Vic farm stamp duty exemption clarified

Further guidance on the Victorian Government’s decision to remove stamp duty on farm products and what the exemption applies to has been provided by the Victorian State Revenue Office (SRO).

The Victorian Government announced in its May Budget this year that it would remove “insurance duties on policies that insure agricultural products against damage from flood, fire and other accidental provisions to reduce costs for farmers and primary producers”.

The SRO has since confirmed that insurance taken out for “agricultural products” is exempt from insurance duty from 1 July 2017. The SRO states: “This covers insurance for different types of crops, livestock and for various assets used as part of primary production activity.”

The actual exemption from stamp duty is contained in section 196 of the Duties Act 2000. It now provides the following is exempt from duty:

(e) crop insurance, being insurance covering loss due to the destruction of, or physical damage to, any crop of grain, fruit, vegetable or other plant, where the destruction or damage occurs while the crop is being grown, harvested or stored;

(ea)  agricultural machinery insurance, being insurance covering the breakdown of, or physical damage to, a harvester, binder, tractor, plough or other agricultural implement or any equipment associated with any such agricultural machinery;

(eb)  livestock insurance, being insurance covering loss due to any of the following –

  • The death of, or physical damage to, any animal, bee or bird, whether domesticated or wild, or any egg intended for hatching, including where the death or damage occurs while the animal, bee, bird or egg is being stored;
  • The death of, or physical damage to, any genetic material of any livestock referred to in paragraph (i), including where the death or damage occurs while the genetic material is being stored;
  • The theft of any livestock referred to in paragraph (i) or any genetic material referred to in paragraph (ii).

Brokers needing confirmation or clarification of these provisions should contact the Victoria State Revenue Office at www.sro.vic.gov.au.