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Allocating depreciating assets to a low-value pool

Last updated 7 April 2020

A low-value pool is created when you first choose to allocate a low-cost or low-value asset to the pool.

When you allocate an asset to the pool, you must make a reasonable estimate of the percentage of your use of the asset that will be for a taxable purpose over its effective life (for a low-cost asset) or the effective life remaining at the start of the income year for which it was allocated to the pool (for a low-value asset). This percentage is known as the asset's taxable use percentage.

It is this taxable use percentage of the cost or opening adjustable value that is written off through the low-value pool.

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Example: Working out the taxable use percentage

Kate allocates a low-cost asset to a low-value pool. The asset has an effective life of three years. Kate intends to use the asset 90% for taxable purposes in the first year, 80% in the second year and 70% in the third year. The taxable use percentage would be the average of these estimates - that is, 80%.

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Once you have allocated an asset to the pool, you cannot vary your estimate of the taxable use percentage even if the actual use of the asset turns out to be different from your estimate.

Once you choose to create a low-value pool and a low-cost asset is allocated to the pool, you must pool all other low-cost assets you start to hold in that income year and in later income years. However, this rule does not apply to low-value assets. You can decide whether to allocate low-value assets to the pool on an asset-by-asset basis.

Once you have allocated an asset to the pool, it remains in the pool.