The new SARS solar energy tax credit

The tax credit for individuals installing solar panels is here, for a limited time only. The proposed new law regarding the tax credit available to individuals who install solar panels has been announced. The system will be introduced in the form of a tax credit, as opposed to a tax deduction. This is good news, […]

Beware the ‘Ides of SARS’

Telephonic audits are on the rise. “A SOOTHSAYER bids you beware the ides of March”.  These famous Shakespearean words forewarning the misfortune of Roman emperor Julius Caesar (which Caesar ultimately ignored and led to his demise) may not be as archaic as appears at first sight—especially in the realm of tax, and when SARS’ new […]

When SARS requests supporting documents

E-filing doesn’t allow ‘secured’ or password-protected documents to be uploaded—but there is a solution Following SARS Commissioner Edward Kieswetter’s announcement that he intends to rebuild SARS’ enforcement capabilities as part of his quest to become the scourge of recalcitrant taxpayers, there has been a noticeable increase in requests from SARS for the submission of supporting […]

Bribes, penalties, and fines: Don’t expect help from SARS

Deductions are disallowed under Section 23(o)—but it’s not quite cut and dried… The meeting went on longer than you expected, and now you’re rushing to get to your next appointment.  It’s a new client, and a successful deal will be lucrative both for your company and this month’s commission cheque. But not five minutes after […]

Anti-avoidance rules take preference in zero or low-interest loans

The in duplum rule originated from the South African common law and has been applied through South African case law for over 100 years. The rule aims to protect borrowers from exploitation by lenders that allow and, in some cases, cause interest to accumulate unabated: leading borrowers into further indebtedness. In terms of the common law, the interest charged on a […]

Farming operations: Tax implications

Farming in South Africa is like second nature to most South Africans, but the tax implications on farming operations seem to raise some questions when determining a taxpayer’s taxable income. The taxation of farming operations is subject to a unique set of taxation rules. SARS requires that all income and expenses relating to farming operations […]

Capital gain: Calculating your foreign currency

With the fast approaching 2019 tax season, taxpayers who have realised a capital gain in a foreign currency should take note of the special rules that apply to the translation of those gains to Rand. Generally, there are two ways of translating a capital gain or loss into Rand – a “simple method” and a […]

VAT regulations dealing with the supply of electronic services

Since 2015, foreign suppliers of electronic services (such as audio-visual content, e-books etc.) in South Africa are deemed to operate an enterprise for VAT locally. Although the regime has been in place for several years, new regulations in this regard are continuously published, the latest being on 18 March 2019, with an effective date of […]

Transitional rules for interest payable by SARS

The South African income tax system is not cash-based. This means that a person can effectively be taxed on amounts that they have not yet received in cash, but that merely accrued to them within a year of assessment. Cash is also not a requirement to trigger tax – any “amount” that a person receives […]

Taxpayers’ right to have disputes resolved

In a recent Tax Court decision[1], the Tax Court confirmed that taxpayers have a right to have their disputes resolved in a court of law as enunciated in section 34 of the Constitution. However, they cannot rely on this right when they are using delaying tactics to prevent the matter from being heard. In this […]