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From 1 July 2015, foreign purchasers of residential property are liable to pay an amount of duty in addition to the general land transfer duty.

If you buy or acquire any land in Victoria you must use our digital duties form. This form must be completed for all land acquisitions, even if the transaction is exempt from duty, the purchaser is not a foreign purchaser or the property is not residential property.

All vendor and purchaser representatives must be registered for Duties Online (DOL) to process the digital duties form. Alternatively, self-represented parties must register and lodge via our public system.

General questions

  1. Who is a foreign purchaser?
  2. How is the total duty payable calculated when a foreign purchaser buys residential property?
  3. How is additional duty calculated if an exemption applies?
  4. How is additional duty calculated if a concession applies?
  5. What is the date of the contract - the date the vendor signs the contract or the date the purchaser signs the contract?
  6. Does the additional duty apply to the GST-inclusive purchase price?
  7. How does the additional duty apply where there are multiple transferees to a transaction?
  8. Does the additional duty apply to contracts entered into before 1 July 2015 that complete after 1 July 2015?
  9. What is the rate of additional duty?

Nominations and sub-sales

  1. Will additional duty apply in a sub-sale transaction where the contract and the nomination were both executed before 1 July 2015?
  2. Will additional duty apply where a foreign purchaser is nominated under a contract for the sale of residential property entered into before 1 July 2015 and the nomination is executed on or after 1 July 2015?
  3. What rate of additional duty applies where a foreign purchaser is nominated under a contract for sale of residential property entered into on or after 1 July 2015 but before 1 July 2016 and the nomination is executed on or after 1 July 2016?

Residency

  1. Does additional duty apply to a New Zealand citizen with a Subclass 444 Visa who is currently working overseas?
  2. Does a person have to attach a copy of their passport to their transfer documents when submitting to the State Revenue Office?
  3. If a person has applied for, but not yet been advised they are entitled to, a visa within the meaning of s30(1) of the Migration Act 1958 (Cth), is that person still a foreign natural person?
  4. If a foreign natural person buys a residential property together with an Australian-owned corporation, how is additional duty calculated?

Residential property

  1. If a property is capable of being used for both residential and commercial purposes, is it residential property and therefore subject to additional duty?
  2. Foreign purchaser additional duty also applies when there is an intention to change the use of a property by constructing residential premises. Can a foreign purchaser claim a refund if the residential premises is not built?
  3. From when does the amended definition of residential property apply?

Exemptions and concessions

  1. Does a foreign purchaser have to pay foreign purchaser additional duty if their spouse or partner is not a foreign purchaser?
  2. Does a foreign purchaser qualifying for the first-home buyer duty exemption have to pay foreign purchaser additional duty?
  3. Does a foreign purchaser qualifying for the first-home buyer duty concession have to pay foreign purchaser additional duty?
  4. What about a foreign purchaser qualifying for first home buyer duty reduction on contracts before 1 July 2017?
  5. Can a foreign purchaser receive the principal place of residence concession?
  6. Can a pensioner, who is an Australian citizen, claim a concession when they buy a property with a foreign purchaser?
  7. When a property is purchased off-the-plan, how is additional duty calculated?
  8. What is the dutiable value on which the additional duty is charged if a foreign purchaser entered a contract for a house and land package for $500,000 house and land package?
  9. If because of a marriage breakdown a property is transferred from one spouse or domestic partner to the other under a financial agreement, is the person receiving the property liable for additional duty if they are a foreign person?

Change of intent

  1. What if a foreign purchaser buys non-residential property and later decides to convert the property into residential property?
  2. Which rate of additional duty applies in respect of a contract that was entered into prior to 1 July 2016 for non-residential property where the transferee decides to turn the property into residential property after 1 July 2016?

Landholder acquisitions

  1. How does additional duty apply to landholder acquisitions?
  2. Is there any additional duty on a disposal of shares in a landholder by a foreign person?
  3. How is the total amount of duty payable calculated where there is a relevant acquisition in a landholder that holds both residential and non-residential property?

Discretion

  1. How do you apply for an exemption from additional duty?

Charge on the land for unpaid additional duty

  1. When does unpaid duty become a charge on the land?
  2. Why does unpaid duty need to be a first charge on the land?
  3. Will the State Revenue Office seek to enforce the charge if the foreign owner transfers the property to another person?

General questions

1. Who is a foreign purchaser?

A foreign purchaser is a transferee who is a foreign natural person, a foreign corporation or a trustee of a foreign trust.

