Public Ruling FHOGA016.1.2 Signing a first home owner grant application by a person other than an applicant

A public ruling, when issued, is the published view of the Commissioner of State Revenue (the Commissioner) on the particular topic to which it relates. It therefore replaces and overrides any existing private rulings, memoranda, manuals and advice provided by the Commissioner in respect of the issue(s) it addresses.

Where a change in legislation or case law (the law) affects the content of a public ruling, the change in the law overrides the public ruling—that is, the Commissioner will determine the tax liability or eligibility for a concession, grant or exemption, as the case may be, in accordance with the law.

What this ruling is about

  1. The purpose of this public ruling is to clarify whether an application under s.16 of the First Home Owner Grant and Other Home Owner Grants Act 2000 (Grants Act), signed by a person other than the applicant, would be accepted for the purposes of allowing the first home owner grant.
  2. Section 16(2) of the Grants Act prescribes that an application in the approved form (application) must be lodged with the Commissioner in order for the application to be considered.
  3. The application is in the form of a declaration that must be made and signed by the applicant.

Ruling and explanation

  1. Subject to paragraph 8, the Commissioner will generally reject an application that has been signed by a person other than the applicant. This includes an application signed under a power of attorney for the applicant.
  2. The Powers of Attorney Act 1998 does not provide for a person appointed under a power of attorney to sign declarations on behalf of the person authorising the power of attorney.
  3. The application requires an applicant to declare, among other things, the following:
    1. whether the applicant has previously owned residential property
    2. the applicant’s intention to use the purchased residence as his or her principal place of residence within 12 months of settlement or completion of building (as the case may be)
    3. the applicant’s agreement to notify the Commissioner of any changes that may affect the applicant’s eligibility for the first home owner grant.
  4. Given this, it is reasonable to conclude that the applicant is the only person who can complete the application because the applicant is the only person who would:
    1. know the history of his or her residential ownership with any certainty
    2. be absolutely aware of his or her intention to use the property as his or her principal place of residence, especially if the applicant has not taken up residence at the time of completion of the application
    3. know and be required to notify the Commissioner of changes in circumstances that may affect their eligibility for the first home owner grant.
  5. Paragraphs 4–7 of this public ruling do not apply where a guardian1 signs an application on behalf of a person who is under a legal disability. In this case, the person under the legal disability is regarded as the applicant.2

Date of effect

  1. This public ruling takes effect from the date of issue.

 

Mark Jackson
Commissioner of State Revenue
Date of issue: 3 November 2020

References

 Public Ruling Issued  Dates of effect
From To
FHOGA016.1.2 3 November 2020 3 November 2020 Current
FHOGA016.1.1 24 February 2009 24 February 2009 2 November 2020
Supersedes Practice Direction FHOG 1.1 27 April 2001 27 April 2001 23 February 2009

Footnotes

  1. See the definition of ‘guardian’ in Schedule 2 of the Grants Act.
  2. Section 18 of the Grants Act