July 7, 2020

Why an estate plan is crucial

We’ve all seen it in movies and novels: A young unsuspecting person wakes up one day to find out that they had been left an extraordinarily large estate from a distant relative that they hardly knew existed. We chalk it up to an absurdity. Something like that would never happen in real life, would it? Although it may seem farfetched, intestate succession happens far more often than one might realise. Statistics from the Master of the High Court in September 2019 showed that 70% of working South Africans do not have a will (or by extension, estate plan). Apart from […]
July 7, 2020

Meeting the requirements of export regulations

Interpretation Note 30 (“IN 30”) by the South African Revenue Service (“SARS”) explains the requirements that need to be adhered to and prescribes the documentary proof, acceptable to the Commissioner, that must be obtained and retained by a vendor in order to levy value-added tax (“VAT”) at zero rate on a supply of movable goods, where those goods are consigned or delivered to a recipient at an address in an export country. Should these requirements not be adhered to, exports could potentially be accounted for at the standard VAT rate of 15%, which will result in adverse tax (and commercial) […]
July 7, 2020

Doubling down on income taxes

The purpose of double tax agreements (“DTA” or “treaty”) between the tax administrations of two countries is to enable the administrations to eliminate double taxation, where each country intends to levy a tax in respect of the same amount of personal income. South Africa has a very favourable treaty network across the world. Generally, the provisions of double tax agreements have preference over local legislation, so one needs to take notice when a court delivers judgment on a matter contained in a DTA. The Supreme Court in the United Kingdom (UK) recently delivered judgement in Fowler (Respondent) v Commissioners for […]
July 7, 2020

Rescission of judgments by SARS: Barnard Labuschagne Inc v SARS

The judgment deals with an application for rescission of a judgment by Barnard Labuschagne (Applicant), where SARS took judgment under the provisions of chapter 11 of the Tax Administration Act (TAA). SARS filed a certified statement in terms of Section 172 of the TAA with the Registrar of the Court, setting out an amount of liquid debt due by the Applicant in respect of PAYE, VAT, UIF and SDL, and payable to SARS. The Applicant is a law practice in the Western Cape and brought an application to rescind, based on various contentions. Over an extended time, the Applicant had […]
June 3, 2020

Can a third party collect my taxes?

Decisions of South Africa’s courts are an essential source of law. The courts uphold and enforce the Constitution and develop common law that is consistent with the values of the Constitution, and the spirit and purpose of the Bill of Rights. In a taxation context, court decisions assist in how legislation must be interpreted or confirm the rights and obligations of taxpayers and the South African Revenue Service alike. One, therefore, cannot appreciate the tax landscape, without having regard for the decisions of our courts. In SIP Project Managers (Pty) Ltd v CSARS (29 April 2020), the Gauteng Division of the High […]
June 3, 2020

Managing your startup capital

Becoming an entrepreneur is not as easy as waking up with an idea and having money thrown at you to turn it into a reality. Most successful entrepreneurs share the same sentiments – it takes many rejections and disappointments, and plenty of restarts. There are two things this article will explore; how to get startup capital, and how to manage it. 1. How to get the startup capital Your drive to become an entrepreneur should not be derived from wanting to have exactly what another entrepreneur has achieved. By virtue of your business idea being different, an opportunity to succeed […]
June 3, 2020

Understanding liquidations and tax deductions

Decisions of South Africa’s courts are an essential source of law. The courts uphold and enforce the Constitution and develop common law that is consistent with the values of the Constitution, and the spirit and purpose of the Bill of Rights. In a taxation context, court decisions assist in how legislation must be interpreted or confirm the rights and obligations of taxpayers and the South African Revenue Service alike. One, therefore, cannot appreciate the tax landscape, without having regard for the decisions of our courts. In CSARS v Pieters and others, the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) was tasked with deciding […]
June 3, 2020

The disclosing of taxpayer details

Decisions of South Africa’s courts are an essential source of law. The courts uphold and enforce the Constitution and develop common law that is consistent with the values of the Constitution, and the spirit and purpose of the Bill of Rights. In a taxation context, court decisions assist in how legislation must be interpreted or confirm the rights and obligations of taxpayers and the South African Revenue Service alike. One, therefore, cannot appreciate the tax landscape, without having regard for the decisions of our courts. In the case of the Commissioner for SARS vs Public Protector (23 March 2020) in […]
May 11, 2020

Tax law for employer transport services

In terms of the Tax Administration Act, the South African Revenue Service (“SARS”) can issue Binding General Rulings (“BGR”) on matters of general interest or importance and clarifies the Commissioner’s application or interpretation of the tax law relating to these matters. BGR 50 provides clarity on the so-called “no-value” provision in respect of the rendering of transport services by an employer to its employees. Background Employers may often provide employees with transport services from their homes to the place of employment. Although it typically applies where places of work are remote, such as in the farming or mining sectors, the […]