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Can you register for VAT in a region different from where your business operates?

12 May 2015   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Author: SAIT Technical
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Author: SAIT Technical

Q: I have a client who is based in JHB, runs his business in JHB but has branches in KZN.  We do the bookkeeping and accounting in KZN.

Can we do the VAT registration here for him although the main office is in JHB?

A: The Value-Added Tax Act doesn’t prescribe at which office a person must register as a vendor. 

According to the Guide for completion of VAT registration application forms (VAT-REG-02-G01) the physical address details must be completed by all applicants and require the physical address of the business to confirm the location from where the business is conducted.  It therefore refers to the location where the business is conducted and we understand that it is SARS’s practice to register the enterprise at the SARS office closest to this address.  It would certainly not be the SARS office where an independent party does the accounting work. 

We see no reason why an application can’t be made to have it registered at a different address, but SARS may still insist that it is registered at the place where the business is situated or carried on.  The VAT404 states that:

"The VAT101 application for registration must be submitted in person at the SARS office or Large Business Centre (LBC) nearest to the place where your business is situated or carried on. This means that, in the case of a sole proprietor the individual concerned must submit the application in person, or in the case of any other person such as a partnership, company or trust fund, the relevant representative vendor must submit the application in person. Alternatively, a registered tax practitioner may appear in person on behalf of the applicant. A vendor that has several enterprises/branches/divisions which will operate under one VAT registration number, should register in the area where the main enterprise/branch/division is located.” 

Disclaimer: Nothing in this query and answer should be construed as constituting tax advice or a tax opinion. An expert should be consulted for advice based on the facts and circumstances of each transaction/case. Even though great care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the answer, SAIT do not accept any responsibility for consequences of decisions taken based on this query and answer. It remains your own responsibility to consult the relevant primary resources when taking a decision. 


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