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1 Common input tax mistake and how to avoid it

by , 15 April 2016
Many believe they've got input tax nailed. But the reality is that unnecessary mistakes continue to be made over and over again. And SARS doesn't take too kindly to these.

If you don't claim your input tax correctly, SARS will not only deny your input tax claim, but they'll also dish out harsh penalties and fines, with interest!

In this article, we'll look at 1 common, yet completely unnecessary, input tax mistake, as well as how you can avoid it.

Let's take a look...

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If you claim input tax, your SARS VAT audit is impending
 
And when the SARS auditor comes knocking or sends a query, he'll check if:
 
·         Your books and records comply with the requirements of Section 55 of the VAT Act;
·         You didn't claim on exempt supplies;
·         Any of your claims were for non-taxable supplies;
·         You apportioned inputs correctly and at the right tax rate (Sections 16, 17 and 20 of the VAT Act);
·         And more!
 
But the truth is, even if you're entitled to your claim, but don't have the valid documentation, he'll still reverse your deduction!
 
Here's everything you need to secure every input tax claim you submit.

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Input tax mistake: Trying to claim input tax without supporting documents.
 
You'd be surprised at how many people get this wrong.
 
An example can be found in the case of South Atlantic Jazz Festival (SAJF) vs. SARS
 
SARS refused to give them any input tax, on the services they received from their sponsors, because they couldn't produce any tax invoices for them.
 
And even though they eventually did claim input tax, they had to first go through a whole court process, which could have been avoided!
 
So what's the message here?
 
It's all very clear. You need to produce valid tax invoices to SARS when claiming input tax.
 
If you don't have the tax invoice, or if it's not valid, then you can't claim the credit. And if you do claim input tax without a valid tax invoice, then SARS will go ahead charging you understatement penalties of at least 25% of the VAT you claimed on the invalid tax invoice.
 

*So be warned that, without valid tax invoices, your ignorance will more than likely not suffice when it comes to claiming input tax from SARS.
 
PS: If you want to learn all there is to know about input tax, simply page over to Chapter I 03 in your Practical Vat Loose Leaf Service handbook, or click here to order your copy today.
 
With it, you'll have access to all VAT issues, and not just input tax. It's an invaluable VAT resource! So if you don't already have it, click here.  

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