Monthly Archives: July 2017

MSI Global Alliance appoints two new member firms in Brazil and Denmark

MSI Global Alliance, one of the world’s leading international associations of independent legal and accounting firms, is delighted to announce the appointment of two new member firms to its international membership as of 1 July 2017.

MSI’s presence in Brazil will be strengthened by the addition of DDSA – De Luca, Derenusson, Schuttoff e Azevedo Advogados (DDSA) in Brazil. Based in Sao Paulo, DDSA is a full service law firm which provides comprehensive services in areas such as corporate law, tax law, M&A and contracts, compliance, aviation, infrastructure, real estate, insurance law, litigation, bankruptcy and reorganization, as well as employment, social security and environment law.Established in 2011, the 11 partner-firm and its highly experienced team of 45 staff advises and acts for national and international clients from a wide range of industries.Also joining MSI is accounting firm Piaster located in Copenhagen, Denmark. Founded in 2005, the four partner firm provides a wide range of services within audit, assurance, tax, vat, compilation and compliance as well as advisory services to an international client base.

Piaster will be replacing MSI’s existing Danish accounting member Wyrwik – Statsautoriseret Revisionsanpartsselskab (Wyrwik). Both firms have enjoyed a long-standing business relationship over the years. Wyrwik’s managing partner, Lisbeth Wyrwik, introduced Piaster to MSI and will continue to work closely with both Piaster and MSI in her role as one of the international contact partners for Piaster.

Tim Wilson, chief executive of MSI, comments, “I am very pleased to welcome our new members to MSI. DDSA is a strong, established law firm, which will complement our existing presence in Brazil and further strengthen MSI in Latin America. I am also very pleased to welcome Piaster, a dynamic and ambitious accounting firm, which will maintain strong links with Wyrwik thereby enabling us to build on MSI’s strength in Denmark.”

MSI Global Alliance
Pauline Rottstock, Marketing and Business Development Manager
Tel: +44 20 7583 7000
Email: prottstock@msiglobal.org

About MSI Global Alliance
MSI is one of the world’s leading international associations of independent legal and accounting firms. With over 250 carefully selected member firms in more than 100 countries, MSI is one of the world’s leading associations of independent legal and accounting firms. MSI was formed in 1990 in response to the growing need for cross-border co-operation between professional services firms.
www.msiglobal.org

Newtons receives award at ABASA Free State Branch FQE Dinner

Newtons is very proud to have received the “Most Supportive Firm Award” at this year’s ABASA FQE Dinner. The FQE Dinner is a yearly event where black successfull candidates passing qualifying exams in the field of Accounting are honoured. Not only did the firm receive an award, Siseko Tose, current chairman of the ABASA Free State Branch also received an award for being the “Most Involved Member”. Two previous Newtons Trainee Accountants also received awards for passing their SAIPA Professional Evaluation, Luzanne Harmse and Thembakazi Kojana. Thank you also to our other Newtons employees attending the dinner to support them.

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At the back from left to right is: Thembakazi Kojana, Luzanne Harmse, Anzé Pienaar, Anette van Heerden, De-Jay Ferris. Front from left to right: Siseko Tose, Gershwin Engelbrecht and Jane Motshabi.

 

 

Congratulations successfull SAIPA Professional Exam Candidates!

Newtons is extremely proud to announce that the following trainee accountants have successfully passed their SAIPA Professional Evaluation:

Thembakazi Kojana, Sharidon Williams, Luzanne Harmse and Eric Salley.

“It always seems impossible, until it is done.” – Nelson Mandela

We wish you every success in your careers!

SAIPA PE 2017

The 2017 tax season is open

The Commissioner for SARS recently published the annual notice to officially ‘open’ the 2017 tax season. Individuals are now able to file their annual income tax returns for the 2017 year of assessment (which ended on 28 February 2017) from 1 July, and we request that our clients contact us so that we can arrange for the necessary. The following time frames will apply:

  • For a company, within 1 year of its year-end (for example, a company with a financial year-end of 31 March 2017 is required to submit its 2017 tax return by 31 March 2018);
  • For all other taxpayers (including natural persons and trusts), returns are to be submitted at the latest by:
    • 22 September 2017 for persons still making use of manual hardcopy returns;
    • 24 November 2017 for persons (excluding taxpayers registered for provisional tax) making use of SARS’ eFiling system; and
    • 31 January 2018 for all provisional taxpayers making use of SARS’ eFiling system.

As was the case in previous years, companies may only file returns using eFiling – manual returns are not allowed in terms of the above SARS notice.

Not all individuals are required to submit income tax returns. Various criteria are listed which, only if any of these are met, means that a person is obliged to submit a return to SARS.  For example, all companies, whether incorporated in South Africa or not, are obliged to submit returns if South Africa is the place from which the company is effectively managed.  Non-tax resident companies, but which were incorporated in South Africa, must also render returns, as well as non-tax resident companies incorporated outside of the Republic and earning income from a South African source.

Taxpayers (excluding companies) are required to submit returns if they carried on any trade in South Africa during the 2016 tax year. This does not include the mere earning of a salary. A variety of other factors are listed in terms of which non-company taxpayers are required to submit returns. The main exemption from having to submit a return for tax resident natural persons though is if the person earned only a salary from a single employer during the year which did not exceed R350,000, and income from interest for that person was also less than R23,800 (or R34,500 if the person is older than 65).

