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What Changed on 1 July 2023

As of 1 July 2023, several important changes have come into effect, impacting employers, businesses, and individuals across various aspects of their financial and professional lives. Understanding these changes is crucial for staying compliant and making informed decisions. Let’s explore the key updates that have taken place.

Employers & Businesses

  • Superannuation Guarantee Increase: The superannuation guarantee has been raised from 10.5% to 11%. Employers are now required to contribute this higher percentage towards their employees’ superannuation funds.
  • Minimum Wage Increases: National and Award minimum wage increases have taken effect, ensuring fair compensation for workers across different industries and occupations.
  • Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold (TSMIT) Increase: The minimum salary that must be paid to sponsored employees under the Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold has increased from $53,900 to $70,000.
  • Work Restrictions for Student Visa Holders: Work restrictions for student visa holders have been reintroduced, limiting their working hours to 48 hours per fortnight.
  • Small Claims Court Cap Increase: The cap on claims made via the small claims court procedures to recover unpaid work entitlements has been raised from $20,000 to $100,000. This provides workers with a higher threshold for seeking recourse against employers.
  • Energy Bill Relief Fund for Small Businesses: The Energy Bill Relief Fund has been implemented, providing eligible small businesses with relief on their energy bills. Businesses that meet the criteria can take advantage of this initiative to reduce their energy costs.
  • Sharing Economy Reporting: Reporting obligations for electronic distribution platforms operating in the sharing economy have commenced. These platforms are now required to report relevant information to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

Superannuation

  • Superannuation Guarantee Increase: The superannuation guarantee rate has risen to 11%, with employers now obligated to contribute this percentage to their employees’ superannuation funds.
  • General Transfer Balance Cap Indexation: The general transfer balance cap has been indexed, increasing it to $1.9 million. This cap sets a limit on the total amount that can be transferred into a tax-free retirement phase account.
  • Minimum Pension Amounts for Super Income Streams: Minimum pension amounts for super income streams have returned to default rates. Individuals receiving income from their superannuation funds need to ensure they meet the required minimum payment obligations.
  • SMSF Transfer Balance Event Reporting: Self-Managed Superannuation Funds (SMSFs) are now required to report transfer balance events on a quarterly basis, moving from the previous annual reporting requirement.

For You and Your Family

  • Fixed Rate Method for Working from Home Deductions: A new fixed rate method for claiming working from home deductions has been introduced, allowing individuals to claim 67 cents per hour for home office expenses. It is important to maintain accurate records of the actual hours worked from home.
  • Expansion of First Home Loan Guarantee: Access to the First Home Loan Guarantee program has been expanded to include “friends, siblings, and other family members” as eligible applicants. This program assists first home buyers in obtaining loans with a deposit as low as 5%.
  • Medicare Low Income Threshold Increase: The Medicare low income threshold has been increased for the 2022-23 financial year, providing relief for individuals with lower incomes.
  • Child Care Subsidy Increase: The child care subsidy has increased from 10 July 2023 for families with a household income under $530,000. Detailed information about the changes can be found on the Services Australia website.
  • Extended Paid Parental Leave: New parents can now claim up to 20 weeks of paid parental leave, providing additional support during the crucial early stages of parenthood.
  • Age Pension Access Increase: Access to the age pension has been extended, allowing individuals to claim the pension from the age of 67.

Staying informed about these changes and understanding their implications is essential for employers, businesses, and individuals to navigate the evolving financial and regulatory landscape effectively. Seeking professional advice and utilising available resources will ensure compliance and enable you to make the most of the opportunities presented by these updates. Get in touch with us now!

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