Setting up an SMSF

How much super do I need to set up an SMSF?

There is no minimum amount required to set up an SMSF however very low balances may not be cost-effective. A low starting balance could trigger a review by the ATO preventing your SMSF from becoming registered.

You should compare your current super fund fees to the ongoing costs of an SMSF before making a decision. An SMSF enables you to combine your super balance with your partner/spouse.

Also read our blog article: How much super do you need for an SMSF?

Are you eligible to set up an SMSF?

You cannot be a trustee of an SMSF if you are a disqualified person.  A disqualified person includes:

+ persons who have at any time been convicted of an offence in respect of dishonest conduct;

+ persons against whom a civil penalty order was made; or

+ a person who is insolvent under administration (for example, an undischarged bankrupt). 

Who is responsible for the SMSF investments?

The trustees of the SMSF are responsible for the investments made by the fund. Unlike APRA regulated industry and retail super funds, members of an SMSF are not entitled to compensation if they are the victim of fraud or dishonest conduct by a third party.

How much time does an SMSF take to manage?

The amount of time it takes is dependant on the investment approach of the trustees. Investment research and regularly reviewing the SMSF investment strategy are the key activities required.

Administration time includes paying SMSF related fees and taxes when required, reviewing and signing financial statements and the SMSF annual tax return and providing the SMSF administrator with any information they need. For Most SMSFs with simple, listed investments this should take a maximum of 1-2 hours per year.

Where can I get advice on setting up an SMSF?

Stake SMSF does not provide advice on whether an SMSF is suitable for you. 

If you would like to receive personalised financial advice we recommend you seek out a licensed financial adviser to provide this advice. 

You can search for an SMSF Specialist Advisor (Profession: Financial Planner) via the SMSF Association here: https://smsfconnect.com/find-a-specialist

Can I set up an SMSF if I live overseas?

No, if you are currently living overseas, it is unlikely you will be able to set up an SMSF as the fund needs to be established in Australia and the ‘central management and control’ also needs to be in Australia.  More information is available on the ATO website here: Check if your fund is an Australian super fund

If you are an Australian resident and move overseas for an extended period of more than 5 years, this may also impact your ability to remain a member and trustee of your SMSF.  Seek specialist advice if you are in this situation. 

Who can be a member of my SMSF?

An SMSF may have up to four members however this may increase to six members in the future to accommodate larger family groups.

The majority of SMSFs have one or two members, where the two members are a couple.

The only key restriction is that one member of an SMSF cannot be an employee of another unless those members are related.

Where can I learn more about being a trustee of an SMSF?

The SMSF Association has some great content on their SMSF Connect website including a free learning course for SMSF trustees: https://smsfconnect.com/understanding-smsfs 

The ATO also lists approved SMSF education courses on its website here.

Setup Details

What is included in the Annual StakeSMSF fee?

The StakeSMSF annual fee of $770 includes:

+ All documents required to set up an SMSF;
+ ASIC company registration fee;
+ Registration of your new SMSF with the ATO;
+ Account, tax and audit fees;
+ 12 months Stake Black;

StakeSMSF annual fee does not include the ATO SMSF Supervisory Levy (paid when the SMSF lodges its first tax return) or the Annual Company Registration fee for the SMSF trustee company ($56 paid on the anniversary of the company being established).

The establishment costs are not tax-deductible inside the SMSF. However, the member can elect to claim a personal tax deduction for the setup costs they have paid if they choose not to have them reimbursed from the SMSF (note an ATO s290-170 form is required to claim a deduction).

What documents do I receive when my SMSF is set up?

The following are provided to a customer when we set up your SMSF:

+ SMSF trust deed (also known as a ‘Deed of Establishment’);

+ Trustee resolutions to establish the SMSF;

+ Trustee consents to act;

+ Membership applications;

+ ATO trustee declarations;

+ A special-purpose trustee company constitution;

+ Member resolutions for the trustee company;

+ Initial SMSF investment strategy.

+ Appointment of auditor minute

Why use a company as the SMSF trustee?

A special-purpose company trustee is always the best option compared to two individual trustees.

+ An SMSF can be established with a single individual as the sole member;

+ A company trustee allows the electronic signing of SMSF trust deeds;

+ A company trustee ensures all investments are legally separate from those of the members;

+ An SMSF with a company trustee can add/remove members of the fund without changing the name on all the accounts and investments.

