Former big 4 principal appointed as new Inspector-General of Taxation


A former big four principal and top-tier tax lawyer has been appointed as the new Inspector-General of Taxation for a five-year term.

Promoted by Jotham Lian 2 minute read

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has announced the appointment of Karen Payne as the new full-time Inspector-General of Taxation, taking over from former IGT Ali Noroozi, who departed the role on 6 November 2018 after 10 years at the helm.

She has been appointed for a five-year period from 6 May 2019.

Ms Payne, the inaugural chief executive of the Board of Taxation and a board member, was a former tax partner at law firm Minter Ellison, where she specialised in corporate and international tax, with extensive experience managing complex tax-related matters across the financial services, property, mining, energy and utilities sectors.

She also spent nine years at EY as a principal in the big four firm.

Ms Payne is a solicitor, Chartered Tax Adviser and member of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand. She holds a master’s degree in commerce, legal studies and taxation; a bachelor’s degree in laws; and a bachelor’s degree in commerce, accounting, finance and systems from the University of New South Wales.

She is also a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Australian Reinsurance Pool Corporation.

“Ms Payne will bring substantial private practice and public service experience to the role of Inspector-General,” Mr Frydenberg said.

“This appointment will continue the high level of skills and experience available to the office of IGT to help improve the administration of the tax laws for the benefit of all taxpayers.”

Mr Frydenberg also thanked acting IGT Andrew McLoughlin for his contribution.

The IGT recently released its long-awaited Future of the Tax Profession report, with nine recommendations comprising of 28 parts directed towards the government, the ATO and the Tax Practitioners Board.

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Jotham Lian

Jotham Lian


Jotham Lian is the editor of Accountants Daily, the leading source of breaking news, analysis and insight for Australian accounting professionals.

Before joining the team in 2017, Jotham wrote for a range of national mastheads including the Sydney Morning Herald, and Channel NewsAsia.

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