Peter R S

GST refunds imminent on stakes percentages

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A real win for all those owners who are not GST registered for their racing interests, and who have won stake money since 2013.

After a court judgement last year on this topic, the resulting test case has found in favour of the original judgement and NZTR have had a big win for many owners. Some great news for racing.


As I understand it, in brief, percentages paid to trainers and jockeys are now deemed to be paid by the club (rather than the owner) so the GST on them is reclaimable by the club.  Good news for non-registered (for GST) owners, the clubs will get this back and refund you. In future stakes payouts, the deduction of percentages will not include any GST.


Appears to be some very clear thinking by Judge Helen Cull which will financially assist many owners. Better still, IRD have lost their challenge to the decision.

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I have a good working knowledge of this issue as I was the GST advisor to the Australian Racing Board in 1999 and 2000. The division of prize money into three distinct pools was initially raised by myself with Andrew Harding - the then CEO of the ARB (now deputy CEO of Hong Kong Jockey Club). The ARB took up this opportunity and it estimated that in its first year it saved unregistered owners some A$7 million.

This division of prize money was first raised by myself with the NZTR Board in 1999 after a similar change was made to the Rules of Racing in Australia. This opportunity fail on deaf ears with NZTR for 13 years despite regular efforts by myself to promote it This lost GST Refund opportunity for unregistered owners during this period would have been many millions of dollars. Again old style thinking.

The opportunity was taken up by the NZTR CEO at that time Murray Holmes with great support from NZTR Board member Greg McCarthy and congratulations to both these forward thinking gentlemen.

The GST Refunds yet to be received by unregistered owners will exceed $1 million which will be a welcome receipt 

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