Can I sign my SMSF trust deed electronically?


Although the temporary legal provisions in place (due to COVID-19) enable a company trustee to execute a trust deed expired on 21 March 2021, there are draft law changes that are expected to come into effect in mid-2021 which makes these temporary provisions permanent. The legal advice we’ve received has confirmed the validity of any SMSF trust deeds signed electronically between 21 March 2021 and when the relevant law changes come into effect.

Both the ATO who regulates SMSF and the institutions we work with accept the validity of electronically SMSF trust deeds; however, we can provide the unsigned PDF versions of your SMSF documents upon request if you decide to sign via wet ink handwritten signatures.

We utilise industry best practice that aligns with the Electronic Transactions Act 1999 including identifying each signatory, separate email address and multi-factor authentication.

What name can my SMSF have?

There are no major restrictions on SMSF names, and unlike company names, they do not need to be unique. From a practical perspective, we recommend the following when naming your SMSF:

+ The name is short – less than 18 characters total;

+ The name contains the word “Fund”;

+ Use “super fund” rather than “superannuation fund”;

+ The name contains your family name/surname

+ The name is not long, complex, offensive or will in any way trigger your SMSF registration to be reviewed by the ATO.

Do I need a personal Stake account before setting up an SMSF?

No. We use the details we have on file to set up your StakeSMSF and Stake account. 

Registering an SMSF with the ATO

How long before my SMSF is registered?

When an application is lodged to register an SMSF with the ATO the ABN in most cases will be issued instantly. The status of the SMSF will be “Election to be regulated is being processed”.

The ATO performs checks to approve the ABN registration for your SMSF. Assuming there are no items that require a manual review by the ATO, within 2-5 days the SMSF application should be approved and the Status changed on Super Fund Look Up to “Registered”.

In some cases, the ATO will flag an SMSF application for further review. This could be for a variety of reasons. Which this happens the ATO has 28 days (20 business days) to complete their review before you or your agent can contact them. The ATO will not accept enquiries on the status of the application during this time. After 28 days the ATO can be contacted and they will either resolve any issues to finalise the application or will extend their review.

The time it takes the ATO to issue the ABN (when it is not issued instantly) and to approve the registration of the SMSF is completely beyond the control of Stake SMSF and our nominated tax agent.

The ATO has additional information on ABN registration delays on their website: Registration application delays

How can I check the status of my SMSF on Super Fund Lookup?

You can view the status of your SMSF via Super Fund Lookup here by entering the name of your SMSF or ABN: https://superfundlookup.gov.au

What does ‘Election to be regulated is being processed’ mean?

When your SMSF is first issued its ABN, by default the status will be ‘Election to be regulated is being processed’.

This means although the ATO has issued an ABN and TFN for the SMSF, they’ve not approved the application. This approval, assuming that no issues are flagged with your application, normally takes 2-5 days however can extend to up to two months where the ATO needs to undertake further investigations.

The ATO will not provide information on an SMSF application until 28 days has passed (20 business days).

The impact of your SMSF registration having this status is that you cannot instruct your employer to pay contributions to your fund and you also cannot request a transfer of your existing superannuation to your SMSF.

In addition, most banks and institutions will not open or activate an account for your SMSF until the status is updated to ‘Registered’.

The ATO has contacted me about my SMSF registration – what do I do?

This happens a small percentage of the time and is not uncommon.  Sometimes the ATO will want to undertake a phone interview with you to help them assess your SMSF application. If this occurs with your application please contact us and arrange to speak to one of our SMSF specialists as we can talk to you about the possible questions they will ask.

We also suggest you familiarise yourself with the SMSF content on the ATO website and also look at the free learning information on the SMSF Association website: SMSF Connect

My SMSF registration has not been processed after 28 days what should I do?

Although we regularly monitor the ABN status of new SMSFs we’ve registered, we cannot follow up the ATO until after 28 days. If the 28 day period has passed, and the ABN either has not been issued or the status is still ‘Election to be regulated is being processed’ please contact us and we will follow up with the ATO on your behalf.

Sometimes delays simply occur due to volume and the ATO often re-allocates their team members to different areas within the ATO which can cause delays.