2. How is the total duty payable calculated when a foreign purchaser buys residential property?

Calculating the total amount of duty involves three steps:

  1. Calculating the land transfer duty payable in the usual way, applying any relevant concessions.

  2. Calculating additional duty at the applicable rate on the dutiable value of the property (prior to applying any concession).

  3. Adding the land transfer duty payable to the additional duty payable to get the total duty amount payable on the transfer.

3. How is additional duty calculated if an exemption applies?

If a duty exemption applies, no additional duty is payable.

4. How is additional duty calculated if a concession applies?

Duty is calculated following the three-step approach in question one. The concession is only applied to the calculation of the land transfer duty amount in step 1.

5. What is the date of the contract - the date the vendor signs the contract or the date the purchaser signs the contract?

Both parties have to agree to form a contract so the contract comes into existence (or is entered into) on the final signature.

6. Does the additional duty apply to the GST-inclusive purchase price?

Yes. The additional duty is payable on the dutiable value of the property acquired (the greater of the price paid under the contract or the market value) before any concessions are applied.

Where GST is payable, it forms part of the consideration paid for the transfer.

7. How does the additional duty apply where there are multiple transferees to a transaction?

The additional duty is charged on the residential property transferred to each transferee who is a foreign purchaser under a transaction.

Example 1

Don, Liam and Emily jointly purchase a residential property in Melbourne for $600,000. The contract to purchase the property was entered into on 1 July 2016. Emily is a foreign purchaser and all three take equal shares in the property. There are no applicable concessions.

Step 1: The land transfer duty payable is $31,070

Step 2: The additional duty is payable on Emily’s one-third share in the property, the dutiable value of which is $200,000 ($600,000 ÷ 3). The additional duty payable is therefore $14,000 ($200,000 × 7%).

Step 3: The total duty payable on the transfer is $45,070 ($31,070 + $14,000).

8. Does the additional duty apply to contracts entered into prior to 1 July 2015 that complete after 1 July 2015?

The additional duty applies to contracts, agreements or arrangements entered into on or after 1 July 2015. If the contract, agreement or arrangement was entered into before 1 July 2015, then the transaction is not subject to the additional duty even if the settlement date was after 1 July 2015, subject to the answer to question 12.

9. What is the rate of additional duty?

For contracts entered into on or after 1 July 2015 but before 1 July 2016, the rate of additional duty is 3 per cent even if the settlement date is on or after 1 July 2016.

A rate of 7 per cent applies to contracts, transactions, agreements and arrangements entered into on or after 1 July 2016.

Nominations and sub-sales

10. Will additional duty apply in a sub-sale transaction where the contract and the nomination were both executed before 1 July 2015?

Additional duty will not apply where both the contract and nomination were executed before 1 July 2015 even if the transfer takes place on or after 1 July 2015.

11. Will additional duty apply where a foreign purchaser is nominated under a contract for the sale of residential property entered into before 1 July 2015 and the nomination is executed on or after 1 July 2015?

Where a contract of sale was executed before 1 July 2015 but the nomination was executed on or after 1 July 2015, that nomination will be subject to additional duty if the transaction involves a sub-sale trigger event (that is, additional consideration or land development).

Where a person is nominated to take a transfer under an off-the-plan contract, this arrangement will trigger a sub-sale event (as there has been land development). In this situation, land transfer duty is generally only charged on the transfer to the nominated person.

Therefore, where a foreign purchaser is nominated to take a transfer of residential property under an off-the-plan contract and that nomination occurs on or after 1 July 2015, additional duty will apply.

12. What rate of additional duty applies where a foreign purchaser is nominated under a contract for the sale of residential property entered into on or after 1 July 2015 but before 1 July 2016 and the nomination is executed on or after 1 July 2016?

Where a contract of sale was executed on or after 1 July 2015 but before 1 July 2016 and the nomination was executed on or after 1 July 2016, that nomination will be subject to the additional duty if the transaction involves a sub-sale trigger event (that is, additional consideration or land development).

Where a person is nominated to take a transfer under an off-the-plan contract, this arrangement will trigger a sub-sale event (as there has been land development). In this situation, land transfer duty is generally only charged on the transfer to the nominated person.

Therefore, where a foreign purchaser is nominated to take a transfer of residential property under an off-the-plan contract and that nomination occurs on or after 1 July 2016, the rate of 7 per cent will apply.

