FBT and hybrid working arrangements

Post the pandemic, many workplaces have shifted from fully remote, to a combination of remote and in-office work. To keep everyone productive, many employers have provided employees with work-related items such as laptops and mobile phones.

Providing these devices shouldn’t trigger an FBT liability as long they are primarily used for work purposes. Where multiple similar items have been provided during the FBT year, the situation becomes more complex unless your business is a small business (has an aggregated turnover of less than $50m). If an FBT exemption isn’t available, it is often worth considering whether the FBT liability on these items could be reduced by the employee purchasing the item themselves and claiming a once-only deduction in their personal return.

On those days the employees do work in the office, a controversial ruling from the ATO has expanded the scope of the FBT rules dealing with car parking benefits meaning that more employers will be considered to be providing car parking benefits to staff.  The ruling expands the definition of what constitutes a commercial parking station. It can now include parking stations that charge penalty rates for all-day parking to the public, such as those normally located in shopping centres.  Where an employer provides:

  • Car parking facilities for employees within 1km of a commercial parking station, and
  • That commercial car park charges more than the car parking threshold ($9.72 for the year ended 31 March 2023)

A taxable car parking fringe benefit will normally arise unless the employer is a small business and able to access the car parking exemption.

If you have any questions, please contact the team at Cotchy today!

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