By Natalie Gosper, a Solicitor in our Commercial Law team
Most trustees of SMSFs are aware that record keeping is important to ensure their Fund remains compliant and eligible for tax concessions, but few trustees understand the actual ramifications of what happens when you don’t keep the right records.
The task of record keeping is often left to the Fund’s accountant or adviser, which should be a wise choice however there are records the trustees must retain which are often overlooked.
The ATO website contains a great deal of helpful information for SMSF trustees including the records a fund must keep. See https://www.ato.gov.au/super/self-managed-super-funds/administering-and-reporting/record-keeping-requirements/ For example, copies of annual returns must be retained for at least 5 years but records of changes of trustees and minutes recording investment decisions must be kept for at least 10 years.
Where it can go wrong – a real life example
Maintaining the chain of deeds
A and B set up the AB Super Fund in 1987. They are the trustees of the Fund in their own capacity.