Our advisers and experts love to answer questions on anything to do with superannuation, SMSF compliance, tax, markets and investment strategy.

Latest Q&A With Our Experts

Tony Kaye Answered by Tony Kaye 1wk ago

Buffett's message to SMSF trustees

Tony, can you clarify the following statement in this article please as I found it ambiguous, "That’s where income investors such as retirees, wanting consistent, long-term returns should be focusing." Do you mean they should be looking at things such as three-year bank term deposits, or equities-based financial products? Thanks.

Max Newnham Answered by Max Newnham 2wks ago

Commonwealth seniors health care card

Max Newnham advised that "To be eligible for the commonwealth seniors health care card you can have over $2.6 million in financial assets and still be eligible." My understanding is that as a home owning couple, you cannot have more than about $800,000 in asset. Can you please confirm and clarify, thank you.

Tony Kaye Answered by Tony Kaye 2wks ago

To be classified as sophisticated investor

To be classified as a sophisticated investor, an individual needs to have net assets of $2.5 million. Do you include super funds and one's residential home in the calculation of net assets? If your SMSF does not have $2.5 million in assets, but the two directors of the corporate trustee each has more than $2.5 million in net assets, can the test of a wholesale investor apply to the SMSF?

Max Newnham Answered by Max Newnham 2wks ago

Qualifying for the SAPTO

We are both self funded retirees, in our 70's on an allocated pension through our SMSF, we also have investments outside of our SMSF, and have a commonwealth seniors health card. I read where seniors and pensioners could be illegible for a Seniors and Pensioners Tax Offset (SAPTO) which effectively gives one access to a higher tax-free threshold. Can you please explain what the criteria is to qualify for the SAPTO?

Max Newnham Answered by Max Newnham 2wks ago

Maximum SMSF contributions

We have $200,000 in an SMSF and $850,000 outside of super. We are self employed and still working. One aged 58 before July 1, and the other aged 60 in August. What is the maximum we can contribute to the SMSF to attract the lowest tax rate this financial year? Also, I would like to know more about the bring forward policy, that is how much, by what date and what would be the benefits (or otherwise) of doing so?

Max Newnham Answered by Max Newnham 2wks ago

Tax and deeming rules

We have $200,000 invested with Ubank returning 2.8 per cent pa based on depositing $200 PM. We are self funded retirees, invested in InvestSmart as well. I read in the weekend press, that the deeming rates for bank investments is 3.8 per cent. Does mean our investment with Ubank returning 2.8 per cent will be taxed at earnings of 3.8 per cent?

Max Newnham Answered by Max Newnham 2wks ago

Divorce, assets and the pension

My husband and I are self funded retirees about to divorce. Our assets are simple. We have our family home which is in my name. He has an amount of money in his super fund, which happens to be equal to the value of our home. We would like to divide our assets equally. He is over 65 and I am 50. The easy thing to do is I take the house, he takes the money in the super fund. However if we reverse the arrangement i.e. he takes the house and I take the money, it means he can then claim the Centrelink Age Pension, and I will have an income to live on with the SMSF assets that he will transfer to me as part of the settlement. Financially, does that sound like a reasonable plan? Would the Centrelink Age Pension gifting rules allow that? I am not sure whether the transfer of his super fund money to me as part of our divorce settlement would be deemed as 'gifting'. Would stamp duty be payable with the change in ownership of our family home?

Max Newnham Answered by Max Newnham 2wks ago

Changing super funds

I want to change super funds and want to know if I will be eligible to receive impending (i.e. for companies in ex div) distributions and franking credits from the fund which I am departing? Or, put another way, will my existing fund transfer the distributions to my new fund after money from my old account has been transferred to the new one?

Max Newnham Answered by Max Newnham 3wks ago

Claiming medical rebates

Could you please clarify which financial year is the last year to be able to claim the ATO's medical rebate for Aged Care expenses? The ATO's site is most unclear by using the term "until 2018-19". Does that mean that it is available to be claimed for the coming financial year or does it mean the the rebate ends at the end of this financial year 20178-18? Thanks in advance Caz

Tony Kaye Answered by Tony Kaye 3wks ago

Living off the pension

I (couple) am in my 70s we own our own house and have well over $2 million in a SMSF. We are getting tired of all the complication and uncertainties of being self funded and I'm starting to think what if we just shut the SMSF down, sold our house and bought a house using all our cash bar $300k. Could we then claim the full government pension, as $50k per annum cash is plenty for us to live on in our situation, especially if it meant getting the health care card as well.

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