Recent changes to the Duties Act in Queensland following the State budget make it much easier for farming families to transfer farmlands and farm business assets to other family members.

    Generally when property is transferred, stamp duty (transfer duty) is payable on the value of those assets. An exemption from duty has been available when farm assets are transferred but only to the extent it is a gift. Many farming families do not have much in the way of off farm assets and leave themselves with little or no financial security on retirement if they gift their property to their son or daughter. The alternative has been to pay transfer duty on any purchase price.
    With the recently announced changes, farm property can be transferred to family members free of duty even if a purchase price is payable.
    For example, a farming couple with a grazing property valued at $1.5 million can now sell it to their son and daughter-in-law for $1 million payable by annual instalments of $100,000 with no transfer duty applicable.
    Prior to the changes which commenced on 1 July this year, transfer duty of $38,025 would have been payable.
    For further information on these changes or on succession planning generally, please contact Mark Story, Partner and Accredited Succession Specialist or Brianna Hockey on 07 4153 0000.