The association has called for the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB) to re-assess its educational requirements of the Tax Agent Services Regulations 2009.
In a letter to Treasury, CA ANZ has specifically called out the TPB’s academic requirements to register as a tax agent, which includes completing an approved course in commercial law, involving three board-approved core units.
“The modern commercial law component in university accounting degrees now and at the time of introduction of the TASA was two subjects, not three subjects, and as such the board’s view is an uplift in the commercial law requirements, as the bar has been lifted above even the CA program requirement,” CA ANZ said.
“The TPB’s views mean that CAs, who have met the educational requirements to have a Certificate of Public Practice (CPP) issued to them by our professional accounting body to provide tax services to the public, are not treated as eligible to register.”
Adding insult to injury
Further, CA ANZ takes issue with the way registration as a BAS agent is being handled.
The association believes the scope of the education requirement to register as a BAS agent is too narrow.
In fact, CA ANZ believes it is “insulting” to the CA designation.
“For the basic GST/BAS course, arguably, the TPB’s interpretation completely ignores the word ‘basic’ and requires a very specific, granular, detailed course on GST and BAS completion and form filling,” CA ANZ said.
“CA ANZ adopts the top-down approach… Therefore, a TPB view that is singularly focused and insistent upon the bottom-up technique is necessarily discriminatory against those whose educational philosophy and approach involves the top-down deductive technique.
“The outcome that CAs do not meet the course in basic GST/BAS taxation principles requirement is insulting to our members, the CA designation, and our organisation, and an unacceptable proposition.”