Items that could delay your SMSF registration being approved

The ATO has provided information on their website here in regards to things that could delay the registration of your SMSF: Registration application delays

Common reasons for delays could be:

  • Your SMSF has not completed the required pre-requisites to be registered (Not applicable with Stake SMSF as we take care of these items during the SMSF set up process)

  • The identities of the members and trustees of the SMSF cannot be confirmed (this can happen if there is a mismatch of names / TFNs / dates of birth/addresses)

    • TIP: Check via MyGov > ATO to ensure all your details with the ATO are up to date including names (e.g. if name changed), addresses etc.

  • The ATO believes one of the trustees are not able to run an SMSF within the rules this involves items such as:

    • History of insolvency or bankruptcy;

    • Criminal records relating to fraud or dishonesty;

    • You are already a member of an SMSF and/or there is a history of compliance issues with this other SMSF you’ve been associated with;

    • You have had previous late personal or business tax lodgements and payments (including for any business you are associated with);

    • Your superannuation balance and income level including whether you’ve recently been made redundant or currently not receiving business or employment income;

    • The ATO has information about identities that have been used fraudulently;

    • Your name is listed on the ATO disqualified trustees register. The ATO often will not release specific information in most cases on why your SMSF application is being delayed and will not accept any enquiries within the first 28 days after lodging your ABN application.

The ATO has declined my SMSF application – what do I do?

  • In the unlikely case of this occurring, the ATO will issue you with further information on why your application was declined and what options you have.

  • In some instances, you will be able to address the reasons and re-apply in the future. In other cases, you may be prohibited from re-applying to register an ABN.

Transferring super to an SMSF

How do I transfer my existing super to my new SMSF?

There are a few different methods to transfer monies from your existing superannuation account to your SMSF and they vary based on your current super fund:

  • Complete a paper-based transfer/withdrawal form provided by your existing super fund;

  • Complete a paper-based standard ATO form (Only use when transferring 100% of your balance)

  • Initiate a transfer request online via MyGov > ATO > Superannuation (further information here)

Visit the following to download the appropriate form for your superannuation fund: Super Transfer to SMSF

Your existing superannuation fund may enable you to email or upload the transfer request forms and supporting documents such as your identification (often needs to be certified) and a statement or confirmation of the SMSF bank account details. In most cases, your existing superannuation fund will require 100 points of ID such as your driver’s licence and passport.

Before deciding to transfer your entire super balance you need to check your insurance cover. The ASIC MoneySmart website specifically states:

“Before you leave a fund, check to see if you have any insurance through the fund. This might be life, total and permanent disability (TPD), and/or income protection insurance. If you change funds, you might not be able to get the same cover. Be particularly careful if you have a pre-existing medical condition or are aged 60 or over. If you’re not sure, get independent advice from a licensed financial adviser.”

We (via Stake) have partnered with AGI to provide you with a cost-effective replacement insurance option. To learn more visit the following: SMSF Insurance

Do I need to transfer all my super to my SMSF or can I keep an amount in my industry / retail super fund?

There is no requirement to transfer your entire super balance to your SMSF. Some people decide to keep a portion of their super in their existing fund separate from their SMSF for reasons such as:

  • Maintaining insurance cover under that super fund (Please note that minimum balances and regularly contributions may be required to keep the insurance cover active – check with your current super fund for their requirements);

  • Their employer provides additional benefits which are not transferrable to an SMSF such as contribution matching, contributions above the mandatory Superannuation Guarantee % or insurance cover paid by the employer through your super account;

  • There are specific investments the individual wishes to access via their other superannuation fund;

Can I transfer direct shares/stocks in my super account to my SMSF?

In general, you cannot transfer personally held investments to an SMSF, but one exception is listed shares/securities that are traded on a recognised stock exchange.  Shares and stocks held in member-directed or self-directed accounts inside an industry or retail super fund cannot be transferred to Stake.

With Stake SMSF you can request personally held stocks or ETFs are transferred to your SMSF account however you cannot transfer holdings out of your SMSF until you meet the preservation requirements (i.e. retirement).

Also, be aware that the market value at the time of transfer will also be counted as a contribution to your SMSF and count towards your contribution caps, and the transfer will trigger a capital gains tax event in your personal name. Seek independent tax and financial advice on the consequences of any transfers.

