or percentage) by which a capital gain may be reduced under the discount method (see The discount method).

    CGT event

    A CGT event happens when a transaction takes place such as the sale of a CGT asset. The result is usually a capital gain or capital loss.

    Collectables

    A collectable is an artwork, an item of jewellery, an antique, a coin, a medallion, a rare folio, a rare manuscript, a rare book, a postage stamp or a first day cover that is used or kept mainly for personal use or enjoyment. Collectables also include an interest in any of the listed items, a debt that arises from any of those items or an option or right to acquire any of those items.

    Consolidation rules

    Effective from 1 July 2002. Consolidation refers to taxing wholly owned groups as single entities, and enables assets to be transferred between members of a group without triggering capital gains or requiring cost base adjustments for membership interests. Subsidiary members are treated as part of the head company. Intra-group transactions are disregarded for income tax purposes.

    Convertible note

    A convertible note is another type of investment you can make in a company or unit trust. A convertible note earns interest on the amount you pay to acquire the note until the note’s expiry date. On expiry of the note, you can either ask for the return of the money paid or convert that amount to acquire new shares or units.

    Cost base

    The cost base of an asset is generally what it costs you. It is made up of five elements:

    • money you paid or property you gave for the asset
    • incidental costs of acquiring or selling it (for example, brokerage and stamp duty)
    • costs of owning it (generally this will not apply to shares or units because you will usually have claimed or be entitled to claim these costs as tax deductions)
    • costs associated with increasing or preserving its value or installing or moving it, and
    • what it has cost you to preserve or defend your title or rights to it, for example, if you paid a call on shares.

    You may need to reduce the cost base for a share or unit by the amount of any non-assessable payment you receive from the company or fund.

    Debt forgiveness

    A debt is forgiven if you are freed from the obligation to pay it. A commercial debt that is forgiven may reduce your capital loss, your cost base or your reduced cost base.

    Demerger

    A demerger involves the restructuring of a corporate or trust group by splitting its operations into two or more entities or groups. Under a demerger, the owners of the head entity of the group acquire a direct interest in an entity (demerged entity) that was formerly part of the group.

    Demerger exemption

    This exemption applies to disregard certain capital gains or capital losses made by a demerging entity in a demerger group. A demerger group comprises the head entity of a group of companies or trusts and at least one demerger subsidiary. Discretionary trusts and superannuation funds cannot be members of a demerger group.

    Demerger rollover

    This may apply to CGT events that happened on or after 1 July 2002 to interests that you own in the head entity of a demerger group where a company or trust is demerged from the group. Generally, the head entity undertaking the demerger will advise owners whether demerger rollover is available but you should seek our advice if you are in any doubt. We may have provided advice in the form of a class ruling on a specific demerger, confirming that the rollover is available.

    This rollover allows you to defer your CGT obligation until a later CGT event happens to your original or your new shares or units.

    Demutualisation

    A company demutualises when it changes its membership interests to shares. If you received shares as part of a demutualisation of an Australian insurance company (for example, AMP, IOOF or NRMA), you are not subject to CGT until you sell the shares or another CGT event happens.

    Usually the company will advise you of your cost base for the shares you received. The company may give you the choice of keeping the shares they have given you or of selling them and giving you the capital proceeds.

    Depreciating assets

    A depreciating asset is an asset that has a limited effective life and can reasonably be expected to decline in value over the time it is used. Depreciating assets include items such as computers, tools, furniture and motor vehicles.

    Land and items of trading stock are specifically excluded from the definition of depreciating asset, as are most intangible assets such as options, rights and goodwill.

    Discount method

    The discount method is one of the ways to calculate your capital gain if:

    • the CGT event happened after 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999
    • you acquired the asset at least 12 months before the CGT event.

    If you use the discount method, you do not index the cost base but you may be able to reduce your capital gain by the CGT discount. However, you must first reduce your capital gains by the amount of any capital losses made in the year and any unapplied net capital losses from earlier years. You discount any remaining capital gain.

    If you acquired the asset before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999, you may be able to choose either the discount method or the indexation method, whichever gives you the better result.

    Discounted capital gain

    A discounted capital gain is a capital gain that has been reduced by the CGT discount. If you received the discounted capital gain from a managed fund you will need to gross up the amount before you apply any capital losses and then the CGT discount.

    Disposal of assets by a trust to a company

    You can apply a rollover if a trust restructures and disposes of all of its assets to a company and the units or interests in the trust are replaced by shares in the company.

    Disposal or creation of assets in a wholly-owned company

    A rollover may be chosen to defer the capital gain if:

    • you dispose of a CGT asset, or all the assets of a business, to a company in which you own all the shares, or you create a CGT asset in such a company
    • all the partners in a partnership dispose of partnership property to a company in which they all own shares or the partners create a CGT asset in such a company.

