Federal Parliament has recently passed legislation that allows tax deductibility for donations to a new education charity called Australian Schools Plus.

For the first time, this will allow donors to receive a DGR receipt for donations for general educational purposes to particular schools.

What are the Opportunities for Deductible Gift Donations for Schooling?

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Businesses including Not-for-Profit entities should review their privacy policies and procedures to ensure that they comply with the new Australian privacy principles before they commence on 14 March 2014.

The Privacy Amendment (Enhancing Privacy Protection) Act 2012 is the most significant privacy reform since the Privacy Act was introduced over 25 years ago. The new privacy principles will regulate the handling of personal information by businesses and Australian government agencies.


Continue Reading Privacy Act Amendments to Regulate Businesses and Government Agencies

Summary – Uniform national laws changing the legislative requirements for co-operatives have passed the NSW Parliament and have been introduced into every State Parliament.Successful negotiations

On 10 May 2012, New South Wales Fair Trading Minister Anthony Roberts welcomed the passage of the new Co-operatives (Adoption of National Laws) Bill 2012.

The new national law scheme introduces a significant reform for the Co-operatives sector as it moves towards uniform legislation regulating Co-operatives within each State and Territory. It aims at empowering co-operatives, cutting costs and reducing red tape.


Continue Reading New Co-operatives (Adoption of National Laws) Bill 2012

Summary – The Assistant Treasurer has issued a further Exposure Draft on proposed legislation restating and standardizing special conditions for tax concession charities including Map of Australiathe “In Australia” conditions.

The Assistant Treasurer has now released a further Exposure Draft of legislation restating and standardising special conditions for tax concession entities and, in particular, refining the “In Australia” special conditions.

Under the current law, tax concession charities and deductible gift recipients have different requirements concerning their obligations to operate “In Australia” to access tax concessions.


Continue Reading In Australia Tax Concession Requirements Reviewed

Stack of documentsSummary – The Treasurer released a consultation paper on charitable fundraising reform in February 2012.

The Treasury recently released a discussion paper and draft regulation impact statement in relation to proposed charitable fundraising reform.  At the moment, all States and Territories in Australia (except the Northern Territory) have their own fundraising regulations and they have different requirements for registration and compliance. The discussion paper proposes to introduce standardised fundraising laws across Australia.

The kinds of “fundraising activity” subject to regulation, as proposed by the paper, would encompass any activity involving the solicitation or receipt of money or other property primarily for a “charitable purpose”.  “Charitable purpose” will be defined in accordance with the upcoming statutory definition of “charity”, currently contemplated by the Commonwealth Government.  The requirement for a “charitable purpose” suggests that fundraising activities for causes that do not fall within the definition of “charity” will not be caught by the proposed national fundraising laws.


Continue Reading Fundraising Reform for Charities

Summary New laws introduced on 1 January 2012 change the way public ancillary funds are structured, operated and wound up.

On 1 January 2012, new laws governing the definition and operation of public ancillary funds came into force.  The definition is now the cornerstone for organisations seeking to have their ancillary fund endorsed by the Australian Taxation Office as a deductible gift recipient.

Trustees of and donors to public ancillary funds should be aware that:

  • new Public Ancillary Fund Guidelines 2011 (the Guidelines) now apply to certain public ancillary funds;
  • the Guidelines stipulate minimum levels of distributions from the public ancillary fund during a financial year;
  • the Commissioner now has powers to suspend and remove trustees of certain public ancillary funds, and appoint acting trustees in circumstances where the Guidelines are not complied with;
  • the legislation transitions most public ancillary funds into being managed by corporate trustees which meet certain constitutional criteria;
  • administrative penalties apply for breaches of certain rules in the Guidelines;
  • such administrative penalties can be imposed on directors of the corporate trustee in certain circumstances; and
  • there is a “phase-in” period specified for public ancillary funds that are already endorsed as deductible gift recipients.


Continue Reading Public Ancillary Funds – New Laws