The answer is 'sometimes' but you need to be proactive. Larger companies tend to spend more on advice to not only identify current opportunities but to understand the tax impact when acquiring new businesses, selling assets, structuring or restructuring. We've seen many scenarios where businesses seek advice on tax issues once contracts have been signed – at the tidy up stage. It's too late at this stage to improve the tax position or unwind a problem.
- Understand what's available to you – concessions exist for small business entities and other entities if you know where to look. Often business just doesn't have the time or feel the need to invest to explore anything beyond the compliance basics.
- Get your structures right – a lot of companies fall into the trap of looking at their structure once they have achieved a certain level of growth or decide it's time to make significant changes – like bringing in investors or selling part of the business. By this time the cost of changing structure is prohibitive. If you put a structure in place at the start that creates flexibility and tax efficiency, yes it will cost a few more dollars but you will enjoy the tax benefits as you grow plus your structure will accommodate change as your business builds out.
- Ensure that income and profits flow effectively – this is a follow on from structure. Once you have the right structure you can optimise the tax efficiency of how income flows to you providing you plan this in advance.