Liquidators who provide a tax agent or BAS service to the company they are administering do not have to be registered as tax agents or BAS agents.
That is the ruling issued by the Tax Practitioners Board on 26 June 2012 in its Information Sheet TPB(1) 12/2012.
The same rule applies to most other types of insolvency practitioners appointed under the Corporations Act or the Bankruptcy Act.
But the rule, or exemption, only applies to work done for the client after the insolvency practitioner’s appointment. During the pre-appointment period the ban on unregistered persons providing a tax agent service or a BAS service for a fee or reward will apply.
The insolvency practitioners exempted under the ruling are liquidators, provisional liquidators, company administrators, administrators of deeds of company arrangement, receivers, receivers and managers, and bankruptcy trustees.
But the exemption might not apply to insolvency practitioners who act as agents for mortgagees in possession. On one reading of the Information Sheet it seems that because such insolvency practitioners are not agents of the company (as are liquidators, administrators and receivers) then they might not be performing the tax/BAS agent services “in accordance with the duties and responsibilities of the insolvency practitioner under the terms of the relevant legislation” in a situation “analogous to that of a self-preparing entity”. (See paras. 20 and 21.)
The Information Sheet also addresses the situation where, during the post-appointment period, an insolvency practitioner “bring(s) in outside consultants such as accountants or bookkeepers to deal with the entity’s tax or BAS issues”. The Tax Practitioners Board says that such consultants would need to be registered.
In other words, the exemption only applies where the insolvency practitioners or his or her employees carry out the tax work.
To see the TPB Information Sheet CLICK HERE.