S.Africa: Taxpayer wins case against SARS’ failure to issue a Letter of Findings at the conclusion of a tax audit
I am pleased to inform you that a recent tax case I argued in PE (with colleagues Strombeck Pieterse Attorneys) was won with costs against SARS. The case has been redacted due to it being argued in the Tax Court:
Simply put, the main issue was that SARS failed to issue a letter of findings at the conclusion of an audit (ss 40 and 42), and so the court set aside the assessment with costs against SARS.
The assessment was raised based on a high retrenchment package for a CEO, SARS said was taxable (in excess of R7m), and adding back of substantial farming expenses, SARS said were not deductible. These issues were not advanced in the judgment due to SARS failure to adhere to the peremptory administrative procedures prescribed in the Tax Administration Act.
This is thus a significant judgment in administrative/constitutional law as it applies to tax and the raising of assessments.
In South Africa www.taxrisk.co.za offers low cost insurance to fund the representation of taxpayer’s put into a similar situation by SARS failing to adhere to administrative rules at the time of an audit.
Dr. Daniel N Erasmus
Independent Tax Counsel –
A TPA Global Member
TP and other international & domestic tax litigation; US Tax Court; South Africa; Zimbabwe; Tanzania; and other African countries