The increase in the self-managed superannuation fund (SMSF) advisory levy contained in the Government’s Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook (MYEFO) should not be overly burdensome on trustees, according to Institute of Chartered Accountants Australia (ICAA) superannuation specialist Liz Westover.

Commenting on the MYEFO report on the ICAA web site, Westover acknowledged the manner in which the supervisory levy had risen over the past half decade, but claimed the costs of regulation of “such a huge and growing sector” had risen.

“Some in the SMSF industry will be unhappy about a 36 per cent increase in the SMSF supervisory levy,” she said. “From 2013-14, SMSFs will be paying $259, up from $191. It’s not that long ago that the amount was $45, so it could be argued that a 475 per cent increase in the levy over such a short period is not reasonable.

“However, I don’t believe we should focus too much on the percentage. The costs of regulation of such a huge and growing sector have increased and the Government has justified this new increase as necessary to cover these amounts. The new levy should not be overly burdensome on trustees.”

Westover said that more important was the fact that its payment had been brought forward and that it would be collected in the year of income to which it applies.

She said that while the Government had argued the move was based on creating consistencies with collection of APRA fund levies, it was more likely it was simply to bring forward cash-flows for the Government.



By Mike Taylor

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