How long does it take for my current super fund to transfer to my SMSF?

Industry and retail super funds have up to 28 days upon receiving your application and required supporting identification documentation to process and pay your transfer. The actual time varies from 1 – 4 weeks depending on the superannuation fund. Larger funds with more members tend to be more efficient and more likely to pay the transfer electronically if you provide bank details of your SMSF.

From March – September 2021 all large superannuation funds must transition to paying transfer requests to SMSFs electronically via the SuperStream system. They can still request the same information and may require more details to confirm the BSB and account number of the SMSF bank account before making payment.

My super fund has sent me a cheque. How do I deposit it into my SMSF account?

Please contact us. We will provide deposit instructions.

SMSF Investment Strategy

What is an SMSF investment strategy?

An SMSF investment strategy is the core of your SMSF. It’s a written document outlining what your SMSF will invest in and why.

There are specific requirements each SMSF must include in their investment strategy document. Refer to the ATOs website for more information: Your SMSF Investment Strategy

How do I update my SMSF investment strategy?

When you establish an SMSF with us, we provide you with an initial investment strategy document for you to customise. You can download an editable version (.docx) here: SMSF investment strategy template

You can also create your own investment strategy document from scratch or by using a template.

Do I need to nominate percentages for my investment strategy?

No. Although it is common practice to identify the different asset classes your SMSF will invest in using a range and/or target percentages, there is no requirement to do this. If you decide to include a range of percentages for a particular asset class, then you need to review it at least annually to ensure your SMSF has invested within these ranges.

Is there an SMSF investment strategy template available?

You can download an editable version (.docx) here: SMSF investment strategy template

Note that Stake SMSF cannot provide a recommendation for a suitable investment strategy for your fund, we simply assist you to meet your compliance obligations for the SMSF.

Does my SMSF need to be diversified?

The regulations require SMSF trustees to consider diversification as well as risk, liquidity, ability to pay benefits and whether to hold insurance on behalf of members.


Is there a restriction on what percentage I can invest in each stock / ETF?

No. Provided the investments align with your SMSF investment strategy, there is no restriction.

Is there a minimum cash balance I must retain?

No, however you need to ensure you retain enough cash to cover any fees, insurance premiums and taxes payable.

Can I invest in ASX shares and ETFs with my Stake SMSF?

In general, the investments available to an SMSF are wide-ranging so nothing is preventing an SMSF from investing in ASX shares or any allowable investment. Investing outside of the Stake platform will incur additional fees as per our SMSF Fee Schedule

UPDATE: Stake will support ASX investment in Q4 of 2021. More information: hellostake.com/au/asx

Can I invest in bitcoin and cryptocurrency with Stake SMSF?

In general, the investments available to an SMSF are wide-ranging so nothing is preventing an SMSF from investing in crypto assets or any allowable investment. Investing outside of the Stake platform will incur additional fees as per our SMSF Fee Schedule.  Also, the administration time required by you as a trustee will increase.

Can I use a different bank account for my AUD SMSF cash wallet?

In general, the investments available to an SMSF are wide-ranging so nothing is preventing an SMSF from using a different bank account. Investing outside of the Stake platform (which includes a Macquarie Cash Account as the AUD wallet) will incur additional fees as per our SMSF Fee Schedule.

Also, the administration time required by you as a trustee will increase.

The Stake platform may use a different AUD cash wallet (or multi-currency wallets) in the future.

How does my SMSF move funds to USD?

Funds can be moved to USD via the Stake app or website. Under Add Funds, you will see a funding option which is “Bank Transfer” which enables seamless transfer from your Macquarie CMA to your Stake USD trading account.

Does each SMSF member have their own accounts and investments?

Each member has their own account balance however accounts and investments are pooled within the SMSF.

What happens if I invest outside of the Stake platform?

There is nothing preventing an SMSF from investing in any allowable asset. Investing outside of the Stake platform (which includes US stocks and a Macquarie Cash Account as the AUD wallet) will incur additional fees as per our SMSF Fee Schedule.

In addition, the administration time required by you as a trustee will increase.


Is it compulsory for my SMSF to hold life and disability insurance?

Although not compulsory SMSF trustees are required to consider whether they will obtain insurance for members and document that decision.

