The “similar business test” to make it easier for companies (and listed trusts) to deduct losses became law in March 2019.
Discretionary trusts are prevalent in the small to medium enterprise (SME) market due to their income tax effectiveness, distribution flexibility, and asset protection features. However, this may be about to change. The Australian Labor Party (ALP) has proposed a number of amendments to existing tax laws should they win the election on 18 May 2019.
In Watson as trustee for the Murrindindi Bushfire Class Active Settlement Fund v Commissioner of Taxation  FCA 228 (Watson), the Federal Court ruled that an investment trust established to hold funds received as compensation for victims of the black Saturday bush fires could not deduct administrative expenses associated with the trust’s operation.
We have previously written on the ATO releasing guidance on demergers and back-to-back CGT roll-overs. The ATO recently released Draft Taxation Determination TD 2019/D1 concerning demergers although the ATO’s draft views may be illustrative of the Commissioner’s views in the context of back-to-back CGT rollovers.