We provide advice and guidance in a range of ways to help you understand how the law applies to your circumstances.
Seeking out confirmation of our interpretative position not only helps you to self-assess your obligations and entitlements with more certainty, but it can also form part of your tax control framework by identifying and managing tax risks.
Here’s an outline of some of the advice and guidance services we offer and what they provide.
- Binding advice – rulings
Advice is our opinion on the application of the law we administer. Our opinion is binding if it’s provided as a ruling. When you act in accordance with a ruling, you’re protected from adverse consequences, even if our opinion is incorrect. You may consider making an application for a:
- private ruling if you want certainty about how the law applies to your specific circumstances
- class ruling to provide certainty to participants in a scheme covered by the class ruling, avoiding the need for individual participants to seek separate private rulings.
- Early engagement
If you’re considering a complex transaction or applying for a private ruling, you can seek early engagement before lodging a formal ruling application. Advice received through the early engagement process doesn’t provide the same level of protection as a private ruling. The early engagement approach enables you to engage with us to:
- discuss an arrangement
- identify key issues and concerns
- identify the most appropriate form of further advice required.
- New Investment Engagement Service (NIES)
This service allows Australian and foreign businesses, who are seeking to make a significant new investment in Australia, to engage with us before undertaking significant commercial transactions and investments of $250 million or more. The NIES is also available to all foreign businesses that come through the Global Business and Talent Attraction Taskforce.The NIES can help you access:
- objective information to understand potential tax risks arising from proposed investment structures
- a tailored report highlighting concerns and steps to take to mitigate those concerns
- assistance navigating and streamlining the Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) process
- assistance coordinating any request for ATO administratively binding advice or tax outcomes.
- Public advice and guidance
In addition to dealing with our clients on a one-to-one basis, we also review data on the advice requested by taxpayers to identify issues where public advice and guidance might reduce or streamline one-to-one engagement with us. To find out more you can:
- search for public advice and guidance on our legal database ato.gov.au/law and ato.gov.au. While you’re there you can subscribe to ‘what’s new’ alerts and sign-up for our email newsletters to receive regular updates from us
- review matters currently on our Advice under development program
- provide your feedback on matters currently Open for consultation.
Just a reminder, you still have time to submit your feedback on the future needs for advice and guidance relating to publicly listed and multinational businesses undertaking certain capital management activities. Comments are due by 11 August.
You can read more about our advice and guidance program in our most recent Public Groups and International Advice and Guidance Program report, which includes insights and key observations for the 2019-20 to 2021-22 financial years.Our advice and guidance services can give you more certainty and help you identify and manage tax risks.