We (via Stake) have partnered with AGI to provide you with a cost-effective replacement insurance option. To learn more visit the following: SMSF Insurance

How can my SMSF obtain life and disability (TPD insurance)?

We (via Stake) have partnered with AGI to provide you with a cost-effective replacement insurance option. To learn more visit the following: SMSF Insurance. If you require further assistance with your insurance needs, we recommend you contact a licensed financial adviser.

You can also obtain insurance (life and TPD) via any retail insurance provided as long as you ensure the policy is correctly held in the name of the SMSF and the premiums are paid from the SMSF bank account.


How do I tell my employer to pay my super to my SMSF?

When your SMSF is set up we will provide you with the necessary details to give to your employer or payroll office for them to direct your future super contributions to your SMSF. You can also complete a Superannuation Standard Choice Form from the ATO (some employers require this).

Some employers may also require an ‘ESA Notification Letter’ which we can also provide on request.

How do I make personal contributions to my SMSF?

Personal contributions can be made by depositing money directly into your Macquarie CMA via direct deposit or Bpay. Any personal contributions are treated as non-concessional (no tax deduction) contributions by default unless we are informed otherwise.

You are responsible for tracking your contributions against your contribution caps.

How much can I contribute to my SMSF?

Contributions caps are currently (to 30 June 2021) $25,000 per financial year for concessional contributions and $100,000 per financial year for non-concessional contributions. These amounts increase to $27,500 and $110,000 respectively for the financial year ending 30 June 2022..

These caps are subject to indexation and catch-up and carry-forward contributions also are available. Refer to the ATO website for further information: Contributions and Rollovers

Please seek personal taxation or financial advice if you require further information.

How do I claim a deduction for personal contributions paid to my SMSF?

You need to make the payment to your SMSF cash account and complete an ATO s290-170 form before lodging your personal income tax return for the financial year in which you will claim a tax deduction. Send the completed form to smsf@hellostake.com.

What is the Electronic Service Address (ESA) for my SMSF?

  • smsfdataflow

The ESA is case sensitive and must be in lowercase in your employer’s payroll software. The ESA is also known as an ‘alias’ in some payroll systems.

What is an ESA notification letter?

Some employers may also require an ‘ESA Notification Letter’ which we can also provide on request. It is a template letter confirming the ESA as ‘smsfdataflow’ and also provides your bank details for payment.

Can I transfer US stocks under my personal account to my SMSF?

With Stake, you can request that personally held stocks or ETFs are transferred into your SMSF account however you cannot transfer holdings out of your SMSF until you meet the preservation requirements (i.e. retirement). 

Also, be aware that the market value at the time of transfer will also be counted as a contribution to your SMSF and count towards your contribution caps, and the transfer will trigger a capital gains tax event in your personal name. Seek independent tax and financial advice on the consequences of any transfers.

How can I check the contributions paid to my SMSF?

Tracking your contributions against your contribution caps is your responsibility. You can see contribution transactions to your SMSF via your SMSF cash account.

SMSF Expenses and Fees

How much are the Stake SMSF fees?

Please refer to our SMSF Fee Schedule. Please note that customers who joined during our SMSF beta period may receive discounted fees that were only applicable for that period. All Stake SMSF fees are in AUD and include GST.

What Government fees does an SMSF have to pay?

All SMSFs must pay an annual supervisory levy of $259 when the SMSF lodges its tax return. The amount of the levy is added to the amount of tax payable. The first year the SMSF lodges a tax return it must pay two years of the levy – $518 – as the ATO requires the levy to be received in advance.

When an SMSF uses a company trustee there is a $56 annual fee payable to ASIC to keep the company registered.

How and when are my SMSF fees paid?

All SMSF related fees must be paid from the SMSF cash account. The annual ongoing Stake SMSF administration fees are deducted from your SMSF cash account either when the prior year SMSF accounts and returns are completed or on the anniversary date of your fund (whichever occurs first).

When is a refund available for Stake SMSF fees?

Please refer to our Refund Policy for further information.

Can my SMSF pay for a Stake Black subscription?

Yes. All Stake SMSF customers get 1 year of Stake Black as part of their SMSF upfront fee.

Can my SMSF pay for investment or stock research subscriptions?

