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Render Unto Caesar

28 October 2013   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Author: Ingé Lamprecht
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Author: Ingé Lamprecht (MoneywebTax)

Harsh tax penalties reviewed.

Taxpayers who accidentally reduce their tax liability due to a reasonable mistake without any intent to defraud the Taxman, won't be subjected to harsh understatement penalties in future.

The Tax Administration Laws Amendment Bill was introduced in the National Assembly last week and revises regulations to such an extent that the South African Revenue Service (SARS) won't impose penalties in cases where the understatement by the taxpayer "results from a bona fide inadvertent error".

This follows criticism from tax practitioners and taxpayers on the harsh penalties previously imposed even where taxpayers had no intention of deceiving SARS.

The new penalty regime was introduced through the Tax Administration Act that became effective on October 1 last year but immediately drew widespread criticism due to the punitive nature thereof.

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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.


The Act requires that a minimum academic and practical requirments be set to register with a controlling body. Click here for the minimum requirements of SAIT.

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