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Managing It

Tax Reform – what will it mean for us?

MALCOLM TURNBULL’S “PRECONDITIONS” 1. “We are not going to raise more tax overall.” 2. “Any changes are going to be rigorously fair.” 3. “They’ve got to drive jobs and growth.” How will they rein in the budget deficit then? Expenditure is the other side of the equation - possibly starting with using the private sector to administer Medicare, Aged Care, and/or the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.

Repossession – know your rights

WHAT TO DO If you receive a default notice, act immediately. Pay the arrears within 30 days if you can. If you can’t, contact the credit provider and ask to speak to a ‘hardship officer’ or to ‘customer service’ (see 'At the end of your tether' for more information). If the lender won’t agree to a repayment arrangement, lodge a dispute in writing to the lender’s External Dispute Resolution Scheme (All lenders must be a member of an EDR scheme.) EDR is free and will stop all legal action, including repossession, until the EDR Scheme has considered your dispute.

Budgeting blues? There’s an app for that

THE APPY COUNTRY Australians lead the world in the use of mobile banking applications, interacting with our banks via apps more than any other method. According to a recent Bain and Company survey, we use apps for 38% of bank interactions, and desktop online banking for another 35% (and hardly ever walk into a branch).

When DON’T you need to lodge a tax return?

IF YOU DO NOT NEED TO LODGE A RETURN… …but you have previously lodged returns, you're still not entirely off the hook. You should submit a "Non-lodgment Advice" to the Australian Taxation Office. IF YOU DO NEED TO LODGE ONE... ...and are doing it yourself (rather than via a tax agent), you need to lodge it by 31 October or you could face a penalty.