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COVID-19 and Corporate Insolvency: New tax legislation directors need to know

By Andrew Hack, Solicitor, and Stephen Mullette, Principal, of Matthews Folbigg Lawyers, in our Insolvency, Restructuring and Debt Recovery Group.

In the light of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Federal Government has acted to ameliorate some risks to directors. This includes recently introduced risks to directors.  Directors should be aware of new amendments to the Taxation Administration Act 1953 (Cth) (“the TAA”). The amendments include:

  1. New rules about post-dating ASIC notification of a director resignation;
  2. An estimates regime for GST payments;
  3. Application of the Director Penalty Notice (“DPN”) regime to account for the estimates regime for GST payments; and
  4. Retention of tax refunds for failing to comply with obligations.

Director Resignations

These new rules provide that any notification of a director resignation lodged with ASIC 28 days after the resignation date will only be effective from date of notification. This means that even if a director resigned several years ago, he or she will remain a director (with all of the liabilities associated with such appointment) until their resignation is lodged with ASIC. Therefore, directors who resign should ensure that they lodge a Form 370 with ASIC as soon as possible. If they fail to notify ASIC within 28 days, they may find themselves liable in respect of any non-compliance by the remaining directors.
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