    Dividend reinvestment plans

    Under these plans, shareholders can choose to have their dividend used to acquire additional shares in the company instead of receiving a cash payment. For CGT purposes, you are treated as if you received a cash dividend and then used it to buy additional shares. Each share (or parcel of shares) received in this way is treated as a separate asset when the shares are issued to you.

    Dwelling

    A dwelling is anything that is used wholly or mainly for residential accommodation. Examples of a dwelling are a home, an apartment, a strata title unit or a unit in a retirement village.

    Employee share schemes (ESS)

    If you acquired shares or rights at a discount under an ESS and the scheme complies with the income tax rules for certain ESSs, you may reduce the amount of the discount that you include in your assessable income by up to $1,000 when certain conditions are met. There are special CGT rules relating to the calculation of the cost base of these shares or rights and, in some circumstances, you disregard the capital gain or capital loss that you make.

    Exchange of rights or options

    You may apply a rollover to defer the capital gain when you exchange rights or options to acquire shares in a company or units in a unit trust.

    This rollover is a type of replacement asset rollover.

    Exchange of share in one company for share in another company

    You may apply a rollover to defer the capital gain when you exchange shares in one company for shares in an interposed company.

    This rollover is a type of replacement asset rollover.

    Exchange of shares or units

    A rollover may be chosen to defer the capital gain if you exchange shares in the same company or units in the same unit trust.

    This rollover is a type of replacement asset rollover.

    Exchange of units in a unit trust for share in a company

    You can apply a rollover to defer the capital gain when you exchange units in a unit trust for shares in a company due to a reorganisation.

    Extra capital gains

    Under recently enacted legislation, a beneficiary of a trust who has a share of a capital gain that was included in the net income of the trust for tax purposes, will include an amount of extra capital gains when working out their own net capital gain. The amount of extra capital gains will depend on the beneficiary's share of a capital gain/s, the amount of the taxable income of the trust that relates to beneficiary's share of the capital gain/s and whether any discounts or concessions were applied by the trustee when working out the amount of the capital gain for tax purposes.

    For more information see Improving the taxation of trust income.

    End of find out more

    Gross up

    Grossing up applies to unit holders who are entitled to a share of the fund’s income that includes a capital gain reduced by the CGT discount. In this case, you ‘gross up’ your capital gain by multiplying by two your share of any discounted capital gain you have received from the fund. You may also have to gross up a capital gain that was reduced by the small business 50% active asset reduction.

    Income year

    A financial year in Australia is a period of 12 months beginning on 1 July and ending on the next 30 June. An income year is the period covered by your tax return, generally 1 July to the next 30 June. However, in particular circumstances, the Commissioner may allow a company or other entity to adopt another 12-month period for their income year.

    Indexation factor

    The indexation factor is worked out based on the consumer price index (CPI) at appendix 2.

    The indexation of the cost base of an asset is frozen as at 30 September 1999. For CGT events after that time, the indexation factor is the CPI for the September 1999 quarter (123.4), divided by the CPI for the quarter in which you incurred costs relating to the asset. The result is taken to three decimal places rounding up if the fourth decimal place is five or more.

    Indexation method

    The indexation method is one of the ways to calculate your capital gain if you acquired a CGT asset before 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999. This method allows you to increase the cost base by applying an indexation factor (based on increases in the consumer price index up to September 1999).

    You cannot use the indexation method for:

    • CGT assets acquired after 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999
    • expenditure relating to a CGT asset acquired after that date.

    For CGT events after 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999 the discount method may give you the better result.

    Inter-company asset rollover

    A same asset rollover is available where a company transfers or creates (CGT event) a CGT asset in another company that is a member of the same wholly-owned group, but one of the companies is a non-resident.

    Legal personal representative

    A legal personal representative can be either:

    • the executor of a deceased estate (that is, a person appointed to wind up the estate in accordance with the will)
    • an administrator appointed to wind up the estate if the person does not leave a will.

    LIC capital gain amount

    This is an amount notionally included in a dividend from a listed investment company (LIC) which represents a capital gain made by that company. The amount is not included as a capital gain at item 18 on the tax return (supplementary section). See example 47 and the instructions for dividend income for question 11 in Individual tax return instructions 2013.

    Main residence

    Your main residence is your home, that is, the dwelling you regard as your main place of residence and nominate as such for any CGT concessions dealing with the disposal of a main residence. See Is the dwelling your main residence? for more information.

    Main residence exemption

    Generally, you can ignore a capital gain or capital loss from a CGT event that happens to a dwelling that is your main residence (also referred to as ‘your home’). You may make a capital gain or capital loss if you have used your home to produce income, if it was not your home for the full period you owned it or if the land around your home is more than two hectares.

