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2017 April ClearNews

Welcome to ClearNews April 2017.

Every few months, ClearNews tells you what's new at Cleardocs. We also send you monthly ClearLaw emails discussing legal developments relevant to the documents we provide.

Cleardocs Team

Cleardocs nominated to win SMSF Document Provider at SMSF Adviser's SMSF Awards 2017

SMSF Adviser has launched their annual SMSF Awards 2017 to establish the best performing operators servicing SMSF professionals and Cleardocs are in the running to win SMSF Document Provider of the year!

We won Core Data's SMSF Deed Supplier of the Year in 2015 and 2016 and this year we also want to win an SMSF Adviser award. Winning these awards strengthens our business and helps us to provide the best products and service that we can.

A few minutes of your valuable time can not only help us win but for every completed survey they will donate $1 to Cancer Council Australia.


Superannuation Reforms 2017

The superannuation reforms first revealed in the May 2016 Federal Budget, are finally taking shape.

The main Acts have become law, and the draft Regulations were open for public comment until 10 February 2017.

It is clear that from 1 July 2017 the super landscape will have been altered in important ways. This article summarises the key changes.

What are the legal changes?

Some of the key reforms to the super laws include the following:

  • imposition of a $1.6 million cap on the asset value of all fund accounts in pension phase;
  • reduction of the concessional superannuation contributions cap to $25,000 per annum;
  • reduction of the non-concessional contributions cap to $100,000 per annum;
  • increasing access to income tax deductions for all individuals making concessional superannuation contributions; and
  • introduction of the ability to 'bring forward' unused concessional superannuation contribution caps which can be rolled over for up to 5 years.

More in depth information on the changes is set out in our recent ClearLaw article "Superannuation reforms".

What changes have been made to the Cleardocs documents?

First, the pension terms have been revised in some meaningful ways. Primarily this requires changes to the pension document but also to some provisions of the deed relating to pensions.

Second, there are changes to certain rates, contributions caps etc which are more relevant to the PDS documents.

Third, there are changes of relevant to SMSF advisors in practice - eg. the low income super contribution offset and spouse contributions rules.

Fourth, there are those changes around the new pension commutation rules, and creation of reversionary beneficiary arrangements (such as through death benefit nominations and death benefit agreements).

Fifth, there are those changes which are of general importance and interest.

Do I need to update my SMSF deed?

No, it is not necessary to update your trust deed but top 20 law firm, Maddocks recommends it.

The new format of the SMSF Trust Deed will be in place for SMSFs set up on or after version 2017 and subsequent SMSF Updates and Change of Trustee .

If you have a deed from an earlier version, this does not necessarily mean your deed is outdated. However Maddocks recommends updating your deed to reflect current laws and best practice.

How do I update my deed to the latest version?

To update your, or your client's, existing deed to the latest version:

  • log in to your Cleardocs account;
  • click to start a new Update to SMSF order ;
  • select your fund on the pre-form page so we can pre-fill your order;
  • complete your order and pay $99.00 to receive your updated replacement trust deed.

If you have more than 10 SMSFs to update, Cleardocs is happy to assist. Simply send us details of all the SMSF funds that need to be updated to and we can prepare the orders for you.

Cleardocs integrates with BGL Super Fund and Class Super to make bulk SMF updates easy

With the release of our updated trust deed incorporating the recent super reforms, many customers have approached us about bulk orders for SMSF updates. For bulk SMSF updates, we can provide price discounts and simplify payment methods.

Also, we have also been working hard to further streamline the approach for data upload into our system — to save you the data entry and take the pain out of the process.

  • We have now integrated with BGL Cloud & Desktop. This integration allows importing of BGL fund details directly into the Update to SMSF question interfaces. You will then receive an email with links to your individual orders so that you can complete them and receive your updated SMSF deeds.
  • Similarly, we are integrating with Class Super to allow importing of Class fund details into the Cleardocs system.
  • We are developing a tool to allow the importing of fund details from your own spreadsheet.
  • We will shortly be introducing a new feature to our My SMSFs page to allow easy bulk updates for existing Cleardocs funds.

How will the 2017 Federal Budget affect you and your clients?

The 2017-18 Federal Budget will be handed down by the Treasurer on Tuesday 9 May 2017. Thomson Reuters Head of Tax News and Senior Tax Analyst Terry Hayes and his team will again be at Parliament House on Budget night preparing their comprehensive and detailed 2017 Weekly Tax Bulletin Federal Budget Report.

The report will contain Thomson Reuters' acclaimed coverage and analysis across a wide range of issues including:

  • Personal
  • Corporate
  • Business and international tax
  • Compliance
  • Superannuation
  • GST
  • Social security; and more.

To find out and to ensure you receive comprehensive reporting of this year's Federal Budget, sign up to receive your free copy of the 2017 Weekly Tax Bulletin Federal Budget Report.