Bills to increase fees on SMSF auditors introduced to Parliament

The Government has introduced Bills to Parliament to implement a fee-for-service model for ASIC, which includes substantial increases in fees for SMSF auditors.

“No longer will Australian taxpayers have to subsidise any difference between the fee an entity pays and the actual costs incurred by ASIC, ensuring ASIC’s costs are borne by those that have created the need for it,” said Minister for Revenue and Financial Services, Kelly O’Dwyer.

“The industry funding model promotes equity, encourages greater regulatory compliance, and enhances ASIC’s transparency and accountability. These Bills will strengthen ASIC’s capabilities to ensure it is an effective regulator.”

Minister O’Dwyer said the ASIC Industry Funding Model will commence on 1 July 2018.

The Superannuation Auditor Registration Imposition Amendment (ASIC Fees) Bill 2018 would raise the cap on fees ASIC can charge SMSF auditors from $1,000 to $3,000. This is reduced from the draft Bill, which had the cap at $5,000.

The Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Amendment (ASIC Fees) Bill 2018 would allow for fees to be charged for applying for an SMSF auditor registration to be cancelled and for applying to conditions on a registration to be varied or revoked.

The actual level of fees will be set in regulations, but it appears that under the funding model several fees applicable to SMSF auditors will increase dramatically. Based on draft regulations released the Government plans to increase the fee to register as an SMSF auditor from $107 to $1,927. The fee to cancel a registration would go from nil to $899.

The level of the fees, and the fee for cancelling an SMSF registration, has been criticised by the accounting body CAANZ.

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