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Do you store your company's accounting records electronically? Make sure they meet these three requirements

by , 15 August 2014
The great thing about technology is it's made running a business so much easier.

When it comes to keeping accounting records for example, you no longer have to store your documents in boxes. Nowadays you store everything electronically.

This is all good and well. It's great to move with the times.

The only thing we want to bring to your attention is, if you keep accounting records electronically you must meet three requirements. Read on to find out what these are so you can comply and avoid penalties.

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Three requirements for keeping accounting records electronically
 

Requirement #1: The information must remain complete and unaltered, except for the addition of any endorsement and any change that arises in the normal course of communication, storage and display.

Requirement #2: Your records must be easily accessible to SARS. They must be in a format SARS can read and analyse. If you send documents to SARS, it must be able to open them without difficulty, says the Practical Accountancy Loose Leaf Service.

Requirement #3: You must make your records available to SARS for it to get any information that could be related to a taxable event or to see if you've filed or submitted your returns correctly (section 3 of the Tax Admin Act).

This means you must keep and maintain all your records within South Africa. If you can't, you must get permission from a senior SARS official to store them outside of South Africa. For example, if your company's a branch of a foreign head office.

If you fail to stick to these requirements, you'll have penalties coming your way. So make sure the way you keep accounting records is above board now that you know the requirements.
 

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