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Value-Added Tax Act, 1991 (Act No. 89 of 1991)

Part II : Value-Added Tax

15. Accounting basis

 

(1) Except as hereinafter provided, every vendor shall account for tax payable on an invoice basis for the purposes of section 16.

 

(2) Subject to the provisions of subsections (2A) and (3), the Commissioner may, on application in writing by a vendor, direct that the vendor account for the tax payable on a payments basis for the purposes of section 16 with effect from the vendor's registration in terms of this Act or, where he has accounted for tax payable on an invoice basis prior to making an application under this subsection, from the commencement of the tax period immediately following the tax period during which that direction is made by the Commissioner (hereinafter referred to as the changeover period), if—
(a) the vendor is—
(i) a public authority;
(ii) any water board or any other institution which has powers similar to those of any such board listed in Part B of Schedule 3 to the Public Finance Management Act, 1999 (Act No. 1 of 1999), which would have complied with the definition of "local authority" in section 1 prior to deletion of that definition by section 40(1)(i) of the Small Business Amnesty and Taxation Laws Act, 2006 (Act No. 9 of 2006);
(iii) [Section 15(2)(a)(iii) deleted by section 134(1)(a) of the Taxation Laws Amendment Act, 2015 (Act No. 25 of 2015)]
(iv) a "municipal entity" as defined in section 1 of the Local Government: Municipal Systems Act, 2000 (Act No. 32 of 2000), where that municipal entity supplies—
(aa) electricity, gas or water; or
(bb) the services consisting of the drainage, removal or disposal of sewage or garbage;
(v) a municipality;
(vi) an association not for gain;

[Section 15(2)(a)(vi) substituted by section 134(1)(b) of the Taxation Laws Amendment Act, 2015 (Act No. 25 of 2015)]

(vii) carrying on an enterprise as contemplated in paragraph (b)(vi) of the definition of "enterprise" in section 1; or
(viii) the South African Broadcasting Corporation Limited contemplated in section 8A of the Broadcasting Act, 1999 (Act No. 4 of 1999); or

[Section 15(2)(a)(viii) substituted by section 134(1)(c) of the Taxation Laws Amendment Act, 2015 (Act No. 25 of 2015)]

[Section 15(2)(a) substituted by section 13 of the Taxation Laws Second Amendment Act, 2007 (Act No. 9 of 2007)];

(b) the vendor is a natural person (other than the trustee of a trust fund) or an unincorporated body of persons of which all the members are natural persons, and—
(i) the total value of the vendor's taxable supplies in the period of 12 months ending at the end of any tax period has not exceeded R2,5 million; or
(ii) the total value of the vendor's taxable supplies in the period of 12 months beginning on the first day of any month is not likely to exceed the amount specified in subparagraph (i):

Provided that the provisions of this Act relating to the determination of the value of any supply of goods or services, whether such supply is made before or on or after the commencement date, shall apply for the purposes of this subsection, but no regard shall be had to any tax charged in respect of such supply.

 

(2A) Any vendor, other than—
(ii) a municipal entity as defined in section 1 of the Local Government: Municipal Systems Act, 2000 (Act No. 32 of 2000), where that municipal entity supplies—
(aa) electricity, gas or water; or
(bb) the services consisting of the drainage, removal or disposal of sewage or garbage; or
(iii) a municipality,

that in terms of subsection (2) accounts for tax payable on a payments basis shall, in respect of any supply of goods (other than fixed property) or services in respect of which the consideration in money is R100 000 or more, account for the tax payable on an invoice basis.

[Section 15(2A) substituted by section 85(1) of Act No. 15 of 2016]

 

(2B) Any vendor registered in terms of section 23(3)(b)(ii) shall account for tax payable on a payment basis for the purposes of section 16 with effect from the date of the vendor's registration: Provided that the vendor, subject to subsection (2)(b), must account for tax payable on an invoice basis from the commencement of the tax period immediately following the tax period when the total value of taxable supplies of that enterprise has exceeded R50 000.

