Show download pdf controls
  • Latest news on tax law and policy

    Caretaker arrangements

    On 11 April 2019, the Australian Government assumed a caretaker role, with an election to be held on 18 May 2019. We publish information on our websites in accordance with the Guidance on Caretaker ConventionsExternal Link circulated by the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.

    All Bills before parliament at the time the election was called have lapsed. Some of the measures described here have been announced but not yet enacted. Whether those measures proceed is a matter for the incoming government to decide.

    This section provides details of proposed changes to tax and superannuation legislation and policy.

    On this page:

    Budget 2019–20

    The government handed down the 2019–20 Budget on 2 April 2019, with several proposed changes to tax and superannuation laws (see budget.gov.auExternal Link).

    Budget 2019–20 measures

    Measure name

    Proposed start date

    Developments

    Tax Integrity – extension and expansion of the ATO Tax Avoidance Taskforce on Large Corporates, Multinationals and High Wealth Individuals

    1 July 2019

     

    Tax Integrity – increasing engagement and on-time payment of tax and superannuation liabilities

    1 July 2019

     

    Black Economy – strengthening the Australian Business Number system

    1 July 2019

     

    Tax Integrity – clarifying the operation of the hybrid mismatch rules

    2 April 2019 (integrity rule)

    1 January 2019 (other elements)

     

    Tax Integrity – further consultation on amendments to Division 7A

    Deferred from 1 July 2019 to 1 July 2020

     

    Single Touch Payroll – Expansion

    1 July 2019

     

    Continued Funding for GovPass – Trusted Digital Identity

    1 July 2018

     

    Electronic Invoicing Adoption

    No formal start date

     

    Increasing Analytical Capabilities

    1 July 2018

     

    Reducing costs for the super industry by including superannuation release authorities in electronic SuperStream Rollover standard

    31 March 2021

     

    Superannuation – improving flexibility for older Australians

    1 July 2020

     

    Superannuation – reducing red tape for superannuation funds

    1 July 2020

     

    Superannuation – permanent tax relief for merging superannuation funds

    1 July 2020

     

    Protecting Your Super Package – putting members’ interests first

    1 October 2019

     

    Protecting Your Super Package – amendment

    1 July 2019

     

    Lower taxes for hard-working Australians: Building on the Personal Income Tax Plan

    1 July 2018 (Low and Middle Income Tax Offset)

    1 July 2022 (Low Income Tax Offset)

     

    Personal income tax – increasing the Medicare levy low-income thresholds

    1 July 2019

    Treasury Laws Amendment (Medicare Levy and Medicare Levy Surcharge) Act 2019 External Link

    Closing the Gap refresh – Indigenous Youth Education Package

    14 February 2019

     

    Helping Small Business Grow – supporting small businesses with tax disputes

    1 March 2019

     

    Increasing and expanding access to the instant asset write-off

    2 April 2019

    Treasury Laws Amendment (Increasing the Instant Asset Write-Off for Small Business Entities) Act 2019External Link

    For more information see What's new for small business

    North Queensland Flood Recovery Package – tax treatment of qualifying grants

    25 January to 28 February

    Treasury Laws Amendment (North Queensland Flood Recovery) Act 2019External Link

    Queensland storms – tax treatment of payments to primary producers

    October 2018

    Treasury Laws Amendment (North Queensland Flood Recovery) Act 2019External Link

    Luxury Car Tax – increased refunds for eligible primary producers and tourism operators

    1 July 2019

     

    Indirect Tax Concession Scheme – diplomatic, consular and international organisation concessions

    As specified by the Minister for Foreign Affairs

     

    International Tax – signing the Australia-Israel Tax Treaty

    After ratification by both countries

     

    International Tax – updating the list of information exchange countries

    1 January 2020

     

    Philanthropy – updates to the list of specifically listed deductible gift recipients

    1 July 2020

     

    Philanthropy – extending deductible gift recipient status to Men’s Sheds and Women’s Sheds

    1 July 2020

     

    MYEFO 2018–19

    The government handed down the 2018–19 Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook (MYEFO) on 17 December 2018, with several proposed changes to tax and superannuation laws. You can access the MYEFO papers here: budget.gov.auExternal Link).

