Guiding consumers since 2009

Revised bill for tax advisers published

By Staff Writer

Sanchia Temkin

Professional Services Editor

AUDITORS and lawyers who give tax advice would not be subject to the disciplinary procedures of a new independent regulatory board for tax practitioners to be established under new tax laws.

“However, such tax advisers will still be required to register under the revised Draft Regulation Tax Practitioners Bill,” said South African Revenue Service (SARS) legislative policy GM Franz Tomasek yesterday.

Following a lengthy consultative process with tax practitioners and other stakeholders in which SARS had considered comments, the revised bill was released yesterday for comment.

Nearly 23000 tax practitioners are registered with SARS.

As far back as 2002, Finance Minister Trevor Manuel indicated that tax practitioners would be regulated. There are no overall requirements, such as a code of conduct, that stop people from being tax practitioners.

The purpose of the legislation is to promote better compliance and ensure that taxpayers receive advice which is consistent with SA’s tax laws.

There were too many unscrupulous practitioners who were prejudicing taxpayers and had given the accounting and legal profession a bad name.

As a preliminary step, tax practitioners had to register with SARS in 2005. This phase provided information on existing advisers with regard to their qualifications, experience and membership of existing bodies, such as the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants, and the Law Society of SA.

Last year SARS released the draft Regulation of Tax Practitioners Bill. Comments from stakeholders were taken into account and the bill had since been refined and revised.

Tax practitioners were up in arms last year over a provision contained in the draft bill for tax advisers who uncover fraud and other tax irregularities related to their clients to report them to the regulatory board.

The concept enjoys a precedent in the Auditing Profession Act which provides for similar obligations. Tomasek said the concept of a reportable irregularity would not be pursued in the revised bill.

The revised bill creates an independent regulatory board for tax practitioners which ensures that the professional ethics of advisers are maintained, and will institute disciplinary proceedings against practitioners who do not comply with standards set by the board.

The board will also prescribe standards for qualification.

Recent Articles

Featured What to do when you’ve been denied a home loan

After months of scanning property sites and attending showhouse after showhouse, you’ve finally found what you’ve been looking for. But your dream of owning a home comes crumbling down when you receive the news that you’ve been denied a home loan. So, what now?

Can your retirement annuity be used as collateral for a loan?

If you have a retirement annuity, you may have wondered whether you can use this as collateral when you take out a loan. We decided to do the leg work and find out whether this is possible or not.

Best travel cards offered by top South African banks

Planning a trip abroad involves a lot of administration. You need to consider travelling arrangements, reasonable accommodation, and a daily itinerary. But have you considered how you’re going to pay your bills once you arrive? Besides considering bank costs, you also need to consider exchange rates.

Best ways to save your money short-term

For many, it seems close to impossible to save when spending on holiday getaways, Christmas gifts, while also trying to ensure there’s money left to survive January. Justmoney takes a look at the best ways you can save during the short term.

Deals

Marble Gift Card Special

Price: From R1000
When: Until 25 December 2019
Where: Johannesburg

Trennerys Hotel and Camping Januworry Special

Price: R950
When: From 10 to 31 January 2020
Where: Centane (Eastern Cape)

Bakwena Standard Packages Special

Price: From R999
When: Until 31 December 2019
Where: Nationwide