Quite a number of taxpayers are therefore potentially exempt from the requirement to submit an income tax return, even if registered for income tax purposes. However, even though it may in terms of the notice not be required to submit a tax return, it may still be beneficial to do so. Natural person taxpayers are often under the unfortunate impression that the completion of a return necessarily gives rise to the incidence of tax.  This is of course not so and many may have suffered tax consequences during the year already by having amounts deducted from salaries in the form of pay-as-you-earn contributions deducted from their salaries. This of course amounts to a mere cash flow mechanism introduced to ensure a steady supply of cash to the fiscus and which contributions are set-off from the annual tax liability when the annual tax return submitted is assessed. However, the opportunity to negate this is presented through the completion of a tax return and claiming deductible expenses in the form of e.g. medical aid or pension fund contributions. The principle in this regard is that all income is taxable irrespective of whether a return is completed or not. However deductions can only be claimed by completing a tax return and natural persons specifically should jump at the opportunity to do so.

This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied upon as professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your financial adviser for specific and detailed advice.  Errors and omissions excepted (E&OE)

When it comes to strategy, think big

To create a strategic roadmap for your business you don’t need heaps of wonderful resources; you only need to give up your preconceived ideas about strategy. Sometimes the thing that holds a small business back the most is small thinking. If you believe that the size of your business is a disadvantage when it comes to strategic planning, simply because the big companies have all the financial resources and manpower to influence the market, then why start a business at all? Fortunately, money or size of personnel is not what counts when you create a strategic plan – common sense is.

Keep your enthusiasm in check

You don’t need to strategise constantly; rather make sure that you understand the market conditions and that you have attainable goals – don’t waste time on too much planning. You could also try using your company’s small size to out-manoeuvre larger, slower companies by addressing challenges and options and seizing opportunities over short but regular spaces of time.

Challenge assumptions

Believing in the status quo is not part of a successful entrepreneur’s strategy. The business climate is constantly changing with the help of the Internet, social media and other mobile devices. Many companies have landed on the business rubbish dump because they could not adapt to changing times. Question everything. Attempt playing devil’s advocate with your new ideas, then get your team together and devise plans to make the idea viable. Ignore preconceived notions about what can or cannot work – while some business principles are a given, very few business ideas are completely useless.

Avoid myopia

You can build a sales strategy based on the outcome you desire. Don’t miss out on good opportunities because you are too caught up in day-to-day activities to think outside the box and re-examine your progress. Change your perspective and get your team to think in more creative, profitable ways.

Jack (or Jane) be nimble, eager and bold

The market and the needs of customers keep changing, and it’s beyond your control. What you can control, however, is how you adjust to these changes and what new plans you create. Be bold in your new approach and keep an open mind as to the unconventional ways in which to grow.

This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied upon as professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your financial adviser for specific and detailed advice.  Errors and omissions excepted (E&OE)

Beware of Capital Gains Tax when you emigrate

While many people immigrate to South Africa, we also see many of our clients emigrating from South Africa. And while formal migration-status is not necessarily linked to tax residency, the time of tax migration often coincides with formal emigration linked to passport or visum status. Many are surprised to learn (often after the fact) that emigration for tax residency purposes gives rise to tax consequences in South Africa, and specifically to capital gains tax (“CGT”) consequences in the form of so-called “exit charges”.

In essence, section 9H of the Income Tax Act, 58 of 1962, determines that when a person ceases to be tax resident in South Africa, that person is deemed to have disposed of all his or her assets on the day that the individual emigrates for income tax purposes. In other words, in calculating their income tax exposure, individuals emigrating for tax purposes are regarded as having sold all of their assets at market value on the day before that on which they leave the country. As a result, a capital gain is realised on this deemed disposal that is subject to CGT at the prevailing tax rates. Currently, 40% of capital gains so realised by individuals are included in their annual taxable income, which amount may be subject to tax at rates of as high as 45%.

The policy justification for taxing individuals upon emigration is that taxes are to be levied on all capital growth achieved on assets owned by South African residents while they were tax resident. Once an individual will have emigrated, limited mechanisms would exist whereby capital gains may only be realised upon eventual actual sale of assets subsequently once the individuals are no longer tax resident in South Africa. (It is for this reason that South African immovable property is excluded from the “exit charges” regime; section 35A of the Income Tax Act provides for a withholding tax mechanism whereby CGT may be recovered from non-residents when they sell South African immovable property.)

While one may have sympathy for the policy justification for the levying of “exit charges”, it must be recognised that any deemed disposal of assets necessarily creates a cash flow conundrum for the individuals affected, quite often proving prohibitive for wealthy individuals seeking to emigrate. It is quite possible that assets of individuals emigrating may consist mainly of illiquid assets such as share investments. Upon emigration, these very assets may need to be actually disposed of in order to raise sufficient cash resources to be able to pay the resultant CGT that would have been payable on a deemed disposal of those assets at emigration.

This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied upon as professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your financial adviser for specific and detailed advice.  Errors and omissions excepted (E&OE)