What’s New at SARS

Reminder: SARS Third Party Data Submissions 2022 – NOW DUE (Today!)

31 May 2022 –  This notification serves as a reminder that Third Party Data submissions for the 2022 reporting period of annual Third Party Data Returns that includes the associated data files and declarations [IT3(b), IT3(c), IT3(s), MED, INS, FTI] are due by Tuesday, 31 May 2022.

Third Party Data Providers are urged to make timely submissions, as incomplete, late or non-submissions may be liable for penalties and would impact your respective clients. It is of crucial importance that data submissions are complete and accurate first time around as this data is direct inputs into the SARS processes that include pre-population and auto-assessments of tax returns. Your data submissions are enabling our ability  to offer a seamless service and experience to taxpayers (your clients) in line with our objective to make it easy for taxpayers to comply with their obligations.

It is encouraging to convey that 70% of the required Third Party Data submissions have been receipted as at 1PM today and we would like to thank those Third Party Data Providers that made their submissions well in advance of the due date.

Should you experience any challenges while making your submissions, you are welcome to contact us by emailing SARS Third Party Data Support ([email protected])

For more detailed information about SARS Third Party Data Submissions, please visit the Third Party Data Submission Platform webpage.

Media release – SARS reminds trusts of their duty to register trusts for income tax purposes

27 May  2022 – SARS would like to advise representative taxpayers of trusts of their duty to register trusts for income tax purposes.

Trusts are included in the definition of a “person” in terms of the Income Tax Act, 1962 (ITA), and as such the trustees or representative taxpayers have a responsibility to register all trusts for income tax purposes. Trusts that are required to register include all local trusts, non-resident trusts that are effectively managed in the Republic of South Africa as well as non-resident trusts that derive income from a South African source (for further guidance refer to FAQs on the SARS website https://www.sars.gov.za/businesses-and-employers/trusts/).

The representative taxpayers of trusts are the trustees of a trust, but the responsibility to submit the tax return may be conferred on a specific trustee or a tax practitioner. SARS wishes to remind trustees of trusts that they are required to ensure that the tax returns of trusts are submitted. Currently a trust, whether active or dormant, must submit an income tax return on an annual basis in line with the requirements issued annually by the Commissioner (as is required in terms of section 66 of the ITA). For the 2021 year of assessment, the filing season for trusts opened on the 1st of July 2021.

See the full media statement here.

Media release – Misdeclaration of sugar, textile and tyres

26 May 2022 – The Illicit Trade Unit (ITU) of the South African Revenue Service (SARS) in Durban has clamped down on an importer of 20 containers of sugar that were declared as containing rice, which is duty free. See the full media release here.

Legal Counsel – Secondary Legislation – Public Notices

26 May 2022 – Tax Administration Act, 2011: The public notice, scheduled for publication in the Government Gazette on 3 June 2022, relates to the notice in terms of section 25, read with section 66(1) of the Income Tax Act, 1962, specifying the persons to submit income tax returns for the 2022 tax year and the periods for submission

Publication details will be made available on 3 June 2022

Reminder: SARS Third Party Data Submissions 2022 – NOW DUE (6 days left)

26 May 2022 – This notification serves as a reminder that Third Party Data submissions for the 2022 reporting period of annual Third Party Data Returns that includes the associated data files and declarations [IT3(b), IT3(c), IT3(s), MED, INS, FTI] are due by Tuesday, 31 May 2022.

Third Party Data Providers are urged to make timely submissions, as incomplete, late or non-submissions may be liable for penalties and would impact your respective clients. It is of crucial importance that data submissions are complete and accurate first time around as this data is direct inputs into the SARS processes that include pre-population and auto-assessments of tax returns. Your data submissions are enabling our ability  to offer a seamless service and experience to taxpayers (your clients) in line with our objective to make it easy for taxpayers to comply with their obligations.

It is encouraging to convey that 80% of the required Third Party Data submissions have been receipted as at 1PM today and we would like to thank those Third Party Data Providers that made their submissions well in advance of the due date.

Should you experience any challenges while making your submissions, you are welcome to contact us by emailing SARS Third Party Data Support ([email protected]).

SARS strike impact on Customs will be updated daily at 8:00, 12:00 and 17:00

26 May 2022 – The SARS strike impact on Customs will be updated daily at 8:00, 12:00 and 17:00, keep an eye on the Customs & Excise landing page.

