Iain Blakeley

Barrister - Tax Expert - Business Adviser - Director, Professional, Practical, Fast, Affordable

Level of business

It wouldn’t happen in New Zealand – or would it?

An Australian court says a taxpayer has not commenced a subdivision activity until they have the funds needed to purchase the land. The costs spent beforehand on planning permits and market valuations were preliminary or preparatory to starting any business. That's...

12 GST thoughts of Christmas

12 GST thoughts of Christmas: 1. There's no GSTĀ on gifts (so Santa is probably not GST registered). 2. GSTĀ registered businesses can claim back the GST on gifts they buy for staff, suppliers and customers. 3. If you buy someone a gift voucher for Christmas it's quite...

Bodies corporate and GST

Brian Fallow's opinion piece in today's Herald on residential bodies corporate and GST is timely. See here: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=11231055 This issue baffles me. Why is it so complicated and why is it taking so long...

12 GST thoughts of Christmas

12 GST thoughts of Christmas: 1. There's no GST on gifts (so Santa is probably not GST registered). 2. GST registered businesses can claim back the GST on gifts they buy for staff, suppliers and customers. 3. If you buy someone a gift voucher for Christmas it's quite...

GST refund claims: keep it real.

You can't claim GST back on an expense unless you actually receive whatever it is you are paying for. That's the message from the Australian Federal Court in a decision released on 1 November [Professional Admin Service Centres Pty Ltd v FC of T]. In that case the...

Buying and selling houses

If you're buying and selling houses on a regular basis be careful of GST. The Tax Review Authority recently backdated GST registration for a couple's family trust to 1999 because they traded 11 residential properties in 12 years. The case is reported at: Case 5/2013...

Time to make GST compliance easier?

The Australian Labor Party has announced that from 1 July 2014 businesses with turnover of less than $20m will be able to lodge their GST activity statements annually http://www.alp.org.au/cutting_red_tape_reducing_the_burden_of_the_gst. That's ten times the current...

Starting a new business?

If you're thinking about starting a new business be careful how much you spend on "preparatory and exploratory" work. An Australian tax court has just concluded that a couple could not claim back GST on "preparatory and exploratory" expenditure because their business...

GST and non-profit bodies

Inland Revenue released their updated "Public rulings work programme" on 5 October. This is where they announce key policy areas they are working on at the moment. It means we can expect some sort of discussion document, legislative announcement or ruling on certain...

Who’s making submissions?

I'm interested in hearing from anyone who is considering making a submission in response to the latest discussion document from Inland Revenue on GST. They are looking for feedback on the suggestion of loosening the rules for overseas businesses wanting to recover GST...

Penny and Hooper decision carries GST lessons.

The Supreme Court ruled yesterday that orthopaedic surgeons Ian Penny and Gary Hooper avoided tax when they diverted income from their practices to lower tax rate entities such as companies and trusts. A significant issue was the below market salaries they paid...

Warning for small operators

A recent Australian court case serves as a warning for very small businesses. The NZ rules are similar. The taxpayer bought a former fauna park intending to convert it to educational and accommodation use. However the taxpayer didn't get around to kick starting their...