Over the weekend we went to a fireworks display staged by one of the recent British Fireworks champions. Being a fireworks lover it was such a treat for me after months of “lockdown” and I must say it was incredibly spectacular. Over 15 000 fireworks lit up our gorgeous night sky and, at times, it seemed like the sky was almost melting. It truly was an amazing experience.
Seems like SARS is also lighting up a few fire crackers though and following the money! Primarily in the line of fire right now are the expats! The Expat Exemption clause (Section 10(1)(o)(ii)) in the Income Tax Act kicked off on 1 March 2020. Although it looked like a bit of a damp squib SARS has started to audit expats and is asking very probing questions.
Remembering, of course, that they already have access to all your banking information and the SARB and your bank have access to your offshore banking arrangements (if they really want it) through FATCA and CRS it seems like a good time to make sure all your SARS tax returns are up to date and accurate.
Ignoring SARS has never been a good idea! Just because you “got on a plane and left” doesn’t mean you are home free. In fact, quite the opposite. There has never been a better time to “dot the i’s and cross the t’s”!
Revenue authorities worldwide are desperate for cash and SARS is no exception! They are on a mission to make sure they get EVERYTHING they feel is due to them and then some! Fortunately they have had a few run ins with the Tax Ombudsman who is tending to ensure that SARS plays be the rules. That being said, getting to the point where you can approach the Tax Ombud is a time consuming and potentially costly exercise.
So, if you have any doubts about where you stand, whether you are classified as an expat or not, whether (and how) you can benefit from a Double Tax Agreement or indeed, whether or not you should financially migrate before that door is modified on 1 March 2021 then give us a call on +44 7511 540881 or mail me on email@example.com. Generally the first chat is free so you have nothing to lose. In the words of Nike’s slogan “JUST DO IT”.