Relaxed Numbers

Age is more than a number to you, and you are more than a number to us. Let the McKern team help prepare you for retirement - it's time to relax!

Succession Planning

As you prepare for retirement, there are many things to consider. McKern provide advice for succession planning for your family, business and/or investments. From large or multiple family groups to a Mum & Dad business looking to pass their business on to their children, there are many Small Business Capital Gains Tax (CGT) concessions to be considered. These issues can greatly impact the tax effect of the eventual sale of a business, and need to be considered carefully in the early years when structuring is taking place. 

Pensions & Centrelink

There are many factors to consider for tax-payers reaching retirement age. One of these factors includes the limits on the level of income and assets for eligibility for various government pensions and benefits. McKern can assist in planning your retirement assets and income to ensure you retain benefits where possible.

Self-Managed Super Funds

McKern can provide all services regarding compliance obligations that you or your Self-Managed Superannuation Fund may have, including; Employer Super, Financial Statements, Income Tax Returns, and compliance audits. With a strong desire to provide additional service, support and value to you, we are very pleased to announce that we are now able to offer financial planning and advice, ‘in-house.’ We can of course still assist should you use an external financial planner, subject to the requirements of the FOFA legislation.

The firm currently has three individuals that are licensed to provide financial advice to clients – Damien McKern, the Principal and Owner of the business, Associate, Shelly Hutchison, and Client Manager, Scott Williams. Together they have in excess of 60 years of accounting, tax business advisory and financial services experience, and are well placed to assist you in a broad range of advice areas, like Self-Managed Superannuation Funds.


McKern can provide various cash-flow and other analysis reports to assist in the consideration of different investments options, including various investment forms, and by different structures.  From a residential rental property owned by an individual through to managed funds in a geared investment portfolio held by a Trust, McKern can provide detailed net cash-flow estimates, based on after-tax dollars.

Relaxed Numbers FAQs

Do I need a will?

The answer to this question depends on individual circumstances, but is almost always yes!  If you have dependents, and you die ‘intestate’ (without a valid Will) then you risk your assets (including any superannuation or life insurance) not being available for your dependents when they will most likely need it most.

McKern works closely with various family lawyers who can ensure your Wills are valid and work effectively to ensure any superannuation and/or tax and succession planning issues have been considered and the assets of your estate are maximised and available for your chosen beneficiaries.

Talk to the McKern team about your will. 

What happens to my assets when I die?

If you have a valid Will, the Executor of your Will can administer your wishes by organising for your assets to be directed to your chosen beneficiaries. The Executor of your Will will also be responsible for ensuring that any outstanding taxation matters are resolved with the ATO, and the payment of any outstanding income tax from your Estate.

If you do not have a valid Will, your assets may not be distributed as you wish. The Intestacy Rules will govern how your assets are distributed. 

Protect your loved ones and your assets, talk to the team at McKern

How do I get a will?

McKern has various trusted specialist Family Lawyers who we work closely with to ensure your Will is drafted to best accommodate the distribution of your assets when the time comes. They also ensure the best outcomes for succession planning matters for your businesses and investments after you have passed. 

McKern understands both the sensitivities and importance of a Will. We would love to work with you to achieve the best outcome for you and your family. Contact Us for an appointment. 

How do I transfer a business to a family member?

There are many issues to consider for the transfer of a business.  One issue is Capital Gains Tax (CGT).  Even if you gift your business to a family member, for tax purposes, the business will be taken to have been sold for the market value - therefore, it may crystallise a CGT obligation.

Other considerations are Stamp Duty.  In Queensland, stamp duty is levied on the transfer of a Queensland business or business assets.

Have you considered the structure of the business going forward?  An effective business structure should consider your succession plans and best allow for the transfer of the control and ownership of your business within your family.

McKern are experienced in this area and are happy to discuss business transfers and succession planning with you. Contact McKern to arrange an appointment. 

How do I set up a SMSF?

We can assist in the setup of a Self Managed Superannuation Fund (SMSF). 

McKern Strategic is a Corporate Authorised Representative of Count Financial and is able to provide advice on the set up and operation of your SMSF.

Contact McKern to discuss SMSFs. 

What are the benefits of a SMSF?

The benefit of having a Self Managed Superannuation Fund (SMSF) is that as the Trustee of your fund, you will be solely responsible for the management of the investments for your retirement. This provides an opportunity for you to invest your retirement savings into specific areas that you are interested in or where you see the most growth potential. 

It's important to note that there are various annual costs of maintaining a SMSF and for this reason the ATO suggest that as a guide, SMSFs would only be viable for Members with a combined balance of at least $200,000 to invest (ATO - Self Managed Super Funds). We have found that funds with less than this can usually achieve a better return by investing in a larger managed fund.

Want to know more about SMSFs? Contact McKern for an appointment. 

How does a testamentary trust work?

A Testamentary Trust is a Trust that is a result a person's Will.  It is when the Will directs specific assets of the Estate to the Testamentary Trust upon the death of a person. The Trustee (as nominated in the Will) of the Testamentary Trust is then responsible for the management of the assets of the Trust, on behalf of the specified Beneficiary/Beneficiaries. 

An additional benefit of a Testamentary Trust is when the beneficiaries of the Trust are minors. Any income distributions from the Testamentary Trust will be taxed as though they are adults, therefore there is access to lower tax rates than if the income was distributed to a minor from a regular investment Trust.

Testamentary Trusts need to be set up in a person's Will. McKern has various specialist Family Lawyers who we work closely with who can assist with Testamentary Trusts. Contact McKern for an appointment. 

Am I entitled to Centrelink pension?

There are asset and income tests that need to be satisfied in order to be eligible for a Centrelink pension once you have reached retirement. By structuring your investments carefully, we can assist you to ensure you will receive the most benefits you would be eligible for.

The tests and thresholds are updated from time to time and are very specific to your individual circumstances. Contact McKern to make an appointment to discuss the rules as they apply to you.

Am I eligible for a concession or health care card?

There are various types of Concession and Health Care Cards provided by the government, all providing different levels of benefits.  Your eligibility for the different types of cards will be dependent on the type of income support pension you are eligible for, your age, whether you have any dependents and various other requirements. Consideration can be given to these requirements when you are planning for your retirement to maximise any benefits you may be eligible for.

Preparing for retirement? Contact McKern, we would love to assist and advise you.