Legal Counsel – Dispute Resolution & Judgments – High Court: 2022-2020

25 May 2022 – Value-Added Tax Act, 1991

Value-added tax (VAT): Act 89 of 1991, section 11(1)(f) – Jurisdictional requirements for a supply of gold to be zero-rated for VAT purposes – applicable principles of statutory interpretation – certain VAT rulings referred to but not analysed

Media release – SARS remains operational despite strike

25 May 2022 – The South African Revenue Service (SARS) has noted that organized labour has opted to embark on an industrial action despite concerted efforts by SARS to avert the strike. SARS believes that its offer, to which it has received no response, is the best under the prevailing socio-economic challenges facing the country. SARS is also limited by the resources available to it from the funding grant.

SARS Commissioner Mr. Edward Kieswetter said, “I understand and empathise with the financial challenges faced by our own employees at SARS, as well as all employees country wide. In fact, all South Africans, especially millions who are unemployed, suffer the impact of the current economic climate. SARS is a microcosm of the broader society and the sentiment of discontent is understandable, especially when they have a sense that the current situation is unlikely to change in the short term. Employees do not willingly withhold their labour because that in itself has a financial impact on them under already tough times. One has to understand though, that when workers feel frustrated they feel that by going on strike is the last resort for them to be heard.”

The Commissioner continues: “SARS recognises the constitutional right of workers to strike and express themselves within the provisions of the law. The important work of SARS has to continue and we will take whatever steps necessary balance the impact of the strike with our responsibility to discharge the important responsibility of providing important services to taxpayers and collecting all tax revenues due. This very revenue pays the salaries of government employees and provides the necessary resources to provide public goods and services. The work of SARS is transformative and enables Government to build a capable that fosters sustainable economic growth and social development in the interest and well-being of all South Africans.”

SARS wishes to report that the first day of the strike proceeded orderly, without incident, and thank employees for exercising their rights, whilst respecting the rights of others and observing the law. Due to the wide range of on line services, disruption to the operations was minimal. Over the next few days, we will continue to monitor developments at our branch offices. Our website will continually be updated to advise the public on how to engage with SARS to fulfil their required obligations.

Taxpayers are encouraged to avoid coming to a SARS office.

Customs operations at ports of entry, especially borders, have been without major interruptions. All Customs border posts are operational with the contingencies in place mitigating the impact of the industrial action. SARS Customs will continue to rely on the support of other Government agencies across all border posts, especially from the South African Police to ensure that there is continued operation.

SARS has explained to employees that the principle of “no work, no pay” applies. It therefore urges union leadership to give a formal response to its latest offer in order to settle this labour matter, which is to no one’s benefit.  “I call on the leadership of labour”, continues Commissioner Kieswetter, “to consider our proposal. I assure you that it is the best we can do under the current funding constraints. SARS simply do not have the resources to meet the labour demand of CPI plus 7%.  I understand that our offer is not what our employees want, but it holds the real possibility of resolving the current industrial action at a time where employees in the entire public service are affected”

He concluded, “We realise that over the past few years’ remuneration and benefits has not kept up with inflation. In a country that is faced with high unemployment and other socio-economic challenges, SARS employees already have security of tenure, as well as market related salaries and benefits. This offer, whilst not addressing the demands of employees, will provide additional relief to minimise the impact of the current economic conditions. The doors of negotiations remain open and we are ready to work with our colleagues in labour to look at ways to improve the overall value proposition to our employees.”

SARS appeals to labour to remain peaceful in their protest and to respect picketing rules as specified in the CCMA Picketing Rules issued.

For further information, please contact [email protected]

Tender

25 May 2022 – RFP50/2021:  Provision of Fleet Management Services for a period of five (5) years.

SARS strike impact on Customs will be updated daily at 8:00, 12:00 and 17:00

25 May 2022 – The SARS strike impact on Customs will be updated daily at 8:00, 12:00 and 17:00, keep an eye on the Customs & Excise landing page.

Impact on traders and travellers – SARS wage negotiations dispute and declared industrial action 

24 May 2022 – This serves to inform you that SARS and its recognised trade unions, i.e. National Education Health and Allied Workers Union (NEHAWU) and the Public Servants Association of South Africa (PSA), are in dispute on its 2022/23 wage negotiations process. The high impact for traders and travellers will likely be felt at the following ports, see the detail in the letter to Trade.

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