    Managed fund

    A managed fund is a unit trust. The types of managed funds available include cash management trusts, fixed interest trusts, mortgage trusts, property trusts, equity trusts, international trusts and diversified trusts.

    Market value substitution rule for capital proceeds

    In some cases, if you receive nothing in exchange for a CGT asset (for example, if you give it away as a gift) you are taken to have received the market value of the asset at the time of the CGT event. You may also be taken to have received the market value if your capital proceeds are more or less than the market value of the CGT asset, and you and the purchaser were not dealing with each other at arm’s length in connection with the event.

    You are said to be dealing at arm’s length with someone if each party acts independently and neither party exercises influence or control over the other in connection with the transaction. The law looks at not only the relationship between the parties but also the quality of the bargaining between them.

    Market value substitution rule for cost base and reduced cost base

    In some cases, the general rules for calculating the cost base and reduced cost base have to be modified. For example, the market value may be substituted for the first element of the cost base and reduced cost base if:

    • you did not incur expenditure to acquire the asset
    • some or all of the expenditure you incurred cannot be valued, or
    • you did not deal at arm’s length with the previous owner in acquiring the asset.

    Net capital gain

    A net capital gain is the difference between your total capital gains for the year and the total of your capital losses for the year and unapplied net capital losses from earlier years, less any CGT discount and small business CGT concessions to which you are entitled.

    Net capital loss

    If your total capital losses for the year are more than your total capital gains, the difference is your net capital loss for the year. This loss can be carried forward and deducted from capital gains you make in later years. There is no time limit on how long you can carry forward a net capital loss.

    Capital losses from collectables can only be used to reduce capital gains from collectables. If your total capital losses from collectables for the year are more than your total capital gains from collectables, you have a net capital loss from collectables for the year. This loss is carried forward and deducted from capital gains from collectables in later years. There is no time limit on how long you can carry forward a net capital loss from a collectable.

    Non-assessable payment

    A non-assessable payment is a payment received from a company or fund that is not assessed as part of your income on your tax return.

    This includes some distributions from unit trusts, managed funds and companies.

    'other' method

    To calculate your capital gain using the 'other' method, you subtract your cost base from your capital proceeds. You must use this method for any shares or units you have bought and sold within 12 months (that is, when the indexation and discount methods do not apply).

    Other CGT assets and any other CGT events

    Any capital gain or capital loss that you have made that does not fit into any of the more specific categories listed in item 1 of the CGT schedule. For example, disposal of your forestry interests in a forestry managed investment scheme or hedging financial arrangements.

    Other real estate

    Any real estate including land and buildings that are situated outside of Australia, for example, a rental property situated in the United States.

    Other exemptions and rollovers

    Any exemption or rollover that you have applied that is not listed in one of the more specific codes under the question 'Have you applied an exemption or rollover?' of the individual tax return (supplementary section) or your entity's tax return.

    Other shares

    Any shares that are not listed on an Australian securities exchange, such as privately held shares or shares listed on a foreign securities exchange, but not also on an Australian securities exchange, for example, shares listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

    Other units

    Any units in a unit trust that are not listed on an Australian securities exchange, such as privately held units or units listed on a foreign securities exchange, but not also on an Australian securities exchange, for example, units listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

    Ownership interest

    You have an ownership interest if you own a dwelling or land. For other circumstances where you may have an ownership interest, see What is an ownership interest?

    Pre-CGT

    Acquired before 20 September 1985. Assets acquired before this date are generally exempt from CGT. An exception is if CGT event K6 applies.

    Prior year net capital losses

    See Unapplied net capital losses.

    Post-CGT

    Acquired on or after 20 September 1985.

    Real estate situated in Australia

    Any real property including land and buildings that are situated in Australia.

    Reduced cost base

    The reduced cost base is the amount you take into account when you are working out whether you have made a capital loss when a CGT event happens.

    The reduced cost base may need to have amounts deducted from it such as non-assessable payments.

    The reduced cost base does not include indexation or costs of owning the asset such as interest on monies borrowed to buy it.

    Replacement asset rollovers

    A replacement asset rollover may apply to defer the capital gain when you replace an asset in certain circumstances.

    For more information see Other replacement asset rollovers.

    Rollover

    A rollover allows a capital gain to be deferred or disregarded until a later CGT event happens.

    Same asset rollover

    A same asset rollover allows a capital gain that you make to be deferred when you transfer or dispose of assets in certain circumstances.

    For more information see Other same asset rollovers.

    Scrip for scrip rollover

    A scrip for scrip rollover can apply to CGT events that happened on or after 10 December 1999 in the case of a takeover or merger of a company or fund in which you have holdings. The company or fund would usually advise you if the rollover conditions have been satisfied.

