News 25.01.17

CHANGES TO THE GST LAW AFFECTING NON-RESIDENT CAST AND CREW



There have been some significant changes to how Australian GST impacts on non-Australian cast and crew who provide services in Australia.

Louise Houston, Executive Director, Tax from Warner Bros. Entertainment Australia Pty Ltd, has advised that the practice of “reverse-charging” the GST obligations of non-resident cast and crew who contract through loan-outs or as independent contractors will no longer be the appropriate treatment.

Louise advises that from 1 October 2016 any non-resident loan-out or contractor who is in Australia for more that 183 days in any 12 month period will most likely need to register for GST.  “Division 83 reverse-charging can no longer be used in these circumstances.  It may be possible to treat the supply by the non-resident loan-out or contractor as GST-free, but specific advice will need to be sought depending on the production structure and the entities involved” says Louise.

For non-resident cast and crew loan-outs who are present in Australia for less than 183 days in a 12 month period, Louise notes that the changes to the GST law mean in most cases they will be entirely outside the Australian GST net, and reverse-charging becomes irrelevant.

Louise stresses that productions and inbound cast and crew will need to take their own specific advice on these matters.  “Reverse-charging wasn’t the easiest of concepts, but the old rules had the advantage of being able to be applied pretty much across the board to all non-resident cast and crew loan-outs coming to Australia.   In contrast the application of the rules applying from 1 October 2016 will need to be separately considered for each production and for each non-resident loan-out performing services in Australia.”

For more information contact Nick Herd, Ausfilm’s Head of Policy & Research.