Yes, however, you must ensure the expense is directly connected to the management of your SMSF portfolio and that you can obtain a tax invoice in the name of your SMSF for the subscription.  If you are unsure, please contact us before paying for a subscription from your SMSF.

Can my SMSF pay me for managing my investment portfolio?

No. SMSFs cannot pay their trustees for carrying out their duties which includes the management of their SMSF portfolios.

Can my SMSF claim a tax deduction for the Stake FX fees?

No. The nature of these fees (FX spread) means that they are not tax-deductible. They are simply absorbed into the currency conversion.

This question has been answered in further detail by the ATO here: Forex Fee Expense Claim, specifically: “Even though there may be an identifiable component of the transaction amount that is clearly attributable to a bank (FX) fee, the legal nature of this transaction does not involve a bank (FX) fee. You also have to account for any gains or losses on the basis that there is no bank(FX) fee.”

Can my SMSF pay for insurance premiums for me?

Yes, the SMSF can pay for life and TPD insurance for all members of the SMSF.


Do I need to use Sharesight for my SMSF portfolio?

With all Stake SMSF customers, we will take care of the reporting after the end of the financial year for their SMSF. This includes calculating any capital gains/losses on your Stake portfolio in Australian dollars as well as recording all dividends and tax credits. We need to undertake this reporting to accurately prepare the SMSF accounts.

If you want to track your SMSF portfolio before the end of the financial or use other financial reporting and tracking tools that is entirely up to you, but there is no requirement to do so.

What reports are available for my SMSF?

After your SMSF end of year financial accounts are prepared, a wide range of investment, tax and accounting reports will be available.

We have plans to build out more comprehensive ‘live’ reporting for your SMSF portfolio as well as integrations to SMSF accounting software in the future.

What are the reporting obligations for my SMSF?

Every year your SMSF needs to prepare financial statements, member statements, and income tax return and have an independent audit completed. Stake SMSF takes care of all these items. All you need to do is review the statements, electronically sign off and pay any tax liability by the due date.

What happens if I set up my SMSF but do not transfer any super to it?

An SMSF only has a requirement to lodge when it has assets.

If for some reason your SMSF is set up and registered, but never receives any contributions or transfers, it will not be liable to lodge an income tax return or have any other reporting obligations for the first financial year. The ATO needs to be notified and provided with evidence of the SMSF receiving assets (e.g. a bank statement) in the second financial year – assuming it becomes active in year two.

If the SMSF never becomes active, it’s recommended that the SMSF be de-registered (it can always be re-registered in the future). If this situation applies please contact us to discuss it.

Can I do my SMSF financial statements and taxes myself?

From a practical perspective: No. You would need to be a registered tax agent and have specialist accounting knowledge to accurately and compliantly complete and lodge the necessary reporting requirements.

How can I check my realised or unrealised gains?

At this stage you will need to track these yourself via an external reporting system to keep our entry-level administration fee as low as possible, we will only be providing reports after the end of the financial year.

We have plans to build more detailed up to date reporting in the future.


How does the taxation of an SMSF work?

All income including concessional contributions (which includes employer contributions and personal contributions you claim a tax deduction for) is taxed at 15%. Capital gains are also taxed at 15% however the general CGT discount reduces this by 1/3rd which makes the capital gains on investments held for 12+ months 10%.

Is 15% tax taken from my contributions?

No. Unlike industry or retail super funds, an SMSF does not automatically take 15% tax on employer contributions at the time they are made. Your SMSF still has to pay 15% tax on the contributions, but the tax is assessed when the annual tax return is prepared after the end of the financial year.

How often does my SMSF have to pay tax?

Most SMSFs will only have to pay income tax once per year. Tax is payable when the SMSF lodges its annual tax return. When an SMSF has tax payable for one financial year, the following financial year it’s likely Pay-As-You-Go (PAYG) Instalments will be required in the next financial year. This is basically tax paid in advance based on the ATO’s estimate of your tax liability.

PAYG Instalments are paid quarterly however where the estimated annual tax is $8,000 or less you can elect to pay them annually by the 21st of October each year (i.e. the October after the financial year – which would be 21 October 2022 for the financial year ending 30 June 2022). Paying annually means your SMSF retains the cash in its account for longer.

