How To Reduce Your ACC Costs Or ACC Premiums

Mortgage Link logoMost self-employed Kiwis think their own ACC costs are too high and that the ACC premiums are just another tax – and in many ways they are correct.

The Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) provides comprehensive, no-fault personal injury cover for all New Zealand residents and also to visitors to New Zealand, and acts in a similar way to Income Protection Insurance but covering only accidents.

There are ways to reduce your ACC premiums, but they are not very well advertised and therefore most people do not know they exist or know what discounts they might be entitled to.

For more information on how to make significant savings, click here.

Stuart Wills Half CroppedContact Stuart or Erica Wills at Mortgage Link today on (09) 839-2189, or go to, to discuss your potential to make significant savings.

Introducing Capital Gains Tax Into New Zealand

UHY Haines Norton Managing Director Grant Brownlee considers the implications of a Labour government introducing Capital Gains Tax.

We recently asked Labour’s Phil Twyford, MP for Te Atatu, whether Labour would introduce a Capital Gains Tax (CGT) if they are elected.  Phil indicated a CGT would be introduced within the first 100 days of their first term.

So what might a CGT look like in New Zealand?  To provide an answer to that question I thought it would be a good idea to look across the Tasman and pose a few questions to Bill Charlton, a Partner from UHY Haines Norton in Brisbane.

Bill Charlton, Managing Partner UHY Haines Norton Brisbane

Bill Charlton, Managing Partner UHY Haines Norton Brisbane, B. Bus, CA, Grad Dip Comm Com

Question 1: When CGT was introduced into Australia, what impact did it have on the property market?

When CGT was introduced, and in its first one or two years, it had very little influence on the property market at all.  There were two main reasons for this.  First, prior to the introduction of CGT, Australia already had a system of taxing property transactions where the property was sold within 12 months of its purchase.  This was deliberately done to eliminate any debate about whether a sale was of a revenue nature (and taxable) or of a capital nature (and not taxable).  So, short term property transactions were already caught in the tax net.  Investors were aware of this tax and had already taken it into account.  The CGT rules merely replaced these existing rules and CGT had no impact at all on short term sales. Read more

Staff News: February / March 2014

Sanjana baby Arnaav croppedCongratulations to Sanjana Govind, currently on maternity leave from our Audit department, who welcomed her gorgeous baby boy Arnaav on 10th January 2014.



Hema Wedding PhotoCongratulations also to Audit team member Hema Lallubhai, who married Deelan Sital on 19th January 2014 in a beautiful traditional Hindu wedding ceremony at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Temple in Avondale.



The Importance of Staff Induction

The start of a new year often coincides with firms hiring new staff members.  A key step when employing staff is to provide them with a formal and effective induction process.  Induction is the process whereby a new employee is introduced to their employer.

Depending on the size of the firm, induction can cover up to four levels:

  1. Induction into the firm
  2. Induction into the department
  3. Induction into the work team
  4. Induction into the job itself

Read more

IRD Compliance Focus For Small And Medium-Sized Enterprises

The IRD have confirmed that their current compliance focus for small and medium-sized entities includes the following:

  • Checking GST is repaid when business assets are used for private purposes.
  • Monitoring land transactions to make sure that GST is properly accounted for.
  • Assessing GST refund entitlements.
  • Checking employee tax codes are correct (IR330′s are available to determine the correct code to use).
  • Ensuring independent contractors are self-employed contractors and not employees.
  • Ensuring independent contractors are filing income tax returns and, where required, GST returns. The IRD is identifying the industries and professions where independent contractors are likely to be employed and reviewing compliance levels.


Farming In The Cloud

Mark FosterXero has just announced that it will be releasing its new “farming in the cloud” solution midway through the year.

The solution will allow farmers and their accountants to work on the same information and provide one central location for their key accounting and farm management tools.