 

(3) Where the Commissioner has under subsection (2) directed that a vendor account for tax payable on a payments basis, and—
(a) the vendor has ceased to satisfy the conditions of subsection (2) under which any such direction may be given, and—
(i) the vendor notifies the Commissioner thereof as required by section 25(c); or
(ii) the Commissioner is otherwise satisfied thereof; or
(b) the vendor has made an application in writing to the Commissioner to account for tax payable on an invoice basis,

the Commissioner shall direct that the vendor account for the tax payable on an invoice basis with effect from the commencement of a future tax period or, where the vendor has failed to notify the Commissioner that he has ceased to satisfy the conditions of subsection (2), as required by the said section 25(c), any tax period directed by the Commissioner: Provided that for the purposes of paragraph (a) any such vendor shall not cease to satisfy the requirements of subsection (2) where the total value of the vendor's taxable supplies has exceeded or, as the case may be, will exceed the amount specified for the purposes of subsection (2)(b) solely as a consequence of—

(aa) any cessation of or any substantial and permanent reduction in the size or scale of any enterprise carried on by the vendor, or
(bb) the replacement of any plant or other capital asset used in any enterprise carried on by the vendor, or
(cc) abnormal circumstances of a temporary nature.

 

(4) Where a vendor changes from an invoice basis to a payments basis or from a payments basis to an invoice basis he shall furnish to the Commissioner particulars in the prescribed form calculating the tax payable or refundable in respect of the change in the basis of accounting.

 

(5) Any vendor to whom subsection (4) applies shall, within the time allowed under this Act for the payment of tax in respect of the tax period immediately preceding the changeover period, pay to the Commissioner the tax payable as calculated in accordance with this section: Provided that where a vendor changes from payments basis to an invoice basis for the sole reason that such vendor is not a natural person (other than a trustee of a trust fund) or an unincorporated body of persons of which all the members are natural persons, the vendor shall pay to the Commissioner the tax payable as calculated in accordance with this section in equal instalments within the period allowed under this Act for the payment of tax in respect of so many tax periods as the Commissioner may allow, the last of which shall not end on a date later than 10 March 1999.

 

(6) Where a vendor changes from an invoice basis to a payments basis, the tax payable shall, for the purposes of subsection (5), be—
(a) an amount equal to the aggregate of the input tax deducted under section 16(3) in relation to the tax periods up to and including the tax period immediately preceding the changeover period, to the extent that that amount exceeds the aggregate amount of input tax that would have been deducted if the vendor had, for those tax periods, been accounting for tax payable on a payments basis,

reduced by—

(b) an amount equal to the aggregate of the output tax accounted for under section 16(3) in relation to the tax period up to and including the tax period immediately preceding the changeover period, to the extent that that amount exceeds the aggregate amount of output tax that would have been accounted for if the vendor had, for those tax periods, been accounting for tax payable on a payments basis.

 

(7) Where a vendor changes from a payments basis to an invoice basis, the tax payable shall, for the purposes of subsection (5), be—
(a) an amount equal to the aggregate amount of output tax that would have been accounted for under section 16(3) if the vendor had, in relation to the tax periods up to and including the tax period immediately preceding the changeover period, been accounting for tax payable on an invoice basis, to the extent that that amount exceeds the aggregate of the output tax accounted for in those tax periods,

reduced by—

(b) an amount equal to the aggregate amount of input tax that would have been deducted under section 16(3) if the vendor had, in relation to the tax periods up to and including the tax period immediately preceding the changeover period, been accounting for tax payable on an invoice basis, to the extent that that amount of input tax exceeds the aggregate amount of input tax deducted in those tax periods.

 

(8) If, in relation to any particulars required to be furnished under subsection (4)—
(a) the amount referred to in subsection (6)(b) exceeds the amount referred to in subsection (6)(a); or
(b) the amount referred to in subsection (7)(b) exceeds the amount referred to in subsection (7)(a),

the amount of the excess shall be refundable to the vendor by the Commissioner in respect of the changeover period as provided in Chapter 13 of the Tax Administration Act, read with section 16(5).

 

(9) Where a vendor's basis of accounting is changed as contemplated in subsection (2) or (3), the vendor shall prepare lists of debtors and creditors in relation to the vendor's enterprise showing the amounts owing by such debtors and the amounts owing to such creditors as at the end of the tax period immediately preceding the changeover period.