SARS can search without warrant

The Tax Administration Bill was promulgated yesterday in the Government Gazette. SARS expected it to come into operation in the next three months, it said. It contains a clause that permits a warrantless search.

SARS spokesman Adrian Lackay said yesterday searching without a warrant will be in “narrowly defined” situations.

“It will mostly be in cases of crime where we get to a premises and find evidence is being destroyed,” he said.

SARS got legal opinion on the constitutionality on the specific clause in the act from two senior counse ls, Gilbert Marcus and Steven Budlender, who found it to be in order.

Lackay cited an example in Durban where SARS staff had to stand by helplessly while a suspect burned documents and financial statements in the courtyard of his offices.

via Bill gives SARS more teeth – Times LIVE.

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Payment pitfalls for provisional taxpayers

Over the past few years, significant changes have been effected to the provisional tax rules. However, not all provisional taxpayers have kept abreast of these changes. The result? These taxpayers often do not fully understand their tax obligations and end up over-paying or, worse, under-paying their tax and having to fork out significant amounts of cash to pay the South African Revenue Service (SARS) the resultant penalties, additional tax and interest for non-compliance.

This article sets out the more important tax rules of which individual provisional taxpayers should be aware. It also highlights some common pitfalls that are usually overlooked and provides some tax tips.

via Payment pitfalls for provisional taxpayers – Personal Finance Tax | IOL Business

What is eFiling?

SARS eFiling was launched in 2003 as a free online replacement process for the manual tax return submissions. This free service allows individual taxpayers, tax practitioners and businesses to register for free and submit tax returns, make payments and perform a number of other interactions with SARS in a secure online environment.

The eFiling service is on a par with international standards, being comparable with services offered in the US, Australia, Singapore, Ireland, Chile and France.

SARS has seen eFiling in South Africa grow significantly since it was initiated. For the 2009 tax year, more than 2.7 million individual tax returns were submitted through eFiling and annually over 7.5 million returns are submitted by businesses and practitioners.

Fixed Accounting is one of those practitioners who can assist you with your tax submissions – see our Services page above. Alternatively, visit the eFiling site here.