Six law firms are among 13 organisations that have been appointed to the Commonwealth Government's new Tax Design Advisory Panel which was announced on Monday by Assistant Treasurer Senator Nick Sherry.
The panel was selected from a public tender process, and law firms making the cut were Clayton Utz, Corrs Chambers Westgarth, DLA Phillips Fox, Greenwoods & Freehills and Hall & Wilcox.
The aim of the panel is to enhance consultation with the business community in the development and design of new tax laws. It stems from a recommendation made in an earlier review of Government tax design and review processes which called for an increase use of external experts, including at the initial policy design stage.
The panel is to be engaged by Treasury on a case-by-case basis, with either the whole panel, or a subset of the panel being approached for a particular task.
Announcing the panel, Sherry said that it would be a "major enhancement" to the design of tax policy.
"The use of expert advice from the private sector is a common and long-running practice used by government, but we're setting up a strategic and structured approach compared to the ad-hoc way of doing things in the past," he said.
- Zoe Lyon