ATO issues ruling on “charities”

The ATO has issued TR 2011/4 ‘Income tax and fringe benefits tax: charities’ which sets out the Commissioner’s views on the meaning of ‘charitable’ in the terms of ‘charitable institution’ wherever those terms are used in the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 (Cth), the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 (Cth) and the Fringe Benefits Tax Assessment Act 1986 (Cth).  The ruling is very extensive and runs to some 106 pages!

While the ruling does not expressly say that it deals with the term ‘charitable institution’ in the GST Act (e.g., see subdivision 38-G Activities of charitable institutions etc), the term ‘charitable institution’ is not defined in the GST Act and one would expect that the views stated in the ruling would also be relevant in the GST context.

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