    MYEFO 2018–19 Measures

    Measure name

    Proposed start date

    Developments

    GST-compliance program – four year extension (page 122)

    1 July 2019

     

    Tax compliance – extending the Serious Financial Crime Taskforce (page 132)

    1 July 2019

     

    Women's Economic Security Package (page 215)

    1 July 2020

     

    Victims of Crime – access to perpetrators' superannuation (page 134)

    12 months after Royal Assent

     

    Superannuation – superannuation guarantee amnesty (page 130)

    24 May 2018

    Senate Second reading moved 25/6/2018

    Treasury Laws Amendment (2018 Superannuation Measures No. 1) Bill 2018)External Link

    Tax Integrity – disclosure of business tax debts – amendments (page 132)

    Royal Assent

    Royal Assent 3/10/2018

    Treasury Laws Amendment (Tax Integrity and Other Measures) Bill 2018External Link

    Tax compliance – extending data matching for card transactions and taxable government payments (page 131)

    1 July 2017

     

    Small Business Package – lower taxes for small and medium businesses (page 128)

    25 October 2018

     

    Small Business Package – making it easier for business (page 234)

    1 March 2019

     

    VET FEE-HELP Debts – additional student protection (page 172)

    1 January 2019

    Royal Assent 10/12/2018

    Higher Education Support AmendmentExternal Link

    (VET FEE-HELP Student Protection) Act no.160, 2018

    Managed Investment Trusts – applying a 30% withholding rate on residential and agricultural property (page 124)

    1 July 2019

    Income Tax (Managed Investment Trust Withholding Tax) Amendment Act 2018External Link.

    Petroleum Resource Rent Tax – changing the PRRT settings to get a fair return (page 126)

    1 July 2019

    Treasury Laws Amendment (2019 Petroleum Resource Rent Tax Reforms No. 1) Act 2019External Link

    Superannuation – superannuation guarantee (SG) amnesty – stronger penalties (page 131)

    24 May 2019

    Senate Second reading moved 25/6/2018

    Treasury Laws Amendment (2018 Superannuation Measures No. 1) Bill 2018)External Link

    Superannuation – simplifying the work test exemption for recent retirees (page 130)

    1 July 2019

     

    Superannuation – miscellaneous amendments – technical and minor superannuation taxation fixes (page 125)

    Legislation dependent

     

    Superannuation – integrity of limited recourse borrowing arrangements (page 128)

    1 July 2018

    Treasury Laws Amendment (2017 Measures No. 2)External Link Act no. 55, year 2017

    GST and feminine hygiene products (page 122)

    1 January 2019

     

    Philanthropy – updates to the list of specifically listed deductible gift recipients (page 127)

    1 July 2018

     

    Indirect Tax Concession Scheme – diplomatic and consular concessions (page 123)

    17 October 2017

     

    Square Kilometre Array Radio Telescope Project – further investment to support critical research infrastructure (page 118)

    Legislation dependent

     

    Income tax exemption for the Global Infrastructure Hub (page 123)

    Royal Assent

    Royal Assent 5/4/2019

    Treasury Laws Amendment (2019 Measures No. 1) Act no 49, 2019External Link

    Genuine redundancy payments – aligning access to the tax-free component with the Age Pension age (page 121)

    Legislation dependent

     

    Changes to the Seasonal Worker Programme (page 119)

     

     

    Changes to the Working Holiday Maker visa program (page 116)

     

    House of Representatives, Third reading agreed to 17/11/2016 - SNT Bill agreed to subject to requests 24/11/2016 House did not make Senate requested amendments 24/11/2016

    Income Tax Rates Amendment (Working Holiday Maker Reform) Bill 2016External Link

    Income Tax – exemption for Kiribati Phoenix Islands Protected Area Conservation Trust (page 123)

