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South African taxpayers have started getting notices from SARS – here’s what you need to know

The South Africans Revenue Service (SARS) hasstarted sending out SMSes to taxpayers about a possible discrepancy in their information. Specialist firm Tax Consulting SA said that the message typically informs the taxpayer that they are being reviewed and that there are ‘discrepancies identified’. It provided the below example: Dear Taxpayer [Tax Reference Number XXX] SARS…

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Sars’s voluntary disclosure programme: What to expect

The purpose of the Voluntary Disclosure Programme (VDP) and the Special Voluntary Disclosure Programme (SVDP) under the Tax Administration Act is to enhance voluntary compliance “in the interest of enhanced tax compliance, good management of the tax system and the best use of Sars [South African Revenue Service] resources”. The programme represents an additional avenue…

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Home office expenses and tax deductions

The Covid-19 pandemic has caused great hardshipc and the lockdown, which was intended to mitigate its effects, has changed life as we know it. Lockdown levels 5, 4 and, to some extent, 3 have left most people immobile and working from home has become essential for the survival of companies and earning an income. Can…

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Know the tax deductions when you donate

Public benefit organisations (PBOs) and NGOs are scrambling for funds to assist with the alleviation of poverty during the Covid-19 pandemic. However, people who want to help those in need should be wary of promises of big tax deductions or benefits when they donate. Duncan Luke, chief executive of The Social Collective, said it was…

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Covid-19: Taxpayers can apply for a tax debt deferment

The bulk of the tax relief provided thus far has gone into providing cash flow support for tax-compliant businesses that have been negatively impacted by Covid-19. However, under certain circumstances, taxpayers with pre-Covid-19 tax debts may also be granted access to the Covid-19 tax relief, says Beatrie Gouws, head of stakeholder management and strategic development…

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Taxpayers Beware: 10 Points From SARS

On 5 May 2020, the Commissioner for SARS made a profound media statement, which gave a detailed account of projected revenue collection in light of the COVID-19 crisis, but also gave valuable insight of what we can expect from SARS in coming months. The most important aspects of the address can be unpacked as follows:…

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SARS REIMAGINED

TAX DODGERS TAKE NOTE On 1 February 2020, SARS released an exciting media statement, indicating that the revenue authority has embarked on a journey to reinvent SARS. With the power of technology and with the right people, SARS hopes to build an organisation that will provide a world-class service to the compliant taxpayer, but one…

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A theory of a tax revolt: Is South Africa on the brink?

Tax revolt

South Africans seem increasingly restive about paying taxes to a government mired in corruption allegations. Trust in government, not tax rates, determines citizens’ attitude to taxation. Tax revolts date back to biblical times. Throughout the ages they have exhibited similar symptoms of a decline in taxpayer morale and confidence in a government’s ability to manage…

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