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“No such thing as GIVING someone a trailer in the ACT”

By 15 January 2014 44

Just want to sanity check something, please, before I go on and kick up a stink with our friends at Canberra Connect. My mum has given me her trailer. It’s a standard small trailer, from 1978. It probably needs a new floor.  Currently, it’s registered in Victoria.

When I rang to ask about the process for transferring the rego, I was told that I would need to bring the purchase receipt with me. I noted there was no receipt as I hadn’t purchased it. No money has changed hands.

The person I spoke with insisted (quite rudely) that there is “no such thing as giving someone a trailer in the ACT”, and that duty must be paid.

Forgive my ignorance and lack of research, but this seems weird to me. Why is the government asking me to lie in official documents in order to collect probably $18 (at most) in duty?

 

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44 Responses to “No such thing as GIVING someone a trailer in the ACT”
#1
farout12:42 pm, 15 Jan 14

Just pay her a dollar, get her to give you a receipt for it, then follow the bouncing ball at Canberra Connect.

Or better still, put in a negative value, something line -$200, and take it to a CC saying she paid you to take it away. If you’re lucky the system will give YOU some money.

#2
quewastaken12:44 pm, 15 Jan 14

You’ll need a document signed by the previous owner stating it is a gift and nominating the market value of the trailer. In my opinion, you should value the trailer at 50 dollars (I believe you’ll pay less than $5 in transfer duty for a $50 trailer)

#3
Genie1:01 pm, 15 Jan 14

We tried this many years ago with a car.

My middle sister gave my eldest sister her old car. They just wanted to transfer the rego. No money changed hands but duty had to be paid on what they deemed the car was valued at.

Greedy in my eyes !

Even my mother had to pay stamp duty (again) on the house when removing ex-hubby’s name from the title. Even though again no money changed hands.

#4
p11:12 pm, 15 Jan 14

farout said :

Or better still, put in a negative value, something line -$200, and take it to a CC saying she paid you to take it away. If you’re lucky the system will give YOU some money.

I’m a big fan of this idea. Say the market value of removing it from her yard and replacing the floor was –$1000 and see off their computer explodes.

#5
enrique2:05 pm, 15 Jan 14

“Computer says no”

Pay peanuts, get monkeys.

#6
zorro292:20 pm, 15 Jan 14

Totally agree with you buddy.

Here’s another nonsense (aka revenue-raising example):
My partner sold his car and we are now sharing a car…so I wanted to have the car in both our names. My name would stay on the rego, just wanted to add his. I was told that was essentially a sale and he would have to pay duty on that…when the car was still worth $40k, there was no way I was coming at that.

Nonsense. Agree with the above….would be interesting to see what would happen with the scenario in #1 and a negative amount.

It just annoys me that they make it so hard/punish people doing the right thing…and we wonder why all the bogans never register anything or bother paying fines. Maybe we’re the crazy ones.

#7
Antagonist2:50 pm, 15 Jan 14

The person I spoke with insisted (quite rudely) that there is “no such thing as giving someone a trailer in the ACT”, and that duty must be paid.”

Just wait until you finally get down to the ACT Government Shopfront. The concierges are not only terse and rude, but regularly get into screaming matches with customers. You will then, somehow, have TaMS staff try to justify their behaviour when you take it up with management.

#8
dtc3:08 pm, 15 Jan 14

There is a valid reason for this. The whole duty system fails if the buyer and the seller – whether legitimately or not – declare the value of the item sold at under market value on the contract.

For example, say your parents own an investment property and then decide to let you buy it for 70% of the market value as your first home. Should you pay stamp duty on the amount you paid or the market value?

There is no difference with vehicles, except of course the amounts involved are much smaller. But the prinicple remains.

#9
MrBigEars3:15 pm, 15 Jan 14

dtc said :

There is a valid reason for this. The whole duty system fails if the buyer and the seller – whether legitimately or not – declare the value of the item sold at under market value on the contract.

For example, say your parents own an investment property and then decide to let you buy it for 70% of the market value as your first home. Should you pay stamp duty on the amount you paid or the market value?

There is no difference with vehicles, except of course the amounts involved are much smaller. But the prinicple remains.

I imagine as stamp duty is one of the revenue streams available to the ACT government, they’d be pretty keen to defend it.

#10
zorro293:23 pm, 15 Jan 14

dtc said :

There is a valid reason for this. The whole duty system fails if the buyer and the seller – whether legitimately or not – declare the value of the item sold at under market value on the contract.

For example, say your parents own an investment property and then decide to let you buy it for 70% of the market value as your first home. Should you pay stamp duty on the amount you paid or the market value?

There is no difference with vehicles, except of course the amounts involved are much smaller. But the prinicple remains.

