• Sole purpose test

    Your SMSF needs to meet the sole purpose test to be eligible for the tax concessions normally available to super funds. This means your fund needs to be maintained for the sole purpose of providing retirement benefits to your members, or to their dependants if a member dies before retirement.

    Contravening the sole purpose test is very serious. In addition to the fund losing its concessional tax treatment, trustees could face civil and criminal penalties.

    It’s likely your fund will not meet the sole purpose test if you or anyone else, directly or indirectly, obtains a financial benefit when making investment decisions and arrangements (other than increasing the return to your fund).

    When investing in collectables such as art or wine, you need to make sure that SMSF members don’t have use of, or access to, the assets of the SMSF.

    Your fund fails the sole purpose test if it provides a pre-retirement benefit to someone – for example, personal use of a fund asset.

     See also:

    • Self-managed superannuation funds ruling SMSFR 2008/2: sole purpose test
    Last modified: 03 Jul 2017QC 23323