The ATO has released a register of the over 2,800 disqualified SMSF trustees.
The ATO says the register will make the information easier to search, helping SMSF professionals identify disqualified trustees.
A register for disqualified SMSF trustees was flagged in February, in a speech by ATO Assistant Commissioner for Superannuation Dana Fleming.
“Professional bodies, on behalf of their members, have expressed their frustration to us about the difficultly in ascertaining if a new client has been previously disqualified by the ATO,” Fleming said at the time.
“It’s important that advisers, tax agents and auditors can readily identify previously disqualified trustees so they don’t assist these to set up a fund when they are not a fit and proper person to be a trustee.”
The information had been available – disqualifications are published in the Government Notices Gazette – but was fragmented and so difficult to search.
“When setting up an SMSF and appointing trustees it’s necessary to ensure a trustee hasn’t been disqualified due to past contraventions or if we’ve identified them as not ‘fit and proper’ to be a trustee,” says the ATO.
“We’re now providing you with a Disqualified trustees register to help identify, and prevent from re-entering the sector, those who’ve been disqualified.”
The register is a spreadsheet file, which will be updated by the ATO quarterly – the last disqualification was in December 2018. The register lists first name, surname, suburb, state, postcode, date of disqualification and links to the notice in the Gazette.
As it stands, the register contains over 2,800 names – the SMSF trustees who have been disqualified since 2012, when this information first started to be published electronically according to the ATO.