Commissioner of Taxation: Notice of lifestyle assets data-matching program

ATO will acquire lifestyle assets data from insurance policies for the assets where the value is equal to or exceeds nominated thresholds

Written on 21 July, 2021
Tanaya Das

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has indicated that it will acquire lifestyle assets data from insurance policies for 2020-21 through to 2022-23 for the following assets where the value is equal to or exceeds nominated thresholds.

Asset class                                                             Minimum asset value threshold
Marine vessels                                                      $100,000
Motor vehicles including caravans                    $65,000
Thoroughbred horses                                         $65,000
Fine art                                                                   $100,000 per item
Aircraft                                                                   $150,000

The data items include:
■ Client identification details (names, addresses, phone numbers, dates of birth, Australian business number, email address)
■ Policy details (policy number, policy inception date, start date of current policy, end date of current policy, total value insured, purchase price of the property insured, registration or identification number of the property, insurance category, policy cost, description of the property insured, primary use type).

The ATO estimates that records relating to approximately 300,000 individuals will be obtained each financial year. The data will be acquired and matched improve ATO’s compliance risk profiling of taxpayers and provide a holistic view of their assets and accumulated wealth. The lifestyle assets data-matching program will allow ATO to identify and address a number of taxation risks, including:
■ taxpayers accumulating or improving assets with insufficient income reported in their tax returns to show the financial means to pay for them
■ income tax and capital gains tax (CGT) – taxpayers disposing of assets and not declaring the revenue and/or capital gains on those disposals
■ goods and services tax (GST) – taxpayers may be purchasing assets for personal use through their business or related entities and claiming GST credits they are not entitled to
■ fringe benefits tax (FBT) – taxpayers may be purchasing assets through their business entities with no apparent nexus with their business activities, but rather applying those assets to the personal enjoyment of an associate or employee giving rise to a fringe benefits tax liability
■ self-managed super funds (SMSFs) may be acquiring assets but applying them to the benefit of the fund’s trustee or beneficiaries.

A document describing this program is available on the ATO website.