Residency

13. Does additional duty apply to a New Zealand citizen with a Subclass 444 Visa who is currently working overseas?

If the New Zealand citizen has a valid Subclass 444 visa at the day of settlement, the additional duty will not apply to them.

Please note:

  • Some visas cease when the visa holder leaves Australia, even for a short period of time. 
  • The State Revenue Office is not involved with visa requirement matters. If you are unsure about your visa status, contact the Department of Home Affairs

14. Does a person have to attach a copy of their passport to their transfer documents when submitting them to the State Revenue Office?

No. If we need more information, we will request it.

15. If a person has applied for but not yet been advised they are entitled to a visa within the meaning of s30(1) of the Migration Act 1958 (Cth), is that person still a foreign natural person?

Yes. A person remains a foreign natural person until the necessary visa has been granted to them.

16. If a foreign natural person buys a residential property together with an Australian-owned corporation, how is additional duty calculated?

Where a foreign natural person purchases residential property with an Australian-owned corporation, additional duty is payable only on the share of the property acquired by the foreign purchaser.

Residential property

17. If a property is capable of being used for both residential and commercial purposes, is it residential property and therefore subject to additional duty?

To be residential property, the property must be capable of being used solely or primarily for residential purposes. Whether the property is residential property depends on the facts relating to each property and is considered on a case-by-case basis.

18. Foreign purchaser additional duty also applies when there is an intention to change the use of a property by constructing residential premises. Can a foreign purchaser claim a refund if the residential premises is not built? 

No. The provisions do not provide for a refund in these circumstances.

19. From when does the amended definition of residential property apply?

The amended definition of residential property applies from 1 July 2016. If a contract was entered into before 1 July 2016, the definition must be considered to determine whether or not the property is residential property.

Exemptions and concessions

20. Does a foreign purchaser have to pay foreign purchaser additional duty if their spouse or partner is not a foreign purchaser?

It depends. From 14 June 2018, foreign purchasers acquiring a principal place of residence with their spouse or partner may be eligible for an exemption from the additional duty.

To qualify, the foreign purchaser must:

  • Acquire a principal place of residence jointly with their spouse or domestic partner who must be an Australian citizen or permanent resident, or a New Zealand citizen holding a special category visa.
  • Live in the property as their principal place of residence for a continuous period of 12 months, beginning within 12 months of becoming entitled to possession of the property.

The property must be transferred to both parties on or after 14 June 2018. 

If a foreign purchaser buys residential property in any other circumstances, additional duty may apply.

21. Does a foreign purchaser qualifying for the first-home buyer duty exemption have to pay foreign purchaser additional duty?

To be eligible for the first home buyer duty exemption, a foreign purchaser must buy the property with an Australian citizen or permanent resident, or a New Zealand citizen holding a special category visa, and enter the contract on or after 1 July 2017.

A transfer involving a foreign purchaser that is eligible for the first home buyer duty exemption does not attract any foreign purchaser additional duty provided the couple can meet the residency requirement. This is because transfers that are exempt from duty are also exempt from additional duty.

22. Does a foreign purchaser qualifying for the first-home buyer duty concession have to pay foreign purchaser additional duty?

To be eligible for the first home buyer duty concession, a foreign purchaser must buy the property with an Australian citizen or permanent resident, or a New Zealand citizen holding a special category visa, and enter into the contract on or after 1 July 2017.

From 14 June 2018, if a transfer involving a foreign purchaser is eligible for the first home buyer duty concession, no foreign purchaser additional duty is payable on the transfer if the foreign purchaser acquires the property as their principal place of residence and meets the residence requirement for the home.

If the foreign purchaser is unable to meet this requirement, additional duty is payable on their share of the property. This is because the first home buyer duty concession applies to reduce rather than remove the land transfer duty payable, and therefore the transfer may attract foreign purchaser additional duty.

If the partner or spouse of the foreign purchaser is unable to meet the residency requirement, they may be ineligible for the first home buyer duty concession and be reassessed for duty at general rates.

If foreign purchaser additional duty applies, duty is calculated using this three-step approach:

  1. Land transfer duty is calculated by applying the first home buyer duty concession to the dutiable value of the property, along with any other concessions.
  2. Additional duty is calculated on the full dutiable value (usually the contract price of the property) prior to any concessions applying, in proportion to the foreign purchaser’s share in the property.
  3. The two amounts are added together.

Example 2

Kate is a foreign purchaser who jointly purchases a residential property in Melbourne for $700,000 with Mark, an Australian citizen. The contract was entered into on 2 July 2017 and the property is settled and transferred to them on 1 July 2018. They each have a 50 per cent share in the property. It is their first home and they are eligible to receive the first home buyer concession.

