Tax Compliance – does SARS make it more difficult?

Tax Compliance – does SARS make it more difficult?


The other day I had to go to a branch of the South African Revenue Service to hand in a certified copy of my identity document.

The alternative to handing the document in is normally to upload the document on e-filing. However, for some inexplicable reason, this facility was not made available to me.

I stood in a queue at the SARS office waiting to state my business to the receptionist, after which I was told to take a number. A notice board in the reception area stated that the waiting time was four hours. When I queried this with the receptionist she replied “Wherever you go you have to queue”. The gentleman who handed me my number confirmed that I would indeed have to wait four hours to be attended to. Four hours to hand in a document! That’s half a day of production lost to the economy.

Tax Compliance – does SARS make it more difficult?

I looked at the people waiting patiently for their number to be called, there must have been at least two hundred of them, individual tax-payers, book-keepers, financial managers, tax consultants, business-people.  I marvelled at their dedication to tax compliance.

Then a thought occurred to me. Why is SARS not doing more to encourage tax compliance? Why are they not making it easier for people to comply? Indeed, why are they not rewarding the compliant tax payers in this country? In the current economy our tax revenues are down, so we should be making life easier for tax payers, not more difficult.

Modern times are not so modern

We are in the age of technology and information, and have been for a couple of decades. Everything is supposed to be easier and faster. In fact, SARS were making great progress in this area at one stage, but that seems to have come to a halt. In all my years in business, I have never before had to wait four hours to be served at a SARS office.

Then, another thought occurred to me.  If I utilised the services of an outsourced financial manager, the lengthy wait would be his or her headache, not mine.

Financial Management- Outsource it

At Leaders Business Solutions we offer Outsourced Financial Management solutions, in addition, or along-side back end office support services to alleviate your Financial Management and other management issues.

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