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Welcome to our October issue of Business e-Bulletin.

In this issue ...

ATO small business benchmarking

With a relentless focus on business compliance, the ATO has recently updated its benchmark data and doubled its efforts in matching Activity Statements and Income Tax Returns.

Small business benchmarks are used to compare your performance against businesses in your industry, while providing the ATO with guidance on what figures they could normally expect a business in a particular industry to report. 

The danger in this approach is that there are many reasons why a business may not match the industry benchmark and the onus falls back on the taxpayer to prove the integrity of the results lodged. If your record keeping systems have any flaws whatsoever, the ATO will have a case to disregard your claims and apply the benchmarks.

Even if you have perfect records, understanding your fit to the ATO benchmark may be worthwhile – forewarned is forearmed.

We will be watching these new benchmarks closely and will be addressing any significant anomalies with our clients where we find them. 


If you have any concerns about the ATO compliance activities or your record keeping systems, please contact your Phillipsons adviser.

Phone our office 03 5144 4566 or email


Changes to Super legislation on hold

The government has abandoned plans for substantial changes to superannuation in the mid-year federal budget review in the wake of self-managed superannuation funds (SMSFs), calling upon it to stop fiddling with the superannuation system.

The SMSF Professionals' Association of Australia (SPAA) has made a formal submission to the Federal Treasury regarding the proposal to exclude self managed super funds from the proposed legislation to allow portability of retirement savings between Australia and New Zealand, opposing the exclusion of SMSFs, arguing that it is both discriminatory and counter-productive.

SPAA CEO Andrea Slattery says that the restriction on where New Zealand sourced retirement savings can be directed in Australia is unneeded and unwarranted ...

For more on this from the SPAA CEO, click here.


Ian Mein is Director of Phillipsons Financial Planning, with more than twenty years' experience in funds management and financial planning. He can help you with any questions you might have on your own SMSF.

Call 03 5144 5207 and speak to Ian today.


Acceptable alternative employment - or is it?

A word from David Bates, our specialist employee relations partner

Employers trying to avoid redundancy payouts to an employee by offering 'acceptable alternative employment', should be aware that a new role offering a similar or higher salary is more likely to be found 'acceptable' by a court than one that pays significantly less.

Click here to read David's full report at his blog.


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Gippsland Sale Show - November 2012

Phillipsons is a proud sponsor of the Dairy Cattle class at the upcoming Gippsland Sale Show.

The 149th show of the Sale & District Agricultural Society will be held from 2-4 November in Sale, Victoria. Attractions this year include: Showjumping; Sheepdog Trials; the 10th Anniversary Carrot Cake Competition; and Pet Parade, including an award for the pet that most looks like its owner.

It promises to be an event-packed few days,and we encourage as many people as possible to support this popular event, showcasing our region's best.


You can find out all about the show, including main attractions and full schedule of events by visiting the website. Just go to this address:


Don't forget ...

  • September quarterly BAS are due on 29 October.

Also the following should all have been lodged by now:

  • Workcover Annual Remuneration Reconciliations
  • PAYG Withholding Annual Summaries
  • July and August monthly activity statements.

For a full list of all key dates for October, please visit:

The Festive Season is just around the corner, so if you still have New Year resolutions on your To Do list, there isn't much time to get them started. If getting your 2012 income tax lodged is also still on your To Do list, give us a call to get that one underway.

Kurt Best
General Manager