|Date of judgement||11 June 2019|
|Judge(s)||A. Boxall, Senior Member|
|Court or Tribunal||NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal|
taxes and duties - land tax – exemptions - Land Tax Management Act 1956 – principal place of residence exemption
B&L Linings Pty Ltd v Chief Commissioner of State Revenue (2008) 74 NSWLR 481
Dean v Commissioner of Stamp Duties (Qld)  2 Qd R 557
Leda Manorstead Pty Ltd v Chief Commissioner of State Revenue (2010) 79 NSWLR 724
Re Zino and Commissioner of State Revenue  VCAT 1707
Stoke-On-Trent Borough Council v Cheshire County Council  3 KB 699
The Applicants, Emmanuel and Spiro Raissis, owned land at Bondi (“the Bondi Property”) as tenants in common in equal shares. On 23 January 2018, the Chief Commissioner issued an assessment for land tax to the Applicants for the 2018 land tax year in respect of the Bondi Property (“the Assessment”).
The Applicants objected to the Assessment on 22 May 2018, claiming that the Bondi Property should be exempt from land tax as it was used by Emmanuel as his principal place of residence. The Chief Commissioner disallowed their objection and the Applicants commenced administrative review proceedings in the Tribunal.
The Applicants submitted that Emmanuel resided at the Bondi Property as his principal place of residence from 10 December 2017 to 17 March 2018 and that his occupation was genuine and intended to be permanent, cut short only by unforeseen circumstances.
The Applicants and their mother each provided statutory declarations supporting Emmanuel’s claim to have resided at the Bondi Property. The statutory declarations explained that Emmanuel and his family used to rent a property owned by their mother, but had to vacate after their mother decided to sell that property.
Emmanuel declared that he decided to move to the Bondi Property, which was in a state of disrepair, and renovate the property whilst living there. He declared that he spent six nights per week at the Bondi Property and used that property to cook, eat, wash and sleep. Due to the state of repair of the building, his wife and young children lived with relatives, moving between Vaucluse and southern Sydney. It was intended that his family would join him at Bondi once renovations were complete.
The statutory declarations included explanations that:
Senior Member Boxall:
Senior Member Boxall was satisfied that Emmanuel’s principal place of residence was the Bondi Property as at the taxing date for the 2018 land tax year, and that he provided a sufficient explanation for the short nature of the occupation (at  and ).
Senior Member Boxall held that the evidence presented by the Chief Commissioner that the Bondi property was not Emmanuel’s principal place of residence had also occupied some other residence (at ) was insufficient to outweigh the applicants’ evidence.