Kate is frequently away and will be unable to satisfy the residence requirement. She is therefore ineligible for the exemption from additional duty. However, they are eligible for the first home buyer duty concession as Mark will be able to meet the residence requirement.

  1. The concession applies to the full purchase price of $700,000. The total land transfer duty amount after applying the concession is $24,713.
  2. As Kate is a foreign purchaser, foreign purchaser additional duty (7 per cent) is payable on the half share of the property she acquired ($700,000 x 50% x 7% = $24,500).
  3. The total duty payable for the transfer of the property is $49,213 ($24,713 + $24,500).

23. What about a foreign purchaser qualifying for the first home buyer duty reduction on contracts before 1 July 2017?

The first home buyer duty reduction is different to the first home buyer duty exemption or concession. It is only available for contracts entered into before 1 July 2017. These contracts are likely to involve properties bought off-the-plan.

From 14 June 2018, if a transfer involving a foreign purchaser is eligible for the first home buyer duty reduction, no foreign purchaser additional duty is payable on the transfer if the foreign purchaser acquires the property as their principal place of residence and meets the residence requirement for the home. If the foreign purchaser is unable to meet this requirement, then additional duty is payable on their share of the property. This is because the first home buyer reduction applies to reduce rather than remove the land transfer duty payable. The transfer may attract foreign purchaser additional duty.

If the partner or spouse of the foreign purchaser is unable to meet the residency requirement in these circumstances, they may be ineligible for the first home buyer duty reduction and be reassessed for duty at general rates.

If foreign purchaser additional duty applies, it is calculated using this three-step approach:

  1. Land transfer duty is calculated by applying the first home buyer duty reduction to the dutiable value of the property, along with any other concessions.
  2. Additional duty is calculated on the full dutiable value (usually the contract price of the property) prior to any concessions applying and in proportion to the foreign purchaser’s share in the property.
  3. The two amounts are added together. 

Example 3

Aya is a foreign purchaser and jointly purchases a residential property in Melbourne for $500,000 with Frank, her son, who is an Australian citizen. The contract to purchase a property off-the-plan was entered into on 1 July 2016. The dutiable value of the property, including the off-the-plan concession is $125,000. They each have a 50 per cent share in the property. It is Frank's first home and they are eligible to receive the first home buyer duty reduction.

  1. The duty reduction is a 50 per cent duty reduction and applies to the dutiable value, including the off-the-plan concession, of $125,000. The total land transfer duty amount after applying the duty reduction of 50 per cent is $1375.
  2. As Aya is a foreign purchaser, foreign purchaser additional duty (7 per cent) is payable on the half share of the off-the-plan contract price of the property she acquired ($500,000 x 50% x 7% = $17,500).
  3. The total duty payable for the transfer of the property is $18,875 ($1375 + $17,500).

24. Can a foreign purchaser receive the principal place of residence concession?

Yes. A foreign purchaser may be eligible to receive the principal place of residence (PPR) concession if they meet all the relevant criteria.

However, the concession will only apply to the land transfer duty amount and does not affect the calculation of the foreign purchaser additional duty. The additional duty is calculated on the dutiable value of the foreign purchaser’s interest in the property before applying any concessions.

If the foreign purchaser is buying the property by themselves, the additional duty is calculated on the full dutiable value of the property (usually the contract price). If the foreign purchaser is buying the property with others, the duty is calculated based on their interest in the property. For example, if the foreign purchaser bought an equal share with another person, the additional duty is calculated on a 50 per cent interest in the property.

From 14 June 2018, foreign purchasers who are eligible for the PPR concession may be eligible for an exemption from additional duty. To be eligible, they must:

  • Buy a property jointly with their spouse or domestic partner who is an Australian citizen or permanent resident, or a New Zealand citizen holding a special category visa.
  • Meet the residency requirement for the home.

If the foreign purchaser is unable to meet these requirement, then foreign purchaser additional duty is payable on their share of the property. If the foreign purchaser’s partner or spouse is unable to meet the residency requirement in these circumstances, they may be ineligible for the PPR concession and be reassessed for duty at general rates.

If foreign purchaser additional duty applies, duty is calculated using this three-step approach:

  1. Land transfer duty at the reduced rate is calculated on the dutiable value of the property, along with any other concessions.
  2. Additional duty is calculated on the full dutiable value (usually the contract price of the property) prior to any concessions applying, in proportion to the foreign purchaser’s share in the property.
  3. The two amounts are added together.

