The AASB 138 is the accounting standard for the treatment of intangible assets. The main features that have been mentioned in the accounting standard are identifiability, control and future economic benefit. These features have to be there for an asset to be identified as intangible asset. The criterion that has been included in these characteristics has been discussed below
Identifiability: This is the first feature that is mentioned in the accounting standard AASB 138. According to this feature an asset can be considered as intangible asset if it can be distinguished separately from goodwill. The goodwill of an asset gives the future economic benefit that can be considered if the asset is acquired from a business. Further it has been mentioned in the accounting standard that two aspects have to be considered if it has to be ensured that identifiability is there. These are separability and ownership. Separability means that the asset is a separate entity and can either be sold or exchanged or transferred with any of the following
In any of the above scenario the asset will be considered to be identifiable
In the case that the above condition with respect to identifiabilitry is not applicable for an asset to be identified as intangible asset if it can be shown that the asset has arisen from the contractual or legal rights this feature is said to be fulfilled. This will be applicable even if these contractual obligations are non transferable or can be separated from the entity. Fulfilling any of the above condition is mandatory for an asset to be considered as intangible asset.
Control: This is the second feature that has been mentioned in the accounting standard. This attribute means that the future economic benefits that will be generated from the given asset are restricted for the usage of other parties. This restriction on the usage can be there as a result of the legal right or patent or any other copyright that may be there. In case there is no legal right it will be difficult to show or prove the control the assets possess. But if it can be proved that the legal right is there controllability will be considered.