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Legislation and supporting material

The Legal Database contains the principal and amending Acts which govern Commonwealth taxation law, as well as the associated regulations and extrinsic material (explanatory memoranda and second reading speeches). The database also contains Bills and extrinsic material concerning Business Tax Reform measures when they are before parliament.

Go to Principal Legislation & Regulations
Go to Amending Legislation
Go to Extrinsic Material

Public Rulings, Determinations and Bulletins

Public Rulings and Determinations set out the Commissioner's opinion as to the way in which 'a tax law' applies to:

  • a person in relation to a class of arrangements;
  • a class of persons in relation to an arrangement; or
  • a class of persons in relation to a class of arrangements.

For more information see:

  • Taxation Ruling TR 2006/10 (concerning the public rulings system),
  • GST Ruling GSTR 1999/1 (concerning the GST Rulings system),
  • Product Ruling PR 2007/71 (concerning the Product Rulings system),
  • Class Ruling CR 2001/1 (concerning the Class Rulings system),
  • Self Managed Superannuation Funds Product Ruling SMSFPR 2009/1 (concerning the Self Managed Superannuation Funds Product Rulings system) and
  • Law Administration Practice Statement PS LA 2008/3 (concerning provision of written advice by the ATO).

Go to Public Rulings, Determinations and Bulletins


Legislative Determinations

Legislative Determinations are instruments issued by the Commissioner (or delegate) pursuant to a particular provision of an Act. Legislative Determinations, being a form of subordinate legislation, are law. The Legal Database currently contains Legislative Determinations relating to Excise, Goods and Services Tax, Income Tax and the Pay As You Go system.

Go to Legislative Determinations
Go to Extrinsic Material


ATO Interpretative Decisions

An ATO Interpretative Decision (ATO ID) is a summary of a decision on an interpretative issue and is indicative of the Commissioner's view on the interpretation of the law on that particular issue. ATO IDs are produced to assist ATO officers to apply the law consistently and accurately to particular factual situations.

For more information see Law Administration Practice Statement PS LA 2001/8

Go to ATO Interpretative Decisions


Case Decision Summaries

Case Decision Summaries (CDSs) are summaries of decisions on ATO interpretative issues and were once used as a research tool by ATO officers. CDSs have now been replaced by ATO Interpretative Decisions (ATO IDs) as summaries of decisions on interpretative issues. A current ATO ID sets out the indicative ATO view on an interpretative issue. Accordingly all CDSs have been withdrawn They appear here for historical purposes only. Relevant CDSs have been converted to ATO IDs.

Go to Case Decision Summaries


Law Administration Practice Statements

Law Administration Practice Statements are instructions to Tax Office staff. They provide direction/assistance to staff on the approaches to be taken in performing duties involving the application of the laws administered by the Commissioner.

For more information see Law Administration Practice Statement PS LA 1998/1

Go to Law Administration Practice Statements


Taxpayer Alerts

Taxpayer alerts are intended to be an early warning of our concerns about significant and emerging potential aggressive tax planning issues or arrangements that the ATO has under risk assessment.

Visit the ATO Aggressive Tax Planning site for more information.

Go to Taxpayer Alerts


Case Law

The Legal Database contains published case judgments from Australian courts which involve taxation matters.

Go to Case Judgments


Decision Impact Statements

Decision Impact Statements are succinct statements of the Commissioner's response to significant cases decided by the courts or tribunal. They provide the details of the case including the implication of the decision and whether any of our Public Rulings, Determinations, and Interpretative Decisions will need to be amended.

Go to Decision Impact Statements


ATO Policy Papers

The Tax Office prosecution policy has been revised and reissued as a Corporate Management Practice Statement. It is available on www.ato.gov.au

The ATO Receivables Policy has been reissued as Law Administration Practice Statements. Two remaining chapters of the policy are available for the use of taxpayers, their advisers and ATO staff, to ensure there is a common understanding of the ATO's approach to the collection of GST and consolidated group liabilities.

The NTER Manual prescribes the administrative and technical features of the National Tax equivalent Regime, which is an intergovernmental arrangement that notionally applies federal income tax laws to nominated state and territory government businesses.


Superannuation Circulars

Superannuation circulars explain the various legislative and regulative requirements which apply to the operation of self managed superannuation funds under the Superannuation Industry Supervisions Act and associated regulations.

Go to Superannuation Circulars


Index of Historical Documents

The Index of Historical Documents provides references to technical rulings, guidelines, instructions, interpretations of the law and details of a number of procedures and practices followed within the Australian Taxation Office.

More information about the index
Go to the Index of Historical Documents


Schedule of Documents Containing Precedential ATO Views

A precedential ATO view is the settled ATO view of the law in relation to a particular interpretative issue. This schedule lists sources of the precedential ATO view as noted in paragraph 5 of PS LA 2003/3. In addition to the sources of the precedential ATO view listed in this practice statement, the documents listed in this schedule can be used as valid sources of the precedential ATO view. All entries within the schedule are hyperlinked to provide on-line access to these documents.

Go to the Schedule


Technical Discussion Papers

The purpose of these papers is to facilitate consultation between the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and the community as part of the process of developing a potential ATO view on the application of the law. The papers are prepared solely for the purpose of obtaining comments from interested parties, are preliminary in nature and should not be taken as representing either a precedential ATO view or that the ATO will take a particular view.

Go to Technical Discussion Papers

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