How does Capital Gains Tax work with an SMSF?

Capital gains are also taxed at 15% however the general CGT discount reduces this by 1/3rd which makes the capital gains on investments held for 12+ months 10%. By default, our SMSF accounting system will default any capital gains calculation to the lowest gain amount based on the specific cost base of parcels of shares/stocks are available.

How is the FOREX gains or losses taxed with an SMSF?

Any capital gains or losses will automatically be converted into Australian dollars. There is no need for it to be split between a FOREX gain/loss and CGT gain/loss.

By default, the $250,000 balance election will be applied to all SMSFs meaning any FOREX gains/losses on cash are disregarded. Refer to the ATO in regards to how this election works.

How are US dividends taxed with an SMSF?

Stake will automatically prepare a W-8BEN-E form for your SMSF account.  This reduces the withholding tax on US dividends from 30% to 15%.

The 15% withholding tax is available as a non-refundable foreign tax credit which will offset the Australian tax on dividend income (assuming your SMSF is in the accumulation phase). 

Should my SMSF be registered for GST?

Because with Stake SMSF there will not be very much, GST paid, in most cases, it will not be worthwhile to register an SMSF for GST, however, this can be reviewed if your SMSF is incurring a significant amount of GST on expenses or transactions.

When does my SMSF need to lodge its tax return?

First-year SMSF returns for new funds are due by the 28th of February. Second and subsequent year SMSF returns are due by the 15th of May.

Maintaining your SMSF

How do I add a member to my existing SMSF?

Adding a member requires the individual to complete a member application and ATO Trustee Declaration for the SMSF and some other relevant minutes and declarations. Any new members also need to be added as directors to the SMSF trustee company. The ATO also needs to be updated and it can take up to 28 days before the new members can elect to transfer existing super to the SMSF.

Please contact us to confirm the information required and the fee applicable to add a new member.

How do I provide a binding death benefit nomination for my SMSF?

Contact us to obtain a binding death benefit nomination template. Please note legal advice should seek specifically to your situation before completing a BDBN.

What is the process to close/shut down my SMSF?

To wind up an SMSF all investments must be sold to cash and the final accounts, tax return and audit prepared for the fund. Any fees and taxes must be paid in advance.

Your final member balances are calculated and transfer forms prepared and sent to your chosen SMSF with payment.

What happens to my SMSF if I move overseas?

If you permanently move overseas or move overseas for an extended period (typically 2 or more years, although this is soon increasing to 5 years) you will no longer be eligible to be a trustee of an SMSF.

You can appoint someone as your Enduring Power of Attorney to take over your role as trustee (or director of the trustee company of the fund) while you remain a member, however, the person(s) appointed as trustees are in control of the fund – NOT you as the member.

We recommend you seek specialist advice specific to your personal situation.

About Stake SMSF

Who owns Stake SMSF?

Stake SMSF is owned by Stakeshop Pty Ltd.

Who is the tax agent for Stake SMSF?

Stake SMSF has initially appointed Grow SMSF Pty Ltd (Tax Agent Number 26057627) to act as the tax agent for all SMSF customers. Grow SMSF Pty Ltd is owned and controlled by Kris Kitto who is the Stake SMSF Head of Product.

Who is the independent SMSF auditor for Stake SMSF customers?

Stake SMSF has initially appointed Richard Smith of ASF Audits (SMSF Auditor Number 100013090) as the independent SMSF auditor for all SMSF customers.

Does Stake provide SMSF advice?

Stake SMSF cannot provide personal financial advice on SMSF related matters. Please refer to our advice disclaimer. Any information provided to you by Stake SMSF is provided in the context of assisting you to meet your compliance obligations related to your SMSF only.

How do I make a complaint?

Please contact us by emailing smsf@hellostake.com and provide as much information as possible to assist us in resolving your complaint.

How do I transfer my SMSF to another accountant or SMSF provider?

If you decide to engage a different provider to assist you in managing your SMSF you need to notify us in writing that you are cancelling our service as per our SMSF Administration Terms and Conditions.

We will provide any relevant records and documents to either you or your new nominated provider (electronically). Certain internally generated files, file notes and working papers will remain our property. We also have certain legal and compliance requirements to keep records relating to your SMSF after your relationship with us has ceased.