The peak SMSF organisation, the SMSF Professionals’ Association of Australia’s (SPAA), has launched a new SMSF Trustee Education Program.
The complimentary, online program, developed to assist trustees better understand their responsibilities, has been approved as a recognised SMSF trustee program under the Australian Taxation Office’s (ATO) new trustee penalty regime.
SPAA’s Head of Education Services Liz Ward says: “What this simply means is that when the ATO directs a trustee to complete a SMSF education program after reviewing their SMSF, the SPAA Trustee Education Program is on its approved list.
“What’s also important for trustees to understand is that they can do the SPAA trustee education program without a directive from the ATO – and SPAA urges them to do so because the course, which is split into eight modules, offers critical insights into their obligations as trustees.”
Ward says the course, a SPAA initiative to help build integrity in the SMSF sector, is designed specifically with trustees in mind, addressing their most important questions. “What I need to know, what I can and can’t do with my SMSF and, most importantly, where can I go to for help when I need it?
“Each module has ‘check your knowledge’ questions to help trustees identify what they have learnt and, on successfully completing the program, they are issued with a SPAA Completion Certificate.
“The program is also a great exercise for individuals who are considering establishing an SMSF, giving them a good foundation in all aspects of SMSFs.
“Anyone thinking of starting an SMSF and does the online course will be able to sign the ATO’s mandatory trustee declaration form, confident they understand their role and responsibilities.
“A healthy SMSF sector needs competent participants; it is SMSF trustees, using their own knowledge and skills, combined with their SMSF professional support team, which underpins a sustainable SMSF sector.
“It is very important that trustees, who are taking control of their retirement savings, to also fully understand their responsibilities and avoid any risk of not complying with all regulations – and this course is designed as a good starting point for that knowledge quest,” she says.
The SMSF Professionals’ Association of Australia (SPAA) is the authoritative voice for the self-managed superannuation fund (SMSF) sector. SPAA, which represents professionals providing a range of services across various disciplines in the complex area of SMSFs, is an advocate for the highest professional standards and competence to ensure SMSF trustees always receive the best possible advice.
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