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I suspect possible fraud my parents use to avoid paying tax

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I am not sure, but I feel like the complex tax setup my parents have setup with their family business may be breaking rules or bending them a lot in order to minimise tax.  I am also concerned I may get caught up in this as I was used to do it.

 

The basic setup is that my parents own a small business.  This small business pays almost 100% of its profit to a parent company ("P").  This parent company then pays a discretionary investment trust ("T"), how much exactly I'm not sure.  Hopefully you're still with me.

 

The issue is that my parents, when trying to pay for something, say a holiday/house/car, have little income to pay for it.  The accountants tell them to take a loan from the parent company "P", instead of simply being paid income.  They use the loan to pay for whatever they want.  To repay the loan, they tell the trust "T" to distribute dividends to beneficiaries (their children - including myself) who are on a lower tax bracket.  The money is never actually transfered to any of us.  It is then immediately "gifted" to my parents, so they don't have to pay the higher tax on what is essentially their income, but uses so many dodgy hoops and loopholes that I feel this must be tax evasion.

 

I am sure though, that the accountants all have decent excuses why it is all set up this way, and have tried questioning them.  However having a trust pay me money that I never see, that stops just before the next tax bracket and is immediately "gifted" away without me seeing any of it, it seems wrong.  Is there any advice? Is this tax evasion? Should I talk to a separate accountant? Lawyer? Am I getting concerned over nothing?

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Devotee Registered Tax Practitioner

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 Am I getting concerned over nothing?

 

Most likely.  Ask the accounting firm to explain it to you.

 

Appears to be Div 7A loans being repaid by dividends  -  this is a normal, legal process.

 

1 REPLY 1

Most helpful response

Devotee Registered Tax Practitioner

Replies 0

 Am I getting concerned over nothing?

 

Most likely.  Ask the accounting firm to explain it to you.

 

Appears to be Div 7A loans being repaid by dividends  -  this is a normal, legal process.