Greenwoods & Herbert Smith Freehills has one of Australia’s leading GST practices. We provide our clients with sound commercial solutions to the GST issues that arise in transactions they undertake as well as in the course of their broader businesses.

Our team regularly assists clients with Australian Taxation Office interactions, audits and disputes. We have been successfully dealing with GST audits and rulings for clients since the GST regime was first introduced in Australia.

On major transactions, we work seamlessly with our corporate tax and Herbert Smith Freehills colleagues to ensure that GST is appropriately considered when structuring transactions and is addressed when transactions are implemented.

We have developed deep industry specialisation in real estate, financial services and energy and resources through our participation in industry bodies since the inception of the GST and our leading role in on-going lobbying on legislative and administrative changes.

GST Transactions

Nine Entertainment: sale of ACM

Greenwoods have advised Nine Entertainment (Nine) on the agreed sale of ACM for approximately $115 million.

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Wesfarmers: Coles demerger

Greenwoods have advised Wesfarmers in relation to the spin-off of the Coles supermarket business into a standalone entity.

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Gateway Lifestyle: restructure and IPO

Greenwoods & Herbert Smith Freehills advised Gateway Lifestyle on its restructure and initial public offering.

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GST Publications

12 Sep 2019  |  External Publications  |  GST

Property in Practice 2019 – GST Current Issues

At The Tax Institute's Property in Practice 2019 series held in Sydney, Greenwoods Senior Associate Rebecca Lawrence presented on GST Current Issues. The paper was co-authored by Andrew Howe, Director, and Helena Papapostolou, Associate.

Greenwoods & Herbert Smith Freehills - Property in Practice 2019 - GST Current Issues 12 Sep 2019.pdf (1203 kb)

08 Jul 2019  |  Riposte  |  GST

Introduction of Director Penalty Notices and Estimates for GST

In a bid to further reduce phoenixing activity, the Government is granting the Commissioner tough new powers to hold taxpayers and directors of companies to account for GST liabilities. The introduction of Director Penalty Notices for GST will be of keen interest to all company directors. In addition, failure to lodge GST returns on time may result in a legally enforceable liability based on ATO estimates. As a result, the people and processes responsible for preparation and lodgement of GST returns may find their work subject to more scrutiny .

29 Mar 2019  |  Riposte  |  GST

Repeal of GST Regulations 1999

The 1999 GST Regulations are being repealed on 1 April 2019. A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax) Regulations 2019 were registered on 26 March 2019 to take effect from 1 April 2019. The 2019 Regulations ‘remake and improve the operation’ of the GST Regulations without- it is intended- changing their basic operation or introducing policy change. But there are changes.

02 Jul 2018  |  Riposte  |  Real Estate  |  GST

Happy New (Financial) Year! Welcome to GST Withholding...

The GST Withholding regime commenced on 1 July 2018, so purchasers exchanging from now on will be required to withhold an amount for GST when they acquire most new residential premises and potential residential land. Due to the transitional provisions, GST withholding will not apply where the contract was entered into prior to this date and the first payment (other than any consideration paid as a deposit) is provided before 1 July 2020.

07 Feb 2018  |  Riposte  |  GST

Purchaser GST withholding - the final cut

On 7 February 2018 the Government introduced legislation for the GST withholding measure on sales of new residential premises and potential residential land. Due to successful lobbying, there are quite a few beneficial changes in the bill compared to the Exposure Draft released in November. However the measure is still due to take effect from 1 July 2018… not leaving a lot of time to change systems and contracts.

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GST team

Andrew Howe



Tim Neilson

Special Counsel


Chris Colley



Nick Heggart

Partner, Head of Energy & Resources


Rebecca Lawrence

Associate Director