• Service: Tax, Corporate Tax, Indirect Tax
  • Industry: Transport & Logistics, Asia Business, China
  • Type: Business and industry issue, Regulatory update
  • Date: 2/10/2012

Tax in Focus: High Court decision in FCT v Qantas 

On 2 October 2012, the High Court of Australia held that Qantas Airways Limited is liable for goods and services tax (GST) in respect of bookings made by its customers in circumstances where the customers did not travel on the flights which had been booked. The decision highlights difficulties faced by taxpayers when seeking to apply the fundamental provisions of the GST Act.
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Key insights

  • Businesses may need to review decisions to treat receipts as not being consideration for any supply or where they have determined the GST treatment of the relevant transaction by reference to the substance of the transaction.
  • The decision is likely to require changes to a number of existing public rulings to clarify the Commissioner's position as to what the relevant taxable supply is and how that supply should be identified.
  • If taxpayers account for GST and that GST is found not to be payable, will the proposed introduction of Division 36 of the GST Act prevent taxpayers seeking a refund of any GST paid?


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