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Following the recent tribunal ruling in New South Wales of Thomas and Naaz Pty Ltd v Chief Commissioner of State Revenue, State Revenue Authorities across Australia have indicated that they intend on increasing investigations into payroll tax non-compliance by General Practitioners (GP). Whilst Revenue Authorities may be targeting GP clinics, these laws also apply to other businesses that engage contractors, including professional consultants and trades people. Why are GP clinics being targeted GPs can operate under a variety of different business models. The structure considered in Thomas and Naaz Pty Ltd is a common example. It involves GPs working under a service agreement with a medical practice. In this instance, the medical practice engages receptionists, nurses, and other support staff. The medical...

Legislation has been passed to amend the provisions of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) and the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) to enhance protections for individuals and small businesses against unfair contractual terms. An unfair contract term is a clause which causes a significant imbalance between the parties to a standard form contract, is not reasonably necessary to protect the legitimate interests of the party imposing it and causes a detriment to the other party if relied upon. Whilst protections against unfair terms already exist under the ACL, prior to these amendments there were no financial penalties imposed on the party that relied on them. Practically speaking, this meant an aggrieved party would have to apply to the Courts to have the unfair...