Example 4

Mary is a foreign purchaser who has purchased an apartment for $400,000. She intends to live in the apartment and is eligible for the PPR concession. The contract to purchase the apartment was entered into on 1 July 2016.

  1. The PPR concession duty rate applies to the purchase price of $400,000 so the land transfer duty amount is $16,370.
  2. As Mary is a foreign purchaser she is also subject to foreign purchaser additional duty of 7 per cent, which is calculated on the contract price of $400,000 before applying the PPR concession. The amount of the additional duty is $28,000 ($400,000 x 7%).
  3. The total duty payable for the transfer is $44,370 ($28,000 + $16,370).

25. Can a pensioner, who is an Australian citizen, claim a concession when they buy a property with a foreign purchaser?

Yes. The pensioner duty concession or exemption applies in respect of the share in the property that the pensioner acquires.

From 14 June 2018, if a foreign purchaser is jointly purchasing a principal place of residence with their pensioner spouse or partner, then the foreign purchaser is exempt from additional duty provided they meet a residency requirement in respect of the home.

If a foreign purchaser buys residential property in any other circumstances, they may need to pay additional duty. If the transfer is subject to additional duty it will be calculated on the full dutiable value of the foreign purchaser’s share in the property.

To see how this calculated, use our pensioner duty exemption or concession calculator.

26. When a property is purchased off-the-plan, how is additional duty calculated?

For contracts entered into on or after 1 July 2017, the off-the-plan duty concession is only available for properties acquired by owner-occupiers who are eligible for the principal place of residence or first home buyer duty exemption or concession. This means that after 1 July 2017, the off-the-plan duty concession is not available for residential investment property purchases or commercial property purchases.

Where the off-the-plan concession is available, additional duty is calculated on the contract price with no deduction on the consideration paid for construction occurring after the date of the contract. The off-the-plan concession still applies when calculating the amount of land transfer duty payable.

Example 5

Sarah, a foreign purchaser, entered into a contract on 1 July 2016 to buy an off-the-plan apartment in Melbourne for $500,000 as an investment. The off-the-plan concession reduces the dutiable value of the apartment to $300,000.

Therefore, land transfer duty is payable on the reduced dutiable value of $300,000, which is $13,070.

As Sarah is a foreign purchaser, she is also subject to foreign purchaser additional duty of 7 per cent. This is calculated on the dutiable value of $500,000 (that is, the dutiable value of the property before applying the off-the-plan concession). The amount of the additional duty is $35,000 ($500,000 x 7%).

The total amount of duty payable by Sarah is $48,070 ($13,070 + $35,000).

If Sarah had bought the property jointly with a partner or spouse who was an Australian citizen or permanent resident, or New Zealand citizen holding a special category visa, then no additional duty would have applied, provided that she met a residency requirement in respect of the home.

27. What is the dutiable value on which the additional duty is charged if a foreign purchaser entered a contract for a $500,000 house and land package?

Additional duty is charged on the dutiable value of the property before any concession is applied. In this example, additional duty is charged on $500,000.

A foreign purchaser may be entitled to an exemption from the additional duty if the home was purchased with a spouse or partner who is an Australian citizen or permanent resident, or a New Zealand citizen holding a special category visa, provided they meet the residence requirement and the transfer date is on or after 14 June 2018.

28. If, because of a marriage breakdown, a property is transferred from one spouse or domestic partner to the other under a financial agreement, is the person receiving the property liable for additional duty if they are a foreign person?

All current exemptions from land transfer duty also apply to the additional duty.

Section 44 of the Duties Act 2000 exempts certain transactions made solely because of the breakdown of a marriage or domestic relationship. Where s44 applies to exempt a transaction from land transfer duty, the foreign purchaser additional duty does not apply.

Change of intent

29. What if a foreign purchaser buys non-residential property and later decides to convert the property into residential property?

The foreign purchaser will be required to pay foreign purchaser additional duty in relation to the property within 30 days of forming the intention to convert the property into residential property. The additional duty will be calculated on the dutiable value of the property at the time it was transferred to the foreign purchaser. The foreign purchaser must advise the State Revenue Office in writing of their intention to convert the property into residential property within 14 days of forming that intention.

30. Which rate of additional duty applies in respect of a contract that was entered into on or after 1 July 2015 but before 1 July 2016 for non-residential property where the transferee decides to convert the property into residential property after 1 July 2016?

