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Overview of Rules and Requirements - Special Disability Trusts


Last amended: 27 May 2011

Trustee requirements

A trustee of a special disability trust (SDT) must meet specific requirements.    

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Transitional trusts

An exemption notice can be given to trustees of a trust established before 20 September 2006 if the trust satisfies certain conditions.    

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Reporting requirements

The trustee must provide the financial statements of the trust as at 30 June of the relevant financial year.    

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Non-complying SDT

If a trust becomes non-complying it will be assessed under normal trust and company rules.    

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The Commission may issue a waiver notice to a non-complying trust for a short time while the non-compliance is rectified.    

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Investment rules

The trustee must follow an investment strategy which enables the trust to pay for the reasonable care and accommodation needs of the principal beneficiary.    

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Expenditure rules

The trust must comply with the determination that sets out the limits on discretionary spending for other purposes.     

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Audit requirements

An audit of the SDT can be requested at any time by the principal beneficiary or other specified people and must be carried out within a reasonable time.    

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Obligations in relation to special disability trusts

A trustee of an SDT has obligations to DVA in relation to that trust.    

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According to section 52ZZZW of the VEA, a special disability trust is a trust that has been established solely in order to provide for the current and future care and accommodation needs of the beneficiary who is a person with a severe disability.



Financial year, in relation to a company, means:

  • a period of 12 months beginning on 1 July, or
  • if some other period is the company's tax year that other period.