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E-filing and Submission of Tax Returns

Wednesday, 16 May 2018   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Author: Dr Beric Croome
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Author: Dr Beric Croome (ENSafrica)

Until 2007 taxpayers had no choice but to file paper-based tax returns with SARS. This required the completion of a paper-based return and also the submission of the taxpayers’ supporting documents and tax certificates. SARS then introduced e-filing, whereby taxpayers could register for e-filing and submit their tax returns electronically. With e-filing it is not possible to submit supporting documents when, for example, an individual files their tax return, the ITR12.

Furthermore, taxpayers have a choice to register for e-filing personally and file their returns themselves or they can appoint a registered tax practitioner to act on their behalf and file their returns. The Tax Administration Act (‘the Act’) sets out who must register as a tax practitioner, as well as the statutory obligations arising where a person is a registered tax practitioner.

A registered tax practitioner must be a member of a SARS Recognised Controlling Body or a body recognised by the Act. All registered tax practitioners must adhere to the code of professional conduct prescribed by their controlling body. If the practitioner does not comply with their code of conduct or the provisions of the Act, SARS can lodge a complaint against the practitioner.

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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.

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