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Queensland Government - Queensland Revenue Office
Queensland Government - Queensland Revenue Office
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    Various exemptions are available for certain transactions involving trusts.

    When claiming these exemptions and lodging the transaction for stamping, include a dutiable transaction statement (Form D2.2) and any other required documents stated below for each exemption.

    Read more about lodging and stamping documents.

    Change of trustee—no change in rights

    A transaction that changes a trustee is exempt if transfer duty has been paid on all acquisitions or surrenders of interests in the trust, and the transaction doesn’t:

    • change the rights or interests of a beneficiary of the trust
    • terminate the trust.

    How to claim

    To claim an exemption, you need to lodge:

    See section 117 of the Duties Act 2001 for more information.

    Change of trustee—change in rights

    If your transaction to change a trustee also changes the rights or interests of a beneficiary of a trust, it may still be exempt from duty if all the following apply:

    • transfer duty has been paid on all trust acquisitions or trust surrenders made before the transaction and as part of the transaction
    • the change of trustee is not part of an arrangement to avoid paying duty.

    How to claim

    To claim an exemption, you need to lodge:

    See section 117 of the Duties Act 2001 for more information.

    Certain vestings of dutiable property

    You don’t pay transfer duty on a dutiable transaction that happens because of a vesting of dutiable property:

    • on a statutory trust for sale or partition under the Property Law Act 1974, Part 5
    • in a receiver or trustee in bankruptcy, or a retransfer of the property to the bankrupt on the bankrupt’s discharge from bankruptcy.

    How to claim

    To claim an exemption, you need to lodge:

    • your transaction documents
    • dutiable transaction statement (Form D2.2)
    • an identity details annexure for each non-Australian transferor and transferee, when transferring real property (e.g. homes, apartments, business premises and vacant land)
    • a copy of the sealed court order or a copy of the national personal insolvency index and details of trustee in bankruptcy or discharge from bankruptcy
    • any other relevant information
    • a covering letter outlining the documents you have lodged, your name and return address.

    See section 125 of the Duties Act 2001 for more information.

    Trust acquisition or surrender in family trust

    You don’t pay transfer duty on the acquisition or surrender of a trust interest if all the following apply:

    • the trust is a discretionary trust
    • the trust is primarily for the benefit of the members of a particular family or family company
      • the person acquiring or surrendering the trust interest
      • is a member of the family or family company
      • will not, as a trustee, receive a benefit from the transaction.

    This means that duty is charged for trust acquisitions and surrenders in family discretionary trusts only when a non-family member becomes a taker in default or varies their trust interest.

    You don’t pay duty when a person joins or ceases to belong to a class of beneficiaries because of the birth or death of a member, or as a result of changes in the family.

    Note: When a trust transfers property to a beneficiary, this is not a trust surrender. Depending on who the trustee is, this transaction is either a transfer or trust termination, so the exemption doesn’t apply.

    How to claim

    To claim an exemption, you need to lodge:

    See section 118 of the Duties Act 2001 for more information.

    Trust acquisition or surrender in superannuation fund

    You don’t pay transfer duty on the acquisition or surrender of a trust interest as a member of a superannuation fund if the sole purpose of the transaction is to provide superannuation benefits for the member.

    Similar to a family trust, where a trustee transfers dutiable property held for the fund directly to a member, it is not a trust surrender. This transaction is either a transfer or trust termination (depending on the trustee), so the exemption does not apply.

    This exemption also doesn’t apply if dutiable property, such as a farm or investment property, is transferred by the trustee (from the fund) to personal representatives or beneficiaries of deceased estates.

    How to claim

    To claim an exemption, you need to lodge:

    See section 119 of the Duties Act 2001 for more information.

    Distribution of dutiable property to a beneficiary

    You may claim an exemption on a transaction to distribute dutiable property to a beneficiary if all the following apply:

    • transfer duty was paid (or exempt) on the creation of the trust or trust acquisition when the beneficiary acquired their trust interest
    • the dutiable property being transferred is the same property that was held on trust (or represents the proceeds of re-investment of that property) when the beneficiary acquired their interest in the trust
    • the transaction represents the beneficiary’s trust interest.

    The exemption will not apply if you have only paid duty on the transfer of the property to the trust.

    The Barry Trust buys a block of land. Transfer duty is paid on the purchase of the land.

    A few months later, Jill acquires a full interest in the trust as a default beneficiary. She pays trust acquisition duty, which is calculated by using the value of the land.

    The Barry Trust is wound up and the land is transferred to Jill as the sole default beneficiary of the trust.

    Because Jill paid trust acquisition duty when she acquired her trust interest, the exemption applies and no transfer duty is payable.

    As for the example above, except that Jill acquires a 30% interest in the trust.

    Because Jill paid trust acquisition duty on a 30% interest only but is acquiring the whole property on the subsequent transfer, the exemption applies only to the 30%.

    Jill will be liable for duty on the additional 70% for which duty was not previously been paid by her.

    The Smith Trust is created with Joseph Smith and Sarah Smith as the default beneficiaries. The trust only has cash as its property. No duty is payable on the creation of the trust because cash is not dutiable property.

    One year later, the Smith Trust purchases a block of units and pays transfer duty.

    The trust is wound up and the block of units is transferred to Joseph and Sarah. Because no trust acquisition duty was paid at the time of them receiving a beneficial interest in the property when it was purchased, the exemption does not apply.

    How to claim

    To claim the exemption, you need to lodge:

    • evidence that transfer duty was paid on the
      • trust acquisition when the person became a beneficiary of the trust
        or
      • creation of the trust when they started to hold the property as trustee of the trust for the beneficiaries. (This does not include the transfer duty that was paid for acquiring the property itself.)
    • the trust deed
    • a completed dutiable transaction statement (Form D2.2)
    • an identity details annexure for each non-Australian transferor and transferee, when transferring real property (e.g. homes, apartments, business premises and vacant land)
    • the documents for this transaction
    • a covering letter outlining the facts and circumstances of the transaction, your name, return address and a list of the documents lodged.

    For more information, see:

    You don’t pay duty on the transfer of property from a trustee to a beneficiary of a trust created for a person under a legal disability, under section 59 of the Public Trustee Act 1978.

    The surrender of a beneficiary’s trust interest as a result of the transfer is also exempt from duty.

    How to claim

    To claim an exemption, you need to lodge:

    See section 126 of the Duties Act 2001 for more information.

    Special disability trusts

    You don’t pay duty on the following transactions involving an eligible home under a special disability trust:

    • a transfer or an agreement to transfer the home to the trustee
    • the creation of the trust
    • a trust acquisition in the trust.

    An eligible home is residential land that is, or will be, used as the principal place of residence by the beneficiary of the trust.

    A special disability trust is a trust under the:

    How to claim

    You will need to provide

    See section 126A of the Duties Act 2001 for more information.

    Also consider…

    Last updated: 13 December 2023