    1 July 2015

     

    Retaining the Age Pension Qualifying Age at 67 Years (page 223)

     

     

    Assistance for Farmers and Farm Communities in Drought (page 150)

     

     

    International Tax – finalising the list of information exchange countries (page 124)

    1 January 2019

     

    Tax integrity – improving operation of the OECD hybrid mismatch arrangement rules (page 133)

    1 July 2020

     

    Modernising Business Registers – Gateway Review Process (page 231)

    1 November 2018

    House of Representatives second reading moved 13/2/2019

    Treasury Laws Amendment (Registries Modernisation and Other Measures) Bill 2019External Link

    Miscellaneous Amendments – ongoing care and maintenance of Treasury portfolio legislation (page 125)

    Legislation dependent

     

    Revised start date – 2017–18 Budget measure – Tax Integrity Package – Improving the small business capital gains tax concessions (page 127)

    8 February 2018

    Senate 6/12/18 - Third reading agreed to- with amendments.

    Treasury Laws Amendment (Enhancing Whistleblower Protections) Bill 2018External Link

    Revised start date – 2017–18 MYEFO measure – Deductible gift recipient reform – strengthening governance and integrity and reducing complexity (page 127)

    1 July 2020

     

    Revised start date – 2018–19 Budget measure – Tax integrity – removing the capital gains tax discount at the trust level for managed investment trusts (MITs) and attribution MITs (page 127)

    1 July 2020

    Royal Assent 12/3/2019

    Treasury Laws Amendment (2018 Measures No. 5) Act no. 15, 2019External Link

    Revised start date – 2018–19 Budget measure – Black Economy – introduction of an economy-wide cash payment limit (page 128)

    1 July 2020

     

    National Innovation and Science Agenda – intangible asset and depreciation – not proceeding (page 126)

     

    Royal Assent 1/03/2019

    Treasury Laws Amendment (2017 Enterprise Incentives No. 1) Act no. 7 , 2019External Link

    Company Tax – not proceeding with tax reductions for large companies (page 121)

     

     

    Enterprise tax plan – reducing the corporate tax rate

    The Treasury Laws Amendment (Enterprise Tax Plan Base Rate Entities) Act 2018 received Royal Assent on 31 August 2018.

    This Act removes the ‘carrying on a business’ test from the 2017–18 income year onwards and introduces a passive income test to work out which companies are subject to the lower corporate tax rate.

    See also:

    Fodder storage assets

    The Treasury Laws Amendment (Supporting Australian Farmers) Act 2018External Link received Royal Assent on 3 October 2018. This Act enables primary producers to immediately deduct (rather than depreciate over three years) the cost of fodder storage assets, such as silos and hay sheds used to store grain and other animal feed.

    The measure applies to fodder storage assets used or installed ready for use on or after 19 August 2018.

    Budget 2018–19

    The Government handed down the 2018–19 Budget on 8 May 2018, with several proposed changes to tax and superannuation laws. You can access the Budget papers here: budget.gov.auExternal Link

    Revenue Measures

    Measure name

    Proposed start date

    Developments

    Backing Small Business Investment – further extending the immediate deductibility threshold
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 20)

    1 July 2018

    The Treasury Laws Amendment (Accelerated Depreciation for Small Business Entities) Act 2018External Link was given Royal Assent on 21 September 2018.

    Black EconomyExternal Link Package – new and enhanced ATO enforcement against the Black Economy
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 23)

    2018–19

     

    Black EconomyExternal Link Package – introduction of an economy–wide cash payment limit
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 23)

    1 July 2019

     

    Black EconomyExternal Link Package – further expansion of taxable payments reporting
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 22)

    1 July 2019

    Further information on this measure is available here.

