10 tax planning strategies for businesses in 2024

As we near the end of another financial year, it is important to start thinking about strategies that can be implemented to reduce taxable income for the year ended 30 June 2024.

Here are 10 tax planning strategies that may be considered prior to 30 June 2024:

1. Defer income

A really simple strategy has always been to consider deferring income until the following financial year by way of deferring invoices.

2. Reviewing accounts receivable (debtors)

Taxpayers with outstanding debtors should review them to determine whether any are bad and can be written off prior to 30 June 2024, in order to claim a bad debt deduction.

3. Prepay expenses

Small Business Entities (entities with business turnover of less than $10 million) and Medium Business Entities (entities with business turnover of between $10 million – $50 million) are able to claim a tax deduction for prepayments made for an advance period of up to 12 months after end of financial year. For these taxpayers, making prepayments accelerates the timing of the tax deduction that would otherwise be ordinarily claimable in the following financial year.

4. Claiming tax deductions for business related asset purchases

For the 2024 financial year, those entities that carry on business with turnover of under $10 million are eligible to claim an immediate tax deduction for asset purchases made in the 2024 financial year that cost less than $20,000.

5. Write off obsolete inventory (stock)

If the business holds obsolete inventory that cannot be sold, write it off to claim a tax deduction.

6. Write off plant and equipment that is no longer used

Review the depreciation schedule to identify items of plant and equipment that is no longer used, and which has been scrapped. The balance of the written down value of the plant and equipment can be written off.

7. Consider restructuring inefficient business structures

There are various tax rollovers and tax concessions that can be used to restructure inefficient business structures without triggering any Capital Gains Tax implications.

Often, taxpayers establish business structures when they first establish their business that are no longer effective due to changes in business or personal circumstances.

Starting a new business structure effective from 1 July 2024 is the perfect time!

8. Trust distribution strategies for the 2024 financial year

It is a requirement of the ATO that trusts resolve how they will distribute their trust income for the 2024 financial year prior to 30 June 2024. Most commonly, this is done by the trust making a trust distribution resolution.

In determining how a trust distributes its income in the 2024 financial year, it is important to consider:

  • The ATO has previously issued a tax ruling which considers situations where a trust distributes income to a beneficiary, but the financial benefit of the distribution is directed to another person.  In determining trust distributions for the 2024 financial year, regard needs to be had to this ruling.
  • Where the income of the trust represents personal exertion income of one person, the income should be distributed to that person.
  • In relation to trusts that receive income from professional services businesses, the ATO has issued guidelines in relation to the quantum of income that is required to be distributed to the professional practitioner of the professional practice.  This may impact on how the trust distributes its income for the financial year.

9. Consider realising loss making investments

If capital gains have been realised in the 2024 financial year, consider realising investments with unrealised capital losses to offset the capital gain.

10. Make superannuation contributions by 30 June 2024

While superannuation guarantee for the June 2024 quarter is only required to be paid in July 2024, by paying the superannuation by 30 June 2024, a tax deduction can be claimed in the 2024 financial year.

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