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Appendix 2: Responsibilities of trustees

Last updated 12 February 2019

The following summary represents only a small number of the special responsibilities trustees have in the preparation of the Fund income tax return 2018.

  • The fund must have a governing trust deed or a constituent document.
  • The fund must ensure that all assets are in the name of the trustee of the fund.
  • The superannuation fund must elect to become a regulated fund under the SISA and be a complying fund in order to receive tax concessions. A notice of compliance is not required to be given to a fund each and every year of income. The trustee must retain a notice of compliance when issued for a previous income year. A notice of compliance given in relation to a year of income will be effective for that year and all subsequent years until such time, if any, as a notice of non-compliance is given to the fund.
  • If the fund operates under a substituted accounting period (SAP), the fund must maintain records indicating that the Commissioner has approved the SAP.
  • If a CGT event has happened to a CGT asset that the fund acquired before 1 July 1988, the fund must keep records of the market value or the original cost used for the cost base at 30 June 1988.
  • The fund must keep separate records of private company dividends, certain trust distributions or other non-arm’s length income.
  • The fund must keep records of all foreign source income and calculation of the foreign income tax offset.
  • In relation to contributions, the fund must keep records of:  
    • contributions received from employers and employees or depositors
    • rollover notifications to verify untaxed elements where rollovers are received.
  • The fund must keep records of how contributions excluded from income are determined. If pre 1 July 1988 funding credits are claimed, the fund must obtain a notice under section 342 of the SISA or keep evidence that the notice has been sought.
  • The fund must keep records of notices received excluding member or depositor contributions. If the contributions tax liability is transferred, the fund must obtain evidence in writing of an agreement signed by the transferor and the transferee.
  • In relation to deductions, the fund must keep records of expenditure and to what income it relates. If a deduction is claimed at G Death benefit increase item 11, the fund must keep records of how the claim was calculated and obtain the relevant actuarial certificates. It must also keep evidence that the benefit of the deduction is passed on to the dependant.
  • If premiums for death and disability cover are claimed, where relevant, the fund must keep a copy of the insurance policy or actuarial certificate.
  • If a future service element deduction is claimed, the fund must keep evidence of the calculation and full details of the relevant superannuation lump sum benefit.

In addition to the above documentation used in the preparation of this tax return, trustees also have the responsibility under the SISA for maintaining documentation after lodging the tax return.

Trustees must keep the following records for a minimum of five years:

  • accurate and accessible accounting records that explain the transactions and financial position of the fund
  • an annual operating statement and an annual statement of the fund’s financial position
  • copies of all tax returns lodged.

Trustees must keep the following records for a minimum of 10 years:

  • minutes of trustee meetings and decisions (where matters affecting the fund were discussed)
  • records of all changes of trustees, including all changes of directors of any corporate trustee
  • an individual’s written consent to be appointed as a trustee of the fund, or as a director of the corporate trustee
  • copies of all reports given to members.