    Black EconomyExternal Link Package – removing tax deductibility of non-compliant payments
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 24)

    1 July 2019

    The Treasury Laws Amendment (Black Economy Taskforce Measures No. 2) Act 2018External Link was given Royal Assent on 29 November 2018

    Black EconomyExternal Link Package – combating illicit tobacco
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 12)

    1 July 2019

    Treasury Laws Amendment (Black Economy Taskforce Measures No. 2) Act no 141, 2018External Link

    Royal Assent 29/11/2018

    Reforms to combat illegal Phoenixing
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 37)

    Royal Assent

    Public consultationExternal Link on the draft legislation for this measure is now open, closing on 27 September 2018.

    Levelling the playing field for online hotel bookings
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 29)

    1 July 2019

    Public consultationExternal Link on the draft legislation for this measure closed on 9 August 2018.

    Removing luxury car tax on re-imported cars following refurbishment overseas
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 38)

    1 January 2019

    House of Representatives 11/4/2019External Link

    Treasury Laws Amendment (Making Sure Multinationals Pay Their Fair Share of Tax in Australia and Other Measures) Bill 2018

    Alcohol Taxation – extending support for craft brewers and distillers
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 19)

    1 July 2019

    Royal Assent 5/4/2019

    Treasury Laws AmendmentExternal Link

    (2019 Measures No. 1) Act no. 40, 2019

    Personal income tax plan:

    • Targeted tax relief to low and middle income earners
    • Protecting middle income Australians from bracket creep
    • Ensuring Australians pay less for tax by making the system simpler

    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 33)

     

    1 July 2018

     

    1 July 2018

     

    1 July 2024

    The Treasury Laws Amendment (Personal Income Tax Plan) Act 2018External Link was given the Royal Assent on 21 June 2018.

    Personal Income Tax – ensuring individuals meet their tax obligations
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 31)

    1 July 2018

     

    Superannuation – better integrity over deductions for personal contributions
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 39)

    1 July 2018

     

    Tax Integrity – taxation of income for an individual's fame or image
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 45)

    1 July 2019

     

    Tax Integrity – deny deductions for vacant land
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 42)

    1 July 2019

     

    Personal Income Tax – increasing the Medicare Levy low-income threshold
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 32)

    2017–18 income year

    The Treasury Laws Amendment (Medicare Levy and Medicare Levy Surcharge) Bill 2018External Link was introduced to Parliament on 24 May 2018.

    A firm stance on tax and superannuation debts
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 19)

    1 July 2018

     

    Protecting Your Super Package – capping passive fees, banning exit fees and reuniting small and inactive superannuation accounts
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 35)

    1 July 2019

     

    Superannuation – increasing the maximum number of allowable members in self-managed superannuation funds and small APRA funds from four to six
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 40)

    1 July 2019

     

    Superannuation – three-yearly audit cycle for some self-managed superannuation funds
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 41)

    1 July 2019

     

    Superannuation – preventing inadvertent concessional cap breaches by certain employees
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 40)

    1 July 2018

    Refer to related new legislation webpage.

    Treasury Laws Amendment (2018 Superannuation Measures No. 1) Bill 2018External Link was introduced to Parliament 24 May 2018.

    Full Cost Recovery of Superannuation Activities
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 27)

    2018–19

     

    More Choices for a Longer Life – work test exemption for recent retirees
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 30)

    1 July 2019

     

    Better targeting the research and development tax incentive
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 21)

    1 July 2018

    Refer to related new legislation webpage

    Tax Integrity – removing the capital gains discount at the trust level for Managed Investment Trusts and Attribution MITs
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 44)

    1 July 2019

    Royal Assent 12/3/2019External Link

    Treasury Laws Amendment (2018 Measures No. 5) Act no. 15, 2019

    Stapled structures – tightening concessions for foreign investors
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 38)

    1 July 2018 (thin capitalisation elements); 1 July 2019 (remainder of the package)

    Refer to related new legislation webpage

    Company Tax – significant global entity definition amendment
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 26)

    1 July 2018

    House of Representatives second reading 20/9/2018External Link

    Treasury Laws Amendment (Making Sure Multinationals Pay Their Fair Share of Tax in Australia & Other Measures) Bill 2018

    Company Tax – income tax consolidation
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 25)

    Date of introduction

    Royal Assent 28/3/2018External Link

    Treasury Laws Amendment (Income Tax Consolidation Integrity) Act no. 14, 2018

    Tax Integrity – thin capitalisation – valuation of assets and treatment of consolidated entities
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 46)

    1 July 2019

    Valuations that were made prior to 7.30pm (AEST) on 8 May 2018 may be relied on until the beginning of an entity’s first income year commencing on or after 1 July 2019.

