The South African Revenue Services (SARS) has today, 2 July 2018, issued the long awaited service charter which has been outstanding since 2005.
“SAICA welcomes the commitments expressed therein as well as the quick actions resulting from the Acting Commissioner’s undertakings,” says Pieter Faber, SAICA Senior Executive: Tax. “We hope that these commitments will be added to SARS’ performance scorecard so that these undertakings of service can be actively tracked by the public, the SARS Commissioner and the Minister of Finance so that proper interventions may be implemented should the deviations be material. SAICA sees this as a step in the right direction in regaining the public trust and restoring SARS’ reputation as an institution of high regard.”
“We do, however, express concern that SARS merely endeavours rather than feels compelled to keep to legally imposed dispute time periods and also that service complaints are still only targeted to be resolved in 21 business days (i.e. a month). The latter, in our view, should be more ambitious and in most instances should be 7-14 days so that it showcases SARS as a professional institution that takes taxpayer service levels seriously,” adds Faber.
SARS have also maintained momentum on their commitment to improve taxpayer communication to facilitate voluntary compliance by taxpayers. As part of improving communication, SARS have added the following supplementary notifications for Personal Income Tax (PIT) audits, namely, acknowledgement of Receipt of Supporting Documents and Reminder for supporting documents.
“We hope this rollout and good initiative will be extended to all taxes and taxpayers soon and further expanded on, including acknowledgement of submission of returns,” concludes Faber.