Anyone can use a discretionary trust but the beneficiaries of trusts are usually all part of the one family or extended family.
Overwhelmingly, trusts are used to minimise tax, avoid paying creditors and to avoid the fair division of property after a relationship breakdown.
Australian government agencies are employing the services of spyware company Cellebrite.
The Australian government is using spyware. Is that legal?
Adam Cranston, is facing charges in relation to his alleged involvement in the Plutus Payroll tax fraud case. Cases like this highlight how the corporate veil works.
The corporate veil, traditionally friend of directors and foe of outsiders, may have turned double agent.
If Australia adopted a similar approach to the Hong Kong to eliminate debt loading abuse, United States oil and gas giant Chevron would have been denied A$6.275 billion in interest deductions.
New modelling shows governments need to ensure that corporations benefiting from the use of Australia's resources, are contributing the same as they do in other jurisdictions.
ACTU Secretary Sally McManus addressing the National Press Club in Canberra.
AAP Image/Mick Tsikas
In a speech to the National Press Club in Canberra, ACTU Secretary Sally McManus said 679 of Australia's biggest corporations pay "not one cent of tax". Is that right?
The ATO crash didn’t involve a fire, but it almost looked that bad for a while.
The ATO system crash was unusual, but it was handled as well as could be expected.
What George Brandis did or did not tell Justin Gleeson is at the heart of a major political row embroiling him and the federal and WA governments.
Attorney-General George Brandis has declined to say whether he told the then-solicitor-general, Justin Gleeson, not to run a particular argument in a High Court case.
The Australian Tax Office has found that nearly 14% of Australian farmland is held by foreign investors.
AAP Image/Dan Peled
Katter's Australian Party federal MP Bob Katter said 30% of the Northern Territory's farmland and 22% of Tasmania's farmland is foreign-owned. Is that true?
ASIC charges businesses and individuals around A$50 million each year for company searches.
Keeping public information about companies locked up behind paywalls and maintained by private interests is not in the public interest.
In the EU, Apple has made a powerful enemy.
Australian companies could fall foul of the same state aid rules being applied to Apple to crack down on tax avoidance.
Chevron’s Gorgon project is one of a few in Australia subject to the petroleum resource rent tax.
Australia is missing out on revenue from some gas projects because the petroleum resource rent tax doesn't apply.
The tax paid by some household names has been revealed.
The ATO's data dump of how much tax was paid by largest private companies raising more questions than it answers.
Treasurer Scott Morrison says the changes to foreign investment scrutiny will give the ATO greater powers to crack down on tax avoidance.
International investors will have to comply with new rules designed to stop tax avoidance by multinational companies.
A load worth bearing?
A recent report from think tank Per Capita highlighted increasing concern over inequality in Australia’s taxation system, particularly whether high income earners are paying their fair share of tax. Despite…
From July, the ATO will be able to levy new fines on self-managed superannuation fund trustees.
Self-Managed Superannuation Funds (SMSFs) are the fastest growing sector of the superannuation industry, spiking by 33% between 2008 and 2012, putting them in the sights of both the super industry and…
Tax evasion campaigns are not new, but with them often comes an amnesty designed to maximise government revenue.
HM Revenue & Customs/Flickr
The Australian Taxation Office continues its campaign to track down the offshore bank accounts of wealthy Australians, amid a global effort to improve tax transparency. One option the ATO has in its kit…
Joe Hockey has “deep reservations” about the current role of the tax office.
Shadow Treasurer Joe Hockey has launched a fierce attack on the Australian Taxation Office, accusing it of having had “an…
Chris Jordan will start in his role as Australia’s Federal Tax Commissioner in January 2013.
In January 2013, Mr Chris Jordan AO starts as Federal Commissioner of Taxation in charge of the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). He follows Mr Michael D’Ascenzo AO, who was not reappointed after his seven-year…
The Coalition has ruled out increasing GST, despite calls from former Prime Minister John Howard for GST to apply to food. But could a policy change be in the wings?
There is almost unanimous agreement among mainstream economists, tax experts, Treasury, business and even politicians (albeit very quietly) that the Goods and Services Tax will have to be increased and…
Provocative artworks, such as Wim Delvoye’s Cloaca, have drawn a steady stream of tourists to multi-billionaire David Walsh’s Museum of Old and New Art in Hobart.
It was March last year when I sat down in the chaotic New York office of a leading international tax attorney to conduct an interview for a book I was writing on the campaign against tax havens. But rather…