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Tax body publishes new SMSF trustee book

Taxpayers Australia has launched a book designed to boost SMSF trustee knowledge and assist them in running their own retirement savings vehicles.

“The Ultimate SMSF Trustee’s Guide”, written by Taxpayers Australia head of superannuation Reece Agland, is aimed at providing new SMSF trustees with critical information they need to know and additional sector insight to established trustees.

“Eighteen months ago I was approached to come over from the Institute of Public Accountants to Taxpayers Australia to look at the superannuation products and services and see how we could do things better,” Agland said.

“We had a lot of very good parts in the SMSF space, but they were really aimed at the SMSF professional.

“What I found lacking was a focus on the trustee … they’re the key people to avoiding a lot of the problems and getting things right.

“So the intention of the book was to get into the hands of trustees and give them an easy to understand appreciation of what an SMSF is.”

He said the point of the exercise was not to “dumb down” information for trustees, but more to put the information across in language they could better understand, allowing them to pick up the critical issues more easily.

In particular, it has been written to provide a reference for what legally can and cannot be done within an SMSF.

However, Agland said the book would not stop deliberate illegal SMSF trustee behaviour.

“You can’t help those people who deliberately do the wrong thing,” he said.

“You can’t help those people who are ignorant and don’t want to read, but most trustees want to do the right thing.”

The book should be most helpful to younger SMSF trustees who did not have years of investing experience behind them, he said.

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