Example 6

Chang, a foreign natural person, entered into a contract on 15 June 2016 to buy a non-residential property in Melbourne for $1 million. As the property is non-residential property, the land transfer duty payable is $55,000.

Chang subsequently decides to convert the non-residential property into residential property on 30 September 2016. As Chang formed the intention to change the use of the property to residential property on 30 September 2016, he must notify us in writing by 14 October 2016 and pay the additional duty by 30 October 2016 (that is, within 30 days of forming the intention to change the use of the property).  

As the contract to buy the property was entered into prior to 1 July 2016, the rate of additional duty is 3 per cent, so Chang is subject to additional duty of $30,000 ($1 million x 3%). 

Landholder acquisitions

31. How does additional duty apply to landholder acquisitions?

Where a foreign purchaser makes a relevant acquisition in a landholder, as defined in the Duties Act 2000, that holds residential property, additional duty only applies to that part of the landholder’s landholdings which comprise residential property.

32. Is there any additional duty on a disposal of shares in a landholder by a foreign purchaser?

No. The additional duty is only chargeable in respect of the acquisition of an interest (usually shares or units) in a landholder by a foreign purchaser.

33. How is the total amount of duty payable calculated where there is a relevant acquisition in a landholder that holds both residential and non-residential property?

Example 7

ABC Pty Ltd, an Australian-owned private company, is the owner of three parcels of land in Victoria, with a total unencumbered value of $26 million. One of those parcels is residential property and has an unencumbered value of $1 million. The other two parcels are commercial properties with a combined value of $25 million.

Jane is the sole director and shareholder of ABC Pty Ltd, however her business partner Jason has acquired a 50 per cent interest in the company. The agreement or arrangement to acquire the 50 per cent interest was entered into on 1 July 2016. Jason is a foreign natural person. As a foreign purchaser, Jason’s acquisition of a 50 per cent interest in ABC Pty Ltd would be subject to the general rate of land transfer duty as well as the additional duty on the residential property held by ABC Pty Ltd.

  • Total value of Victorian landholdings by ABC Pty Ltd = $26,000,000
  • Interest acquired by Jason = 50%
  • Dutiable value of interest acquired by Jason ($26m ÷ 2) = $13,000,000
  • Rate of duty = 5.5%
  • Duty payable on interest acquired ($13m x 5.5%) = $715,000
  • Total value of Victorian residential landholdings by ABC Pty Ltd = $1,000,000
  • Interest acquired by Jason = 50%
  • Additional duty rate = 7%
  • Total amount of additional duty payable ($1m x 50% x 7%) = $35,000
  • Total amount payable by Jason ($715,000 + $35,000) = $750,000
 

Discretion

34. How do you apply for an exemption from additional duty?

The Treasurer, or the Commissioner under a delegation from the Treasurer, has discretion under the Duties Act 2000 to exempt a person from having a controlling interest in a corporation or substantial interest in a trust estate in certain circumstances.

The general principles and circumstances to be considered in deciding whether to grant an exemption are outlined in the Treasurer’s Guidelines. It is a legislative requirement that the Treasurer publish these Guidelines on factors to be taken into account in exercising the discretion. 

There are two sets of guidelines. The guidelines issued on 11 August 2015 will apply to any transaction or relevant acquisitions that occur before 5 January 2018. Following a scheduled review, updated guidelines were issued on 5 January 2018, which apply to any transactions or relevant acquisitions occurring on or after 5 January 2018.

If you wish to apply for an exemption, you should submit an application before completing your transaction.

Charge on the land for unpaid duty

35. When does unpaid duty become a charge on the land?

Any unpaid duty is a first charge on the land where:

  • A transferee is liable to pay additional duty in respect of a transaction. 
  • A tax default has occurred (that is, the correct amount of duty has not been paid by the due date).
  • The Commissioner has made an assessment or reassessment of the transferee’s duty liability on or after 1 July 2016.

36. Why does unpaid duty need to be a first charge on the land?

Unpaid duty involving a transferee that is liable to pay additional duty is a first charge on the land because it can be difficult to institute recovery proceedings against a person who resides overseas. The charge provides an effective means of securing any debt owed by a foreign purchaser.

37. Will the State Revenue Office seek to enforce the charge if the foreign owner transfers the property to another person?

We may seek to enforce the charge against the new owner if the charge is registered on title. If the charge has not been registered and the property is sold, we will not enforce the charge against the new owner.