Budget 2020: Asset write-off, loss carry-back provisions and R&D changes pass parliament

Parliament House

Source: AAP/Mick Tsikas.

Legislation for key tax incentives contained in the federal budget passed through the federal parliament without amendments on Friday. 

Within days of being announced in the budget, the expanded asset write-off scheme, loss carry-back provisions and changes to the R&D Tax Incentive scheme passed both houses of parliament with the support of the two major parties.

However, the Greens sought to add some amendments to the Treasury Laws Amendment (A Tax Plan for the COVID-19 Economic Recovery) Bill 2020, which also contains provisions for the second stage of the government’s personal income tax cuts.

These amendments were not adopted, and according to the ABC, the personal income tax cuts will now start to flow to individuals within weeks, with the Australian Taxation Office to release new pay-as-you-go tables as soon as possible. 

The expanded asset write-off scheme will allow almost all Australian businesses to immediately write-off the full value of all new assets purchased over the next two years, without limits on the value of individual purchases.

Meanwhile, the loss carry-back provisions will allow businesses that were profitable last year to claim back some of the taxes they paid to offset losses made as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The bill also puts into effect the government’s changes to the R&D Tax Incentive, and increases the small business entity turnover threshold to give a larger number of businesses access to certain tax concessions.

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