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Tax Administration Act, 2011 (Act No. 28 of 2011)

Notices

Rules Promulgated under section 103 of the Tax Administration Act, 2011 (Act No. 28 of 2011)

Part B : Reasons for assessment, objection, appeal and test cases

12. Test cases

 

(1) A senior SARS official must upon designating an objection or appeal as a test case or staying a similar objection or appeal by reason of a designation under section 106(6) of the Act, inform the taxpayers or appellants accordingly by notice before—
(a) the objection is decided under rule 9;
(b) if the appeal is to be dealt with by the tax board, a decision by the chairperson of the tax board is given under section 114; or
(c) if the appeal is to be dealt with by the tax court, the appeal is heard by the tax court.

 

(2) The notice must set out—
(a) the number of and common issues involved in the objections or appeals that the test case is likely to be determinative of;
(b) the question of law or fact or both law and fact that, subject to the augmentation thereof under rule 34, constitute the issues to be determined by the test case; and
(c) the importance of the test case to the administration of the relevant tax Act.

 

(3) The taxpayer or appellant concerned may within 30 days of delivery of the notice, deliver a notice—
(a) opposing the decision that an objection or appeal is designated as a test case;
(b) opposing the decision that an objection or appeal is stayed pending the final determination of a test case on a similar objection or appeal before the tax court; or
(c) if the objection or appeal is to be stayed, requesting a right of participation in the test case,

which notice must set out the grounds of opposition or for participation, as the case may be.

 

(4) If no notice under subrule (3) is received by SARS, the designation of the test case or suspension of the objection or appeal by reason of the designation is regarded as final.

 

(5) Within 30 days after receipt of a notice under subrule (3) a senior SARS official may—
(a) withdraw the decision to select the objection or appeal as a test case or to stay the objection or appeal pending the outcome of a test case;
(b) agree that a taxpayer or appellant requesting participation may do so; or
(c) apply to the tax court under Part F for an order under rule 52.

 

(6)        The stay of an objection or appeal terminates on the date of the—

(a) expiry of the 30 day period prescribed under subrule (5), if a taxpayer or appellant has delivered a notice under subrule (3) and the senior SARS official has not within the 30 day period withdrawn the decision under subrule (5)(a) or made an application under subrule (5)(c);
(b) delivery of the notice by the official that the decision has been withdrawn under subrule (5)(a);
(c) agreement between the taxpayer or appellant and the official that the stay of the objection or appeal is terminated; or
(d) dismissal by the tax court, or higher court dealing with an appeal against the decision of the tax court under rule 52, of an application by the official under subrule (5)(c).

 

(7) For the period during which an objection or appeal is stayed under section 106(6)(b)—
(a) a period prescribed under these rules (other than under this rule) in relation to the objection or appeal does not apply; and
(b) if the staying of an objection or appeal terminates, a period prescribed under these rules is treated as if the period was extended by the same period that the suspension of the objection or appeal was in effect.

 

(8) Proceedings in an objection or appeal under these rules which have been instituted but not determined by the tax board, tax court or any other court of law are stayed with effect from delivery of the notice under subrule (1) until the stay of an objection or appeal is terminated under subrule (6).

 

(9) A test case designated under section 106(6) must be heard by the tax court constituted under section 118(5) and if not so designated, the tax court constituted under section 118(1).

 

(10) For purposes of a cost order by the tax court, or higher court dealing with an appeal against the judgment of the tax court, in a test case designated under section 106(6), the appellants in the test case include:
(a) the appellant whose appeal was selected as the test case; and
(b) a taxpayer or appellant who participated in the test case.

 

(11) In the event that a tax court under section 130, or a higher court dealing with an appeal against the judgment of the tax court in the test case, awards costs and—
(a) SARS is substantially successful in a test case, the appellants in the test case will be responsible for their legal costs on the proportionate basis as may be determined by the tax court; or
(b) the appellants are substantially successful in a test case, SARS will be liable for the legal costs of the appellants and the taxpayers whose objections or appeals were stayed on the proportionate basis as may be determined by the tax court.