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IPA queries government case on SMSF audit cycle

The Institute of Public Accountants has questioned whether the government’s proposed changes to the SMSF audit cycle will achieve any sort of compliance cost savings.

IPA queries government case on SMSF audit cycle
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IPA chief executive Andrew Conway said the Institute was working with Treasury and with the Minister for Revenue and Financial Services Kelly O’Dwyer over the proposal.

He questioned whether reducing the audit cycle would enhance regulatory oversight and transparency in the SMSF sector.

“Without an annual SMSF auditor oversight, how will the regulator of the SMSF sector, monitor compliance?” Mr Conway said.

“These issues go far beyond the impact on SMSF auditors and speak to the very confidence and transparency of the SMSF sector.

“Arguments around compliance costs are myopic at best as trustees are likely to be required to have a three-year audit at greater total cost than the current 12-month) review. Will the unsubstantiated audit cost-saving be worth the significant risks such a measure introduces?”

Last week, Mr Conway said in a YouTube video that he’d received many concerns from members, adding that “it is important for the SMSF sector to be robust, strong and transparent”.

“One of the ways of achieving that is of course through the performance of an audit. We are presenting those concerns to the government and we are working very closely with them to make sure we firstly understand the policy rationale for this change,” he said.

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