I don’t see how it does….car values are pretty clear-cut. I don’t think people publish the list of sale prices registered with the govt when they sell the car. And do the govt report on the value of vehicles on the road??? It’s just a revenue source.

Property prices are actually kinda the same….anything is only worth what the market will pay for it, so what does it matter what you paid for it.

But maybe I’m missing something in my blind hatred of duties…

#11
Antagonist3:53 pm, 15 Jan 14

zorro29 said :

But maybe I’m missing something in my blind hatred of duties…

I hate them also, but you are indeed missing something. Stamp duty payable for vehicles is based on actual price paid or market value, whichever is *greater*. Even if the trailer was handed over as a freebie as per the OP, ACT Govco are going to slap you for whatever the deem is ‘market value’.

Sucks, because I though the idea of declaring a negative value was a great workaround :)

#12
blandone5:06 pm, 15 Jan 14

Last time i exchanged rego i intentionally left the purchase price blank – the kind lady behind the counter hinted that “nobody really checks the market value” so I wrote down $1000. Paid stamp duty on $1k, not $20,000 – winning.

#13
IrishPete5:06 pm, 15 Jan 14

Antagonist said :

zorro29 said :

But maybe I’m missing something in my blind hatred of duties…

I hate them also, but you are indeed missing something. Stamp duty payable for vehicles is based on actual price paid or market value, whichever is *greater*. Even if the trailer was handed over as a freebie as per the OP, ACT Govco are going to slap you for whatever the deem is ‘market value’.

Sucks, because I though the idea of declaring a negative value was a great workaround :)

Isn’t that what’s called “negative gearing”?

IP

#14
gazket5:18 pm, 15 Jan 14

tell them you paid $100 it will cost you $3 in stamp duty for lying. They need the $3 to water the trees.

#15
gazket5:23 pm, 15 Jan 14

zorro29 said :

dtc said :

I don’t see how it does….car values are pretty clear-cut.

except if your a Labor politician you seem to get $15k under market value deals on a new Volkswagen Tourag.

#16
dtc5:42 pm, 15 Jan 14

zorro29 said :

I don’t see how it does….car values are pretty clear-cut. I don’t think people publish the list of sale prices registered with the govt when they sell the car. And do the govt report on the value of vehicles on the road??? It’s just a revenue source.

Property prices are actually kinda the same….anything is only worth what the market will pay for it, so what does it matter what you paid for it.

But maybe I’m missing something in my blind hatred of duties…

Yeah, you are right when the house or vehicle is sold in the market ie as a result of a legitimate competitive sale – then the value is the sale price.

But the OP example (and my example) are for items sold not in the market but through private arrangements. The law requires duty at ‘market value’ in these circumstances. Or, for vehicles, I imagine something that looks roughly legitimate rather than via a formal valuation eg the $50 suggested (whatever is the amount that results in the minimum duty).

Genie said :

Even my mother had to pay stamp duty (again) on the house when removing ex-hubby’s name from the title. Even though again no money changed hands.

There is an exemption for change of names on title following a court order eg after a divorce (I believe formal court order includes a court approved separation agreement). So she shouldnt have had to pay duty. If she did, and it was by mistake, it may be refundable.

#17
Thumper5:48 pm, 15 Jan 14

gazket said :

tell them you paid $100 it will cost you $3 in stamp duty for lying. They need the $3 to water the trees.

Got to agree. Just lie.

Bunch of thieving pricks.

#18
Threeletteracronym2:20 pm, 18 Jan 14

Thanks all – very interesting discussion, as always!

The thing that gives me the sh1ts the most, I think, apart from the govt asking me to lie, is that if the rude cow had taken the time to explain where the law or regs are that state the requirement, I would have had a look at those and no doubt been somewhat mollified. I mean, srsly, there’s a fairly high percentage chance that I’m a public servant that deals with regs etc on a daily basis – at least do me the courtesy of allowing that I may have the intellectual capacity to deal with that, instead of just doggedly repeating that there’s no such thing as giving someone a trailer.

Arsehats.

ps I know I could have subsequently looked up the regs etc but I have a newborn and therefore much better things to do with my time

#19
Deref2:45 pm, 18 Jan 14

Idiots.

farout said :

Or better still, put in a negative value, something line -$200, and take it to a CC saying she paid you to take it away. If you’re lucky the system will give YOU some money.

I like it. But no doubt the tax office will charge you tax on the income.

#20
sepi4:56 pm, 18 Jan 14

They do have rude and unhelpful people at the motor registry. One told me that the only way to register a car in Canberra if you don’t own a house or have your name on the electricity bill was to put foxtel on so that you get your name on a service connected to a residence.

#21
Elf6:26 pm, 18 Jan 14

This is to stop you stealing a trailer and having it registered in your name and therefore legally yours. Think about it, I steal this trailer off you and register in my name by simply saying my mum gave it to me!

