The TPB is currently reviewing its CPE policy, proposing to raise the minimum CPE hours requirement to 40 hours each year across the board for all tax practitioners, including BAS agents.
Specifically for BAS agents, the proposed change will mean that the current 45 CPE hours requirement over a three-year period will be replaced with a 40 hours requirement each year.
The Institute of Certified Bookkeepers executive director Matthew Addison believes the TPB’s approach does not factor in the different services provided between tax and BAS agents.
“Forty hours per year fixed for all tax practitioners is unreasonable and unfair,” Mr Addison told Accountants Daily.
“A tax agent who provides full and complete service provision in all tax areas should have a requirement to be up to date and competent in all tax areas or [for] people who are to supervise the provision of each area.
“[But] practitioners who provide fewer services [such as] BAS agents, who do not do CGT, FBT, income tax, should not be required to do the same amount of CPE in their lesser areas.”
The proposed change comes as the TPB seeks to simplify regulatory compliance and align more closely with the Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Board’s (FASEA) requirements, which currently stand at 40 hours each year.
The regulator also believes the change will bring it in line with the requirements of the major accounting bodies, which currently require a minimum of 120 hours over three years.
The TPB has also put forward the idea of increasing the current six-year record-keeping requirement for CPE records to seven years.
The TPB is currently seeking feedback on the discussion paper and its proposed changes before publishing exposure draft documents that will be subject to a separate consultation period.
The discussion paper can be viewed in full here, with the closing date for submissions being 18 March.
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.