TASA ‘rushed and flawed’

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An inquiry in to the Tax Laws Amendment Bill, including TASA, has been rejected by Labor, and Parliament will be voting on the changes today much to the concern of the AFA.

AFA CEO Brad Fox said there had been inadequate reviews of the legislation and that this posed a serious risk of unintended consequences.

“While the AFA accepts that financial advisers will come under the TASA regime, we are deeply concerned about the way it is being done and the timeframe in which it is being implemented,” he said. “We also continue to have significant concerns about the way the legislation has been drafted, specifically the definition of ‘tax (financial) advice services’.”

Fox said the Government has had three years since the TASA regime was introduced to address its application to financial advisers. 

“We have lobbied continually on this issue for several months,” he said. “We do not understand why the Government has left it until the last minute, only one month before the scheduled commencement date to address the issue, particularly given the fact that  financial advisers are already highly focussed on the significant challenges involved in the implementation of the Future of Financial Advice reforms.

“We are also particularly concerned with the lack of detail and regulation or guidance and will be seeking for the TASA legislation as it pertains to financial advisers to be removed from the Bill so that it may be subject to appropriate industry consultation and deferred for six to 12 months.”

FPA policy and Government relations general manager Dante De Gori said it was very much a waiting game now, while the associations wait to see whether the Bill is referred to a Committee for a review.

He said the FPA had been speaking with the Independents, who were all very receptive, and that the Opposition was keen to remove the TASA sections from the legislation, so that it could be reviewed while the legislation could be passed.