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TPB invites submissions on governance guidance for recognised professional associations

TPB invites submissions on governance guidance for recognised professional associations

The Tax Practitioners Board (TPB) invites submissions on a draft information sheet which provides recognised professional associations with further guidance on corporate governance, operational procedures and accountability requirements in the Tax Agent Services Regulations 2009 (TASR).

Chair of the TPB, Mr Ian Taylor, said the development of this guidance reflects the TPB’s ongoing commitment to assisting existing recognised professional associations, and associations seeking recognition, to understand and demonstrate they meet their legislative obligations.

‘An association that is a TPB ‘recognised professional association’ gives their voting members an additional pathway to meet the tax practitioner registration requirements with the TPB,’ Mr Taylor said.

‘This draft information sheet outlines best practice for associations in demonstrating their processes and structures meet the requirements for recognition under the TASR.’

‘The draft information sheet is designed to provide these associations with additional support in clarifying the legislative obligations for recognition, adopting a principles-based and pragmatic approach rather than being too prescriptive.’

‘It is recognised that there is no one-set formula and that concepts of good corporate governance are contemporary in nature and will necessarily evolve over time as an organisation’s legislative environment and community expectations develop,’ Mr Taylor said.

‘While corporate governance, operational procedures and accountability are just some of the requirements that professional associations need to meet for recognition, we have expanded our guidance on these requirements as corporate governance models differ depending on the nature, size and structure of operations,’ Mr Taylor added.

‘Where an association needs to make changes to meet the TPB’s requirements, the TPB appreciates that these changes may take time to implement and, if this is necessary, the TPB will take a pragmatic approach in assessing an association’s ongoing compliance with requirements in the TASR,’ he said.

‘However, we will expect associations to provide undertakings to the TPB that relevant processes would be in place for the purpose of effecting any relevant changes where required, with the TPB kept informed in relation to progress.’

This draft guidance also complements the TPB’s annual declaration process for recognised professional associations. In April 2016, the TPB introduced an annual declaration for recognised professional associations to demonstrate that they continue to meet all of the ongoing eligibility requirements associated with recognition (as set out in the TASR).

‘The TPB implemented the annual declaration process to require all recognised professional associations to demonstrate that they continue to meet the ongoing eligibility requirements,’ Mr Taylor said.

Further information about eligibility requirements for recognised tax agent associations, including examples of the types of evidence that may demonstrate requirements are being met, is available at www.tpb.gov.au/recognised-professional-associations  

The TPB will consider all submissions and may undertake further consultation before finalising the information sheet exposure draft.

The exposure draft is available on the TPB website and the closing date for submissions is Friday 17 November 2017.

About the Tax Practitioners Board:

The Tax Practitioners Board regulates tax practitioners in order to protect consumers. The TPB aims to assure the community that tax practitioners meet appropriate standards of professional and ethical conduct.

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Tuesday, October 3, 2017