A recent article written by Mike Peterson, Head of Beef + Lamb New Zealand, who is retiring this year, says that most farmers don’t understand what their balance sheet looks like or how cashflow requirements are going to be funded for any major farm development work. Read more

Taxing Matters: February / March 2014

Taxing Matters provides a summary of topical tax and business information relating to individuals and business.

Deductibility of Legal Fees   A deduction can be claimed for legal fees incurred in carrying on a business, including buying and selling rental properties, up to a total of $10,000 in any year regardless of whether the fees are of a capital nature.  Where legal fees are of a capital nature, and exceed $10,000, no deduction can be claimed.

Deductibility for Websites   The cost of creating a business website is capital expenditure and the costs should be capitalised and depreciated. The ongoing costs of maintaining or updating an existing business website are deductible when incurred. Read more

Market Wrap: February / March 2014

Craigs Investment Partners Logo.pngSimon Coulter of Craigs Investment Partners reviews the markets’ performance for the beginning of 2014.

While mixed, global economic data this year continues to point to a generally steady recovery. We have seen both the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) increase their estimates for global growth in 2014, UK unemployment has fallen faster than expected and government debt levels in Europe registered a decline for the first time since 2007.

Locally, New Zealand economic readings continue to exceed expectations. Our terms of trade remain high, the Canterbury rebuild is gaining momentum, unemployment is falling and consumer sentiment appears robust following the holiday trading period. The highly regarded Quarterly Survey of Business Opinion (QSBO) from the NZIER was released last month and it made for very favourable reading. The survey showed that in December businesses were the most optimistic they have been since June 1994, domestic trading activity is at its highest levels since March 2005 and reported hiring is at its highest level since December 2006. Read more

Agriculture News: February / March 2014


  • While dairy prices may be at an all-time high, spare a thought for Kaipara dairy farmers who are struggling with drought conditions worse than this time last year.  Some Kaipara dairy farmers are conceding that the season is already over.  They are drying off cows and are now faced with the high cost of palm kernel feed.
  • A Southland sheep and beef farmer is receiving international attention for the innovative “Two Hands” double bale grab he engineered and patented in an effort to shift bales more efficiently around his farm.  Paul Anderson now has manufacturing facilities in both the North and South Island producing the bale grabs, which can carry up to 4 bales at a time.  Paul is in the process of gaining an international patent, and is receiving enquiries from Australia and the United States.
  • On 22nd February, the 112th Helensville A&P Show was officially opened by the Rt Hon John Key.  The show featured a First World War theme to commemorate the centenary of the start of the conflict which ran from 1914 to 1918.  The show also set new standards of being a zero-waste event – funded in part by Auckland Council’s Waste Minimisation Innovation Fund – as well as aiming to be smoke-free.
  • Last year the North West Business Association was formed to represent the area running from Riverhead to Kaukapakapa.  The Association is proposing the introduction of a North West Business Improvement District (BID), to be determined by ballot in March, in a drive to boost economic development in the region.  Several information evenings have been held to allow business people to find out more about the project which will allow for the provision of funds and strategic planning in the district.  All business owners and commercial building owners in the targeted areas are eligible to vote in the ballot.  For more information go to


Festival of Education: 21-23 March 2014

Educators, students and their families, education organisations and community leaders will come together next month to celebrate and share educational successes and innovations.

Supported by ATEED, the Festival of Education will take place in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.  The free event is open to the public.  It will celebrate, showcase and share the innovations, successes and achievements that occur in the education sector every day.

The festival will comprise live performances from school children and students, symposia with world-leading educators, an interactive exhibition showcase representing all levels of the education sector, and lively chat room discussion.

There are still opportunities to register as an exhibitor or sponsor.

Venue: Viaduct Events Centre, Wynyard Quarter, Auckland
Date: Friday 21st – Sunday 23rd March
Cost: Free

Read more about this event at

Round the Bays: Sunday 9th March 2014

Sunday 9th March is this year’s annual Ports of Auckland Round the Bays run.  The event began in 1972 with 1,200 participants and has now grown to almost 40,000 registered runners.  For more information and to register, go to