#22
KB19717:10 pm, 18 Jan 14

Threeletteracronym said :

Thanks all – very interesting discussion, as always!

The thing that gives me the sh1ts the most, I think, apart from the govt asking me to lie, is that if the rude cow had taken the time to explain where the law or regs are that state the requirement, I would have had a look at those and no doubt been somewhat mollified. I mean, srsly, there’s a fairly high percentage chance that I’m a public servant that deals with regs etc on a daily basis – at least do me the courtesy of allowing that I may have the intellectual capacity to deal with that, instead of just doggedly repeating that there’s no such thing as giving someone a trailer.

Arsehats.

ps I know I could have subsequently looked up the regs etc but I have a newborn and therefore much better things to do with my time

If you are a public servant who deals with legislation on a daily basis you would know that every government has a legislative register and that all this legislation is a matter of public record.

All the legislation for the ACT is on the net and really easy to find.

As a public servant you would also know that there are regulations and procedures in place that may not make sense on the face of it but there is usually a good reason as to why they are there. You should be more accepting of a fellow public servant who has to deal with trying to explain this stuff to people day in day out.

Maybe you are the arsehat?

#23
knuckles7:25 pm, 18 Jan 14

Threeletteracronym said :

ps I know I could have subsequently looked up the regs etc but I have a newborn and therefore much better things to do with my time

But you still have plenty of time to have a whinge on the internet.

#24
Sandman7:37 pm, 18 Jan 14

Oh no! The government requires me to do exactly the same thing as they require everyone else to do and it’s not fair!
Taxes, Levies and Duties have been around for thousands of years, and they help society to function. Sure, occasionally someone is slightly put out but if allowances are made for them that opens up loopholes for everyone else to take advantage of (and many will). Just put $100 on the receipt and pay your $3, instead of debating semantics with one of Canberra’s lower paid public servants who has no personal interest in the technicalities of an enquiry that reaches beyond the boundaries of a computer system that they don’t have the authority to override.

#25
Sandman8:03 pm, 18 Jan 14

Additionally, you’ll also need a roadworthy inspection. If it needs a new floor then the angst you’ve encountered so far will pale in comparison with what’s to come.

#26
Mordd11:11 pm, 18 Jan 14

When my mum gave me her old car, I had her write me out a proper receipt (on some random printer paper) and list the sale price as zero dollars on the receipt. I took that to Canberra Connect and they had no issue at all transferring the rego to my name with that receipt for $0.00 – go figure

#27
gooterz12:15 am, 19 Jan 14

Mordd said :

When my mum gave me her old car, I had her write me out a proper receipt (on some random printer paper) and list the sale price as zero dollars on the receipt. I took that to Canberra Connect and they had no issue at all transferring the rego to my name with that receipt for $0.00 – go figure

Technically a gift because there was no consideration.

#28
Mordd4:50 am, 19 Jan 14

gooterz said :

Mordd said :

When my mum gave me her old car, I had her write me out a proper receipt (on some random printer paper) and list the sale price as zero dollars on the receipt. I took that to Canberra Connect and they had no issue at all transferring the rego to my name with that receipt for $0.00 – go figure

Technically a gift because there was no consideration.

So what’s the issue with the trailer then? The title clearly says “giving” someone a trailer, not selling someone a trailer, so can’t the person just do the same, and make a receipt for zero dollars and use that? I’m confused…

#29
Felix the Cat6:20 am, 19 Jan 14

Elf said :

This is to stop you stealing a trailer and having it registered in your name and therefore legally yours. Think about it, I steal this trailer off you and register in my name by simply saying my mum gave it to me!

Do trailers have serial/chassis numbers? If so the rego staff couldsurely punch this number into the computer and it would come up with details of current owner, say Mary Bloggs and then you whip out your ID showing you are John Bloggs and so “my mum gave it to me” story is pretty much confirmed.

It seems to me the duty is just a revenue raiser.

#30
PantsMan9:10 am, 19 Jan 14

I agree this is just total crap from the entity somewhat strangely referred to as “Road User Services”.

I recently purchased a second hand car with a valid NSW rego inspection. All said and done, all the fees and taxes ended up costing me about $1,000.

On the website they said “We will give you a one week Unregistered Vehicle Permit if you have an interstate inspection report”. Applied for that, and got the “Sorry, computer says no” answer . Got to spend extra money getting two permits! Fun!

Then they charged me $21 for 12 hours of “third party insurance”, which works out at $14,000 per year. When pressed, they said “It’s not actually insurance, it just a fee payable to the ACT.” I presume they talk about user pays and all that, but then just make up random fees because they known can just extort it from you in the end.

On car transfers, there is even a $48 (or something) fee to facilitate the payment of the tax. Is this India? Why am I paying a fee (bribe) to pay a my tax?

ACT Government = total pricks.

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