Does your small business want to offer shares to key staff? If so, the government wants to make it easier.

The federal government has released a consultation paper on proposed reforms to make it easier for small businesses to offer employee share schemes.

Assistant treasurer Stuart Robert said the proposals in the consultation paper would make it more attractive for small businesses to give their staff shares.

This would be done by “simplifying, consolidating and expanding the current regulatory framework” and “reducing the time and cost burden for businesses”.

The government wants to:

  • increase the value limit of financial products that can be offered by unlisted companies in a 12-month period from $5,000 per employee to $10,000 per employee
  • expand relief for unlisted companies offering an employee share scheme  to cover contribution plans, where an employee can make a monetary contribution to acquire financial products
  • allow small businesses to offer an employee share scheme without publicly disclosing commercially sensitive financial information in lodged disclosure documents (unless they are otherwise obligated to do so)