Numerous businesses located close to shopping centres, hospitals, or airports, will be adversely impacted by the Commissioner of Taxation’s recent changed opinion of what constitutes a commercial car parking facility for FBT purposes.
Under the FBT law, a car parking fringe benefit, other than an exempt benefit, is valued under the commercial parking station method, at the lowest all-day rate charged by any commercial car parking facility within a 1 km radius of the employer provided carpark. Note that car parking benefits may be exempt from FBT for qualifying small businesses.
Previously, the Commissioner’s public interpretation of a “commercial parking facility” excluded parking facilities having a primary purpose other than providing all-day parking – Taxation Ruling TR 96/26 (now withdrawn). Shopping centres, hospitals and airports were thus mostly excluded.
On 16 June 2021, the Commissioner released his ruling, TR 2021/2 (replacing TR 96/26) with the revised view that certain parking facilities previously excluded (e.g. shopping centres, hospitals and airports) would now meet the definition of a commercial parking facility.
As a result, a car parking fringe benefit may arise for those employers within 1 km of a shopping centre, hospital or airport, who provide carparking to their employees either at their own premises or at other premises. Importantly however, given he has altered his previous view, the Commissioner also states this changed view will take effect in respect of car parking benefits provided on or after 1 April 2022 (ie the 2023 FBT year).
We suggest potentially affected businesses review the FBT implications that may arise under the ATO’s current view of a commercial parking station within TR 2021/2 and discuss the potential FBT obligations with us.
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