Sunset clauses and off-the-plan contracts – clouds on the horizon for developers

Sunset clauses and off-the-plan contracts – clouds on the horizon for developers

The Victorian Government has introduced the Sale of Land Amendment Bill 2019 (Bill) to Parliament, which proposes to amend the Sale of Land Act 1962 (Vic) (Act). The Bill, if passed, will affect vendors under existing and future off-the-plan contracts.

MD Commercial: transfers to “bare” trustees failed to qualify for an exemption from Victorian stamp duty

MD Commercial: transfers to “bare” trustees failed to qualify for an exemption from Victorian stamp duty

The Victorian Supreme Court in the decision of MD Commercial Pty Ltd & AJ Commercial Pty Ltd v Commissioner of State Revenue [2018] VSC 560 confirmed that certain transfers of land to trustees were not exempt from duty under section 35 of the Duties Act 2000.

Living and Leisure: Victorian leases and the State tax implications

Living and Leisure: Victorian leases and the State tax implications

The Victorian Court of Appeal in its recent decision of Living and Leisure Australia Pty Ltd vs Commissioner of State Revenue (Living and Leisure) dismissed the appeal by the taxpayers and upheld the Victorian Supreme Court’s conclusion that the contended leases in respect of Crown lands within the alpine resorts granted exclusive possession and were leases.

Greig v Commissioner of Taxation: revenue vs capital and lessons for investors

Greig v Commissioner of Taxation: revenue vs capital and lessons for investors

Greig v Commissioner of Taxation [2018] FCA 1084 (Greig) reiterates the uncertainty in respect of the revenue and capital dichotomy and draws on well-known case law principles.

Don’t you forget about me: ATO also considering property developers and their GST obligations?

Don’t you forget about me: ATO also considering property developers and their GST obligations?

A recent ATO post on its social media channels may signal the Commissioner of Taxation’s focus on the GST obligations of taxpayers involved in the development of property for sale at a profit and whether they are required to register for GST. 

ATO guidance on Capital/Revenue in property developments turns on subtle facts

ATO guidance on Capital/Revenue in property developments turns on subtle facts

On 9 July 2018, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) recently released the Draft Property and Construction Website Guidance (the Guidelines) providing guidance in relation to the ATO position on property development and whether relevant property is held by the taxpayer on capital or revenue account.

GST withholding: finalised ATO guidance does not even out the bumps

GST withholding: finalised ATO guidance does not even out the bumps

GST withholding on taxable supplies of certain new residential premises or potential residential land is now in effect and applies to contracts entered into on or after 1 July 2018 (or contracts before that date where the first consideration other than the deposit is paid on or after 1 July 2020).

Sladen Snippet - New (financial) year, new property requirements

Sladen Snippet - New (financial) year, new property requirements

As has been standard fare for the property industry over the last few years, a new financial year will bring in a number of changes to the development and sales process. It is important that developers are aware of these changes, and begin taking steps to comply with the new requirements in order to avoid any delays or other adverse implications once the amendments take effect.

Sladen Snippet - Recent case: GST is a four-letter word

Sladen Snippet - Recent case: GST is a four-letter word

The Victorian Court of Appeal recently successfully allowed an appeal from the Supreme Court concerning the GST treatment of a property sale. The decision, in fact both decisions, illustrate the importance of ensuring that the contract of sale correctly sets out whether the price includes or excludes GST and the required due diligence including legal advice needed before signing such contracts.

Sladen Snippet - e-Contracts that work: a game changer for the property development industry

Sladen Snippet - e-Contracts that work: a game changer for the property development industry

Partnering with our client Resi Ventures, Sladen Legal has rolled out e-Contracts for use in sales at the Accolade and Monument estates. The use of e-Contracts aligns with Resi Ventures’ goals of implementing fresh ideas and best practices in creating communities and the way it deals with its customers.

Sladen Snippet - Additional stamp duty trigger for option agreements

Sladen Snippet - Additional stamp duty trigger for option agreements

As part of the Victorian State Budget, a number of stamp duty changes have been proposed, many of which have received significant media attention (including the abolition of the off the plan duty concession for investors, the abolition of stamp duty for some first home buyers, and the removal of the blanket duty exemption for transfers between spouses).

Sladen Snippet - New GST remission requirements for purchasers of newly constructed residential premises or land in new subdivisions

Sladen Snippet - New GST remission requirements for purchasers of newly constructed residential premises or land in new subdivisions

It was announced as part of the 2017 Federal Budget that from 1 July 2018, purchasers of “newly constructed residential premises” or “new land subdivisions” will be required to remit GST directly to the Australian Taxation Office as part of settlement. Details have not yet been provided on how this measure will be implemented or operate.

Sladen Snippet – Last chance to transfer property between spouses duty free

Sladen Snippet – Last chance to transfer property between spouses duty free

The Victorian government has announced in its 2017 budget that it plans to abolish, from 1 July 2017, the spouse to spouse duty exemption, unless it is a transfer of a principal place of residence or a transfer as a result of a relationship breakdown.

Sladen Snippet - Commissioner is under no duty to issue amended land tax assessments

Sladen Snippet - Commissioner is under no duty to issue amended land tax assessments

The High Court of Australia has recently allowed an appeal against a decision of the Victoria Court of Appeal and held that the Commissioner was not under a duty to issue amended assessments and refund an excess amount of land tax that has erroneously been paid by a taxpayer.

Partner is denied access to partnership’s carried forward tax losses

Partner is denied access to partnership’s carried forward tax losses

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) has recently held that tax losses were not available to a partner in a property development partnership.

Sladen Snippet - Variation to foreign resident CGT withholding payments

Sladen Snippet - Variation to foreign resident CGT withholding payments

PAYG withholding variation for foreign resident capital gains withholding payments – deceased estate and legal personal representatives

Modest and infrequent maintenance activities of a property whose “main use” is to derive rent will not entitle a taxpayer to access the small business CGT concessions.

Modest and infrequent maintenance activities of a property whose “main use” is to derive rent will not entitle a taxpayer to access the small business CGT concessions.

In its recent decision in The Executors of the Estate of the late Peter Fowler and Commissioner of Taxation, the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) held that Mr Fowler was not entitled to apply the small business capital gains tax (CGT) concessions in Division 152 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997, on the sale of a block of 10 residential units (Manly Property) as he was not carrying on a business and the Manly Property did not qualify as an “active asset”.