New threshold for capital gains withholding (1)

Capital gains withholding, a new threshold – What you need to know

Capital gains withholding, a new threshold

From 1 July 2017, where a foreign resident disposes of Australian real property with a market value of $750,000 or above, the purchaser will be required to withhold 12.5% of the purchase price and pay it to the ATO unless the seller provides a variation (this is referred to as ‘foreign resident capital gains withholding’).

However, Australian resident vendors who dispose of Australian real property with a market value of $750,000 or above will need to apply for a clearance certificate from the ATO to ensure amounts are not withheld from their sale proceeds.

Therefore, all transactions involving real property with a market value of $750,000 or above will need the vendor and purchaser to consider if a clearance certificate is required.

The following is from the ATO’s website:

  • Australian resident vendors can avoid the 12.5%  withholding by providing one of the following to the purchaser prior to settlement:
    • for Australian real property, a clearance certificate obtained from the ATO
    • for other asset types, a vendor declaration they are not a foreign resident.
  • Foreign resident vendors may apply for a variation of the withholding rate or make a declaration that a membership interest is not an indirect Australian real property interest and therefore not subject to withholding.
  • Purchasers must pay the amount withheld at settlement to the Commissioner of Taxation.

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We needed a better way to look after our SMSF clients. So we created one. We experienced first hand the frustration of the ‘old way’ of looking after SMSFs: Financial statements that were out of date by at least 6 months and of no use to anyone other than the ATO, high fees and poor value due to highly skilled and knowledgeable staff spending unnecessary time on laborious data entry and worst of all SMSF trustees not getting the right advice at the right time!