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Operational Snippets

Thursday, 29 May 2014   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Author: Emmerentia Fischer
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Author: Emmerentia Fischer (SAIT Tax Executive Suite)

Bank detail verification

"The fraudulent changes to taxpayers’ banking details remain one of the biggest risks that the South African Revenue Service (SARS) has to deal with.” 

This statement from SARS resulted in SARS verifying any changes to banking details (registering, changing or verifying) thereof before updating the taxpayer’s banking profile.  Furthermore, if any refunds are due to the taxpayer, the refunds due will only be processed after your banking details are verified – as most of us are aware of.

Bank verification is therefore a thorn in many tax practitioners and taxpayers’ side.  Please ensure that the relevant material requirements in the guides are adhered to in every sense of the word.  "Registering or Changing of your banking detail” are one of the guides available in this regard.  In the event of a SARS official requesting information that are not included in the guides, please contact the team leader and/or branch manager of the SARS branch.

Single registration – Friend or foe?

One of the latest initiatives undertaken by SARS is the implementation of the "Single Registration”.  SARS will now have a single registration of a taxpayer across all taxes they pay and legal entities they are associated with.  What a great initiative! 

This initiative is in line with the TAA and SARS strategic plan for 2014.  The TAA provides the foundation for further and future modernisation and development of tax administration, including the development of a single registration system. 

On 12 May 2014 the Single Registration became reality (or nightmare) for tax practitioners and taxpayers across South Africa.  Due to the fact that there are always a lot of teething problems when implementing a new system, it came as no surprise that this is also applicable with regard to the implementation of the Single Registration.  The teething problems commences with the registration, amendments and verification form (RAV01) and none of us know yet where and/or when the teething problems will end.

E@zyfile Workshops

Schedules for E@zyfile workshops are available on SARS website.  SARS urges every E@zyfile user to attend the workshop at their closest branch.  This will empower the user to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information submitted to SARS.

Public Officer and responsibility for tax matters

The accountability of the public officer has once again came under the spotlight with the introduction of the Single Registration.  SARS wants to re-establish the chain of trust from the boardroom to the public officer and from the public officer to the tax practitioner.  SARS’ aim is to be able to pinpoint the accountability with regard to tax returns hence the initiative from SARS to request the update of the registered representative of every legal entity. 

Who is this registered representative?  The registered representative is regarded as a natural person that is appointed with full rights to act on behalf of another legal entity as it relates to all dealings or interactions with that legal entity.  The following capacities are regarded as authorised representatives:  public officers, main partner, main trustee, treasurer or administrators.

Even though the tax practitioner is handling the legal entity’s tax affairs in terms of the engagement letter entered into, the accountability of the accuracy and completeness of the information submitted to SARS will be fair and square on the shoulder of the public officer. 

Single registration and Third party data

Once all the new changes on SARS’ system with regard to Single Registration have come into effect SARS’ system will be linked to i.e. Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC).  If a company is registered with the CIPC, it will automatically be registered with SARS for company income tax purposes.

As part of the Single registration process SARS will be able to "clean up” their system to ensure the permanent information, which includes the public officer details, agrees to the information per CIPC.



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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