Tax practitioners who fail to register with one of the controlling bodies recognised by the South African Revenue Service (Sars), but still provide tax advice or services, could face serious repercussions from 1 July this year.
This includes fines and even imprisonment for a period of up to two years.
Piet Nel, project director for tax at the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (Saica), says the Tax Administration Act (TAA) that came into effect in October last year, requires any natural person (not companies or other entities) who provide advice to others with respect to tax legislation or even just assist in completing returns to Sars, to register with a recognised controlling body.
Section 240A of the Tax Administration Act, 2011 (as amended) requires that all tax practitioners register with a recognized controlling body before 1 July 2013. It is a criminal offense to not register with both a recognized controlling body and SARS.