Pulse Alert – News Pulse for March 20, 2019

A daily download of SME, startup, fintech and tax news from around Australia.

Democratising startups: Why Antler’s startup generator will benefit the whole Aussie ecosystem

Global startup generator and venture capital firm Antler is launching in Sydney, in a bid to bring as many as 50 new startups into the ecosystem in the space of a year.

The Antler program doesn’t require applicants to have a co-founder, any experience, or even a startup idea.

Race against time for employers fighting casual ‘double dipping’

Employers could be exposed to claims for leave entitlements worth up to $8 billion for casual workers if Labor repeals a Coalition law aimed preventing “double dipping”, according to new legal advice.

The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry is distributing the advice, which comes amid a slew of class action lawsuits, that it commissioned from workplace barrister Frank Parry, QC, ahead of a Senate debate next week to “disallow” a government regulation aimed at protecting employers.

Address to the Tax Institute’s 34th National Convention, Hobart, Tasmania | The Hon Stuart Robert MP

Thank you for that introduction and warm welcome. I’d like to thank The Tax Institute for the opportunity to speak to the Convention.

The Convention is a great way to hear from presenters across the profession. I’m impressed by your commitment to educating tax professionals. But, most of all, I’m impressed – and continue to be impressed – with the Tax Institute’s willingness to engage with the Treasury and the Australian Taxation Office.

Property one option for small business

When most small business owners think about acquiring property through their self-managed super fund (SMSF), they often assume the only way to do it is by directly borrowing from a bank.

But with major lenders withdrawing from the SMSF lending market, SMEs and their advisers are turning to some little-known but long-standing alternatives to acquire property.

Open banking push on track

There were predictable howls of protest from the fintech community late last year when the federal Treasury pushed back the deadline for the introduction of some important open banking initiatives by eight months.

Despite the setback, a key member of the Federal Government’s open banking advisory committee will tell the world’s leading fintech conference in Singapore on Wednesday that Australia remains at the forefront of countries determined to disrupt incumbent banks’ stranglehold on data.

ATO ramps up its focus on rental properties

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO Australian Taxation Office) is ramping up its enforcement activities and will undertake 4,500 audits of taxpayers it considers are “high risk” because they overclaim or don’t declare income relating to rental properties.

ATO Australian Taxation Office assistant commissioner Adam Kendrick said it would audit 2017-2018 financial year tax returns relating to rental investments that its data analytics systems had flagged as potentially problematic.

New quarterly STP reporting method for closely held payees revealed

reporting , with employers due to start quarterly reporting from 1 July 2020.

The ATO Australian Taxation Office’s definition of a closely held employee is one who is a non-arm’s length employee, directly related to the entity from which they receive payments, including family members of a family business, directors of a company and shareholders or beneficiaries.

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