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Difference Between Tax Agents and Tax Planning Specialists

Although Australia has 42,561 registered tax agents, less than 1% of these actually provide any specialist tax planning advise to their clients. Ninety nine percent of tax agents are compliance accountants who ensure that you comply with the tax laws and report to the ATO in the approved format (i.e. they put the right figures in the right boxes for you).

In contrast, tax planning specialists investigate what legal strategies you could implement to make structured savings and the required action/steps that are necessary to make those tax savings happen.

4 Step Tax Planning Process

  1. Information gathering – For effective tax planning essential client information is collected:
    • The group members (i.e. all the individuals and entities that make up the client’s overall structure),
    • Group members’ current year income and expenses,
    • Group members’ assets and liabilities.
  2. Selecting tax strategies – This is a two-part process. Firstly, your unique circumstances (identified through step 1) are considered in conjunction with the unique attributes of each available tax strategy. We use a tax strategies database with over 250 strategies. Then secondly, we use our experience, knowledge, and expertise to select up to 10 optimal tax strategies for you.
  3. Tax savings report – Special tax planning software is then used to produce a report that details the tax savings generated from implementing the selected tax strategies, and the step-by-step process to legally and effectively implement each strategy (including the cost).
  4. Client discussion and implementation – We then discuss the tax savings report and implementation process with you so you fully understand the options. We can then also implement the strategies for you if you choose to proceed.