Laura Spencer Senior Associate

Laura is a lawyer in our Tax & Structuring team. She has worked in legal and advisory firms both in Australia and the UK, as well as at the State Revenue Office of Victoria which provided her with invaluable insights into dealing with revenue offices.  

Laura has worked with an array of clients including from wealthy family groups and large corporations across a wide variety of industries. Laura has a particular interest and experience in assisting clients with:  

  • business structuring as a result of a merger or acquisition. For example, Laura previously advised and prepared a restructure plan for a national company operating via a significant number of trusts and entities to consolidate into a single entity as requested by the potential buyer. This included advising on trust law, the application of CGT roll-overs and implications of various state tax legislation applicable to the restructure 
  • restructures aimed at facilitating business growth. Laura’s work has included federal and state tax advice, in particular the application of CGT roll-overs and small business CGT concessions, as well as commercial and trust advice to create an effective structure for the business 
  • implementing business and family succession planning for large family groups including the preparation of shareholder/unitholder agreements, tailored constitutions and custom trust deeds allowing for both the progression of control as intended as well as achieving asset protection goals 
  • end-to-end management of tax disputes and audits including as part of the Next 5,000 programs as well as audits arising from state and federal revenue office compliance activities and reviews. Laura’s experience in this area includes responding to audits, disputing ATO and SRO positions, negotiating positions and preparing and making voluntary disclosures with penalty reduction submissions 
  • trust law matters and drafting of complex deeds, variations, exclusions and other trust related documents. Laura has advised on appropriate trust structures and persons/entities to hold key roles such as appointor and trustee as well as administration issues such as the extent of trustee powers, how to effectively manage trusts and the rights of beneficiaries. Blending her trust and tax law knowledge Laura has also provided clients with advice on vesting issues, implications of foreign beneficiaries, the ability to effectively transfer trust property and general taxation of trusts, and  
  • decoding the complex world of the taxation of crypto assets. Laura has previously advised on the application of the appropriate tax treatment of crypto assets (revenue v capital), the application of the personal use exemption to cryptocurrency, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and other crypto assets. Laura has run workshops for accountants on blockchain technology, crypto assets and the application of tax law to these areas enabling the participants to new learn skills to identify key tax issues for their clients.  

Laura’s broad technical knowledge is complemented by a strong commercial focus, providing clients with practical advice and solutions to a variety of tax and structuring issues.  

Laura holds degrees in law (with honours) and business as well as a post graduate qualification in law (awarded with merit). She is an active member of the Tax Institute and in 2021 was elected to the Victorian State Council (which manages the affairs of the Tax Institute in Victoria). 

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