Australian Income Tax Commentary

Publisher: Checkpoint


Australian Income Tax Commentary


Australian Income Tax Commentary

Conducting research by trawling through multiple websites for information of uncertain providence is time consuming.  Income Tax Commentary provides explanatory commentary on the income tax laws contained in the ITAA 1997 and the ITAA 1936. This primary subscription resource is reliable, up-to-date and put together with practitioners in mind.  The Thomson Reuters Commentary team combines the skills of a very experienced group of in-house tax writers with a diverse range of proven external writers.

The commentary is structured using a “top down” hierarchy with detailed overviews which then push down to deeper levels of analysis.  This makes it accessible to all levels of tax professionals.

Australian Income Tax Commentary Features

  • The ITAA 1997 Commentary is structured on a “divisional subject matter” basis. The structure is subject matter based material – it is not annotated.
  • This approach enables our writers to “deconstruct” the legislation and address how a particular set of tax laws operates, and importantly, how it interacts with other laws, rather than explain in an isolated way how a particular provision works.
  • For those who are used to annotated commentary, we embed section finding lists so that you have the best of both worlds
  • Navigate quickly and easily between commentary and legislation to find what you need using links to commentary embedded in the legislation and vice versa.
  • Links to relevant legislation, rulings and cases

Australian Income Tax Commentary Benefits

  • The Income Tax Commentary provides the depth of analysis of the primary technical rules and linkages to related issues that a trusted advisor or professional needs to develop expertise.
  • Income Tax Commentary on Checkpoint helps you move beyond compliance to become a trusted adviser. 
  • The real value of a trusted advisor is demonstrated by expertise in transactional analysis – ensuring that a proposed transaction is structured or sequenced to achieve the business objective with the best tax outcome. 

Also available as an Australian Income Tax Commentary and Tax Legislation bundle as your authorative resource on Thomson Reuters' Checkpoint™ research platform.


  • ITAA 1997 Commentary
  • ITAA 1936 Commentary
  • Taxation Administration Act 1953 and related legislation
  • Tax Agent Services Act 2009

Updated regularly and with updating links alerting you to any substantive developments you will always have the latest information relating to each section.


The ITAA 1997 Commentary is structured division-by-division of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 on a subject matter basis, as opposed to CCH’s annotated commentary which employs a rigid section-by-section analysis.

TR’s divisional subject matter approach to ITAA 1997 Commentary is superior; rather than simply explain how a particular provision works (the focus of annotated commentary), it provides commentary which explains how the law works. It is capable of much greater flexibility in drawing together disparate elements present in various provisions (including provisions outside the tax laws) which give the law its practical meaning/operation

Annotated commentary explains how a particular provision works and, by its nature, requires the writer to explain each particular provision or section of an Act in a way that mimics the structure of the Act.  On the other hand, the divisional subject matter approach allows the commentary to be organised free of many of the constraints imposed by the structure of the legislation. The law continues to unfold through the practical application of the law – new areas of uncertainty, dispute and resolution continue to evolve. The divisional subject matter approach can address this process quickly and adroitly. This is unique in the marketplace.

While annotated commentary in print provides some convenience (by neatly packaging each provision with its dedicated bit of commentary), this is not what happens online – both CCH’s annotated commentary and TRs divisional subject matter commentary are presented quite separately to the legislation (which is accessed through hypertext links).

Current users of the CCH commentary accustomed to being able to quickly access commentary on a particular provision (because of the essentially “linear” roll out of annotated commentary) should be shown the comprehensive section finding list which can be found in each division or subdivision of the ITAA 1997 Commentary. The section finding list enables users who are researching a specific provision to quickly locate and click through to the commentary on that provision.  

The ITAA 1936 Commentary is a traditional annotated commentary service in same manner as its CCH equivalent.


  • Embedded updating links which alert users to any developments that have happened since the commentary was last formally updated.
  • Each division or subdivision of commentary contains a boxed " currency of commentary" statement, at the start of each division/subdivision, stating that the "Commentary reflects legislation as at " and a list of paragraphs affected by developments subsequent to that date. 
  • The ITAA 1997 legislation component of the pack contains detailed “legislation to commentary” link tables which enable the user to quickly locate and click through to the relevant commentary on a particular provision.
  • TR’s Tax Commentary team combines the skills of a very experienced in-house tax writing team and a truly diverse range of proven external writers:  partners and senior managers at major accounting firms, tax lawyers, academics, ATO officers and Australia’s best freelance tax writers.