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The SMSF trustee calendar 2015

We all know how time consuming being an SMSF trustee can be. The work involved can seem never-ending. Well, what follows is a diary of SMSF events for 2015 that hopefully will help you plan for the year ahead. I hope you find it useful.

January
It’s the new year – time for those resolutions. For SMSF trustees, reviewing your fund’s investment strategy and individual investments should be top of the list.

Questions to ask yourself include:

  • What are your overall investment objectives?
  • What is your desired rate of return? Did your fund meet your target in 2014?
  • What is your fund/member risk profile? Is it still appropriate?
  • Are you satisfied with your current portfolio holdings and fund diversity?
  • Are there any other asset classes worth considering?

When you review your investment strategy, you should also review and, if necessary, update your nomination of beneficiary documents. Are they still relevant? Is your nomination binding? If so, review the date of signing as they need to be reviewed every three years if they are not a perpetual binding nomination.

February
28   Tax lodgment deadline for SMSFs established in the 2014 financial year.
Lodgment deadline for December quarter activity statements.

March
Have you seen your 2013/14 financial statements? If not, you’re nearing the lodgment deadline and it’s time to follow up with your accountant/administrator.

April
28   Lodgment deadline for March quarter activity statements.

May
Budget announcements
It’s important as an SMSF trustee to be across any budget announcements about changes to super and how they may affect you.

15   Tax lodgment deadline for all other SMSFs.
It’s time to start your year-end planning.

Contributions

  • Are your member contributions up to date?
  • Have you maximised your concessional cap?
  • Ensure you don’t exceed your cap to avoid excess contributions tax.
  • There are transitional rules for members turning 50 during the financial year – do they apply to you?
  • The government co-contribution – if eligible have you made a contribution?
  • Is it an appropriate time to make a $540,000 non-concessional contribution and take advantage of the bring-forward rule?

Self-employed
It’s time to review your business financials and decide what (if any) amount you wish to contribute to your fund before 30 June.

Pensions

  • Are you aged 55? Can you benefit from starting a transition-to-retirement (TTR) pension?
  • Are you aged 60 or over? Can you benefit from starting an account-based pension/TTR?
  • If setting up a pension, you may want to review your fund’s carried forward capital losses. If there is an amount you wish to use, you will need to keep a balance in your accumulation account.

Government benefits

  • Are you eligible for the government age pension or Commonwealth Seniors Health Card?

June
Funds in pension mode

  • What were your minimum/maximum pension requirements for the financial year? Have you met your pension obligations? If not, it’s time to top them up.

July – We move into 2015/16
14   Pay-as-you-go (PAYG) payment summaries must be distributed to pension members under 60.
28   Lodgment deadline for June quarter activity statements.

Funds in pension mode
It’s time to review your new minimum/maximum pension figures for the 2016 financial year. Although you won’t have exact figures until your year-end financial statements are complete, this is an ideal time to review and change any periodic pension payments you may have set up.
TTR pension recipients should review their accumulation and pension account balances and consider a consolidation of the pension and/or the establishment of a second pension if more favourable.

August
14   Lodgment of PAYG summaries and statements to the Australian Taxation Office.

Contribution confirmations
It’s time to review your member contributions for 2014/15 and prepare your notice of intent to claim or vary a deduction for personal super contributions to give to your accountant so they can start on your year-end financial statements.

October
28   Lodgment deadline for September quarter activity statements.

December
Financial markets are generally quiet as we near the Christmas/holiday period. Are there any investment opportunities?

Olivia Long is executive director of SuperGuardian

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