Amendments to Trust Loss Bill before Parliament - lobbying continues - The Federal Government has proposed amendments to Taxation Laws Amendment (Trust Loss and Other Deductions) Bill 1997 dealing with the definition of "closely held", evidencing family trust or interposed entity elections and technical and transitional amendments. Meanwhile, lobbying continues to have the proposed trust loss provisions shelved. It has been put to the Government that the issue of trust losses should form part of the review of trusts undertaken as part of the Government's current tax reform deliberations.

Forgiven inter-company loan caught by s108 - The Federal Court has held that the forgiveness of an inter-company loan constituted the payment of a deemed dividend to the taxpayer under s108 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 (Lonsdale Sand and Metal Pty Ltd v FCT).

The Company Law Review Bill 1997 - This Bill was passed by the House of Representatives on 4 March 1998 and was introduced into the Senate on 5 March 1998 but has not yet been debated by the Senate. The Bill was referred on 3 March 1998 to the Joint Committee on Corporations and Securities to report by 23 March 1998.

FBT lodgment details for new employers - The ATO has verbally confirmed that employers who are lodging a Fringe Benefits Tax return for the first time, have until 28 May 1998 to lodge their 1998 FBT return and pay their 1997/98 FBT liability.

Two tax determinations issued

Taxation consequences for an individual resident shareholder who accepted the share buy-back offer made by the Commonwealth Bank of Australia on 1 December 1997 (Tax Determination 98/2); and Deductibility of costs incurred by a horticulture business in maintaining plants at nurseries (Tax Determination 98/3).

Inquiry into NSW land tax - The New South Wales Legislative Council General Purpose Standing Committee has convened to conduct an inquiry into the NSW land tax. This follows controversy surrounding the imposition of land tax on "luxury homes" and recent increases in the rate of tax.

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