Fringe Benefits Tax News

Issues on the ATO's radar 

The ATO has updated its list of 'What attracts our attention', with six items that specifically relate to fringe benefits tax ('FBT'), as follows: 

  • Using non-commercial parking rates; or 

  • Parking rates not being supported by adequate evidence. 

  • Mismatches between the amount reported as an employee contribution on an FBT return compared to the income amounts on an employer's tax return. 

  • Claiming entertainment expenses as a deduction but not correctly reporting them as a fringe benefit, or incorrectly classifying entertainment expenses as sponsorship or advertising. 

  • Not reporting fringe benefits on business assets that are provided for the personal enjoyment of employees or associates. 

  • Not lodging FBT returns (or lodging them late) to delay or avoid payment of tax. 

Record-keeping exemption threshold & Benchmark interest rate 

The exemption threshold for the FBT year commenced 1 April 2019 is $8,714 (up from the amount of $8,552 that applied in the previous year). 

The benchmark interest rate for the FBT year commenced 1 April 2019 is 5.37% per annum (up from the rate of 5.20% that applied for the previous FBT year). 

This rate is used to calculate the taxable value of: 

  • A fringe benefit provided by way of a loan; and 

  • A car fringe benefit where an employer chooses to value the benefit using the operating cost method.