Skip to content
Finance Investment, Taxation

Tax agent misappropriates millions in client funds

Tax Practitioners Board 2 mins read

Benjamin Carter, a Penrith tax agent, has had his registration terminated with the maximum 5-year ban applied from reapplying to the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB) for registration. Mr Carter misappropriated over $20 million in client funds to support his lifestyle and gambling debts.

The Tax Practitioners Board (TPB) investigation uncovered that Mr Carter, had breached 5 items of the Code of Professional Conduct (Code) by engaging in serious and fraudulent misconduct. During the investigation, the TPB also identified a range of serious criminal offences and referred the matter to the New South Wales Police Force for criminal investigation. The TPB worked closely with the police and Mr Carter was arrested and charged with multiple offences. He is currently before the courts accused of the theft of client funds.

Mr Carter’s Code breaches included knowingly lodging false business activity statements and amendments on behalf of a client without their knowledge. He misled other clients into believing he had lodged their tax returns and advised them that they owed tax debts of almost $490,000. The clients paid this money to Mr Carter, which he then used for his own benefit.

In addition, Mr Carter failed to account for a further $350,000 worth of client refunds and payments from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) which he received on trust and again used for his own purposes. In another appalling display, he received $440,000 from clients to purchase shares on their behalf but failed to purchase the shares and misappropriated the money.

Mr Carter continued to show disregard for the tax system when he did not meet his own tax obligations, including those of his company, Carters Tax Advisory. He failed to lodge multiple income tax returns, activity statements, superannuation guarantee statements and self-managed super fund returns by their due dates. He failed to pay outstanding tax debts for himself and his company, totalling over $1 million.

Due to all these failures, it was determined he was no longer a fit and proper person. This resulted in Carters Tax Advisory ceasing to meet the registration requirement that all directors be fit and proper. The TPB terminated Carters Tax Advisory’s tax agent registration and imposed a 5-year ban on them reapplying.

Commenting on the case, Chair of the TPB, Mr Peter de Cure AM, said, ‘Mr Carter’s conduct was serious, fraudulent, and demonstrated dishonesty and deception. His actions undermined the integrity of the tax profession and caused detriment to his clients and the ATO. We were not willing to let Mr Carter continue practising as it posed an unacceptable risk to the public.

Mr de Cure went on to say ‘our strong collaboration with our co-regulators and law enforcement is an important part of our compliance work, it enables our combined success in stamping out illegal and unethical behaviour to protect the public.’

The TPB urges anyone who may have used the services of Mr Carter to login to their myGov account and check any tax returns or activities statements lodged by him are correct. If you need help finding a new registered tax agent, use the TPB Register.

About the Tax Practitioners Board

The TPB regulates tax practitioners in order to protect consumers. The TPB aims to assure the community that tax practitioners meet appropriate standards of professional and ethical conduct. Follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.

Thursday, 21 September 2023


More from this category

  • Finance Investment, Taxation
  • 07/12/2023
  • 16:38
Chartered Accountants ANZ


Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand welcomes and congratulates Mr Rob Heferen on his appointment as Commissioner of Taxation. Mr Heferen is well known and highly regarded in the tax profession having previously served as Treasury's Revenue Group leader. He has written extensively on a broad range of tax policy issues. He led the Secretariat for the Henry Tax Review. CA ANZ looks forward to working with Mr Heferen and the ATO leadership team as they tackle the many challenges ahead. These include implementation of the government's international tax reforms and the ongoing modernisation of the way the federal government…

  • Contains:
  • Finance Investment
  • 07/12/2023
  • 14:22

CSLR appoints CEO and a new director

The Compensation Scheme of Last Resort (CSLR) Transitional Board today announced two key appointments ahead of the scheme's scheduled commencement in April 2024. They are David Berry as the inaugural Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Delia Rickard as a Non-Executive Director. Mr Berry commences as CEO on Monday 11 December 2023. Mr Berry brings extensive experience as an executive, non-executive director and consultant who has made significant contributions to the financial services and consumer sectors through his strong leadership and change agenda. “David will bring a unique set of skills and experience to this role which balance both industry and…

  • Finance Investment, Oil Mining Resources
  • 07/12/2023
  • 14:01
Zenith Minerals (ASX:ZNC)


Zenith Minerals (ASX: ZNC), a leading mining and exploration company, is excited to announce a significant expansion in the number of lithium targets at…

  • Contains:

Media Outreach made fast, easy, simple.

Feature your press release on Medianet's News Hub every time your distribute with Medianet. Pay per release or save with a subscription.