The Tax Administration Laws Amendment Bill of 2015 and its amendment to Section 99 of the Tax Administration Act 28 of 2011 (the “Act”)

According to Section 99 of the Act, further assessments  by SARS were limited  to a period of three years after issuance of its first assessment, and five years after the date of a taxpayer’s self-assessment; a so-called prescription period for SARS assessments.   However, in terms of the Memorandum published earlier this year, SARS is faced with complex disputes and interpretations of the tax provisions, and is expending a number of its resources to ensure that it has all relevant information at its disposal before making its assessments. SARS therefore finds it difficult, if not impossible, in certain circumstances, to meet the prescription deadlines. The proposed amendments seek to address these difficulties by allowing SARS to extend the prescription period provided for in Section 99 of the Act, on notice to the taxpayer, which notice must not be less than 30 days before expiry thereof.

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