    This rollover allows you to defer your CGT obligation until a later CGT event happens to your shares or units.

    You may only be eligible for partial rollover if you received shares (or units) plus cash for your original shares. In that case, if the information provided by the company or fund is not sufficient for you to calculate your capital gain, you may need to seek advice from us.

    Share buy-back

    If you disposed of shares back to a company under a buy-back arrangement, you may have made a capital gain or capital loss.

    Some of the buy-back price may have been treated as a dividend for tax purposes. The time you make the capital gain or capital loss will depend on the conditions of the particular buy-back offer.

    Share in companies listed on an Australian securities exchange

    These do not include shares in privately owned companies whereby those shares are not publicly traded. Shares in a privately owned company should be included in the Other Shares label.

    Small business CGT concessions

    There are four small business CGT concessions available if certain conditions are satisfied. They are, the:

    • small business 15-year exemption
    • small business 50% active asset reduction
    • small business retirement exemption
    • small business rollover.

    These concessions apply to CGT events that happened after 11.45am (by legal time in the ACT) on 21 September 1999. For information on these concessions, see Capital gains tax (CGT) concessions for small business – overview.

    Specifically entitled

    Under recently enacted legislation relating to trust, a beneficiary that is specifically entitled to the whole or part of a capital gain made by the trust will be assessable on the amount of the net (taxable) income of the trust that relates to that gain.

    Generally, a beneficiary will be taken to be specifically entitled to an amount of a capital gain if they have received or are likely to receive the benefit of that capital gain.

    Spouse

    Your 'spouse' includes another person (whether of the same sex or opposite sex) who:

    • you were in a relationship with that was registered under a prescribed state or territory law,
    • although not legally married to you, lived with you on a genuine domestic basis in a relationship as a couple.

    Takeovers and mergers

    If a company in which you held shares was taken over or merged and you received new shares in the takeover or merged company, you may be entitled to a scrip for scrip rollover.

    If the scrip for scrip conditions were not satisfied, your capital proceeds for your original shares will be the total of any cash and the market value of the new shares you received.

    Tax-advantaged entity

    A tax-advantaged entity is a tax-exempt entity, or the trustee of:

    • a complying superannuation fund
    • a complying approved deposit fund
    • a pooled superannuation fund.

    Tax-deferred amounts

    These amounts include indexation allowed to a trust on its capital gains and accounting differences in income.

    Tax-exempted amounts

    These amounts are generally made up of exempt income and non-assessable non-exempt income of the trust, amounts on which the trust has already paid tax or income you had to repay to the trust. Tax-exempted amounts do not affect your cost base or your reduced cost base.

    Tax-free amounts

    These amounts arise where certain tax concessions allowed to the trust enable it to pay greater distributions to its beneficiaries.

    Unapplied net capital losses from earlier years

    This is the amount of net capital losses from earlier years remaining after you have deducted any capital gains made between the years when the losses were made and the current year.

    You use unapplied net capital losses from earlier years to reduce capital gains in the current year (after those capital gains have been reduced by any capital losses in the current year).

    You can only use unapplied net capital losses from collectables from earlier years to reduce capital gains from collectables in the current and future years.

    Unit trust

    A unit trust is a trust or fund that is divided into units representing capital and income entitlements. Units may be traded or redeemed (including the switching and transferring of units). A managed fund is a type of unit trust.

    Units in unit trusts listed on an Australian securities exchange

    These do not include units in private equity trusts or family trusts, whereby the trust is created for the benefit of one or more ascertainable beneficiaries, and not for the promotion of the welfare of the general public or for the advancement of a cause. Units in a private trust should be included in the Other units label.

    Appendix 5 Abbreviations

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    ACT

    Australian Capital Territory

    CGT

    capital gains tax

    CPI

    consumer price index

    CYCG

    current year capital gains

    CYCL

    current year capital losses

    ESS

    employee share scheme

    FMIS

    forestry managed investment scheme

    GST

    goods and services tax

    GVSR

    general value shifting regime

    LIC

    listed investment company

    MDO

    medical defence organisation

    PYNCL

    prior year net capital losses

    SIC

    shortfall interest charge

    TFN

    tax file number

    TOFA

    taxation of financial arrangements

    UNCL

    unapplied net capital losses

    UCA

    uniform capital allowance

     

    Publications and rulings

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    To get any publication referred to in this guide:

    • go to:
    • ato.gov.au for publications and forms
    • law.ato.gov.auExternal Link for rulings, determinations and practice statements
    • phone 1300 720 092

    Publications

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

    Publications relevant to this guide include:

    Rulings and determinations

    Attention

    Warning:

    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 are available from the ATO's legal database at law.ato.gov.auExternal Link

    More information

    Attention

    Warning:

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

    End of attention

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      Last modified: 04 Jul 2013QC 28207