    International Tax – updating the list of information exchange countries
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 28)

    1 January 2019

     

    Company Tax – improving the integrity of the tax treatment of concessional loans between tax exempt entities
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 25)

    8 May 2018

     

    Tax Integrity – extending anti-avoidance rules for circular trust distributions
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 43)

    1 July 2019

    Public consultationExternal Link on the draft legislation for this measure is now open, closing on 31 October 2018.

    Tax Integrity – enhancing the integrity of concessions in relation to partnerships
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 43)

    7:30pm (AEST) 8 May 2018

    Public consultationExternal Link on the draft legislation for this measure is now open, closing on 31 October 2018.

    Tax Integrity – clarifying the operation of the Division 7A integrity rule
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 41)

    1 July 2019

     

    Tax Integrity – improving the taxation of testamentary trusts
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 44)

    1 July 2019

     

    Company Tax – taxation of financial arrangements – regulation reform
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 26)

    Royal Assent

     

    Pathway to Permanent Residency for Retirement Visa Holders – establishment
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 14)

    2018–19

     

    Income Tax – exemption for the International Cricket Council for the ICC World Twenty20 in 2020
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 27)

    1 July 2018

    The Treasury Laws Amendment (Tax Integrity and Other Measures No. 2) Bill 2018External Link was introduced to Parliament 24 May 2018.

    Indirect Tax Concession Scheme – diplomatic and consular concessions
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 28)

    As specified by the Minister for Foreign Affairs

     

    Miscellaneous Amendments – ongoing care and maintenance of Treasury portfolio legislation
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 30)

    Various

     

    Personal Income Tax – income tax exemption for certain Veteran Payments
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 31)

    1 May 2018

     

    Philanthropy – updates to the list of specifically listed deductible gift recipients
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 34)

    Various

    The Treasury Laws Amendment (Tax Integrity and Other Measures No. 2) Bill 2018External Link was introduced to Parliament 24 May 2018.

    Personal Income Tax – retaining the Medicare Levy rate at 2%
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 32)

    1 July 2019

     

    Modernising payroll and superannuation fund reporting
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 185)

    1 July 2019

     

    Black EconomyExternal Link Taskforce – Standing Taskforce
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 181)

    1 July 2018

     

    Black EconomyExternal Link Taskforce – Implementation Team
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 180)

    1 July 2018

     

    Black EconomyExternal Link Taskforce – increasing the integrity of the Commonwealth Procurement Process
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 181)

    1 July 2019

    Refer to related new measure webpage

    Black EconomyExternal Link Taskforce – consulting on a new regulatory framework for Australian Business Numbers
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 180)

    2018–19

     

    Delivering Australia's Digital Future – GovPass Program – accelerated implementation
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 167)

    2018–19

     

    Delivering Australia’s Digital Future – modernising business registers
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 182)

    2018–19

     

    Delivering Australia's Digital Future – data sharing and release arrangements
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 166)

    2018–19

     

    More Choices for a Longer life – finances for a longer life
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 175)

    1 July 2019

     

    Combined Lifetime Limit for Tuition Fee Assistance – amendment
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 86)

    1 January 2020

     

    Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission – funding for litigation expenses
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 179)

    2018–19

    No legislation required

    Tax Practitioners Board – funding
    (Budget Paper No. 2 – page 189)

    2018–19

    No legislation required

    Last modified: 18 Apr 2019QC 43473