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Family business dividend rules

A decision by the ATO to clam down on dividen access share arrangements is is adding to the pressure the ATO is currently putting on family businesses.  The tax office has started paying more attention to family groups within the last couple of months, which means those SME’s have had to spend more time on paperwork.

Although use of dividend access share arrangement is not widespread, it can be used by family business to distribute dividends where a particular ownership structure is impeding the flow.

One solution to the problem of complex ownership structures could be some modification of some tax consolidation rules.  These allow for a group of companies to be treated as one payee for tax purposes.  If they have one share holding parent company, transactions within that group are ignored.

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