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Thread: Proatia Manual

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    Proatia Manual

    Just received this email and thought I would share it with you.

    As every single company in South Africa must have such a manual by 31 December this year, I thought that I’d share this information with you.

    Who must have a Proatia Manual?

    1. A sole practitioner;
    2. A partnership;
    3. Private companies and close corporations.

    So, if you run a business you need a Proatia Manual!

    4 Things you must put in your manual

    1. All the company’s details: Postal address; telephone and fax numbers; and website address;
    2. All available records as required by legislations, e.g. the Companies Act requires a Fixed Asset Register.
    3. Request procedures, i.e. how a person must go about requesting information on your company; and
    4. Fees involved around the request, copies, postage, etc.

    Who can compile a Proatia Manual?

    Anyone can compile a Proatia Manual – you don’t have to outsource this to your accountant or auditor - but the information officer must sign off on it and remain responsible for maintenance, updates and dealing with requests.

    Your information officer must sign off your manual

    A great source of confusion is about the information officer and who can be the information officer:
    • If you run a sole proprietorship, you (or anyone you appoint) will be the information officer.

    Example

    Joe Soap runs his own graphic design business from home and he operates as a sole proprietor. He will be the information officer for his business or he can appoint his wife, Mary Soap, as the information officer.
    • If you’re part of a partnership, you, your partner or anyone you appoint can be the information officer.

    Example

    Harry and Mark are partners in a law firm. The firm is run as a partnership. Either Harry or Mark can be the information officer for the firm. Alternatively, they can appoint a friend of theirs to be the information officer.
    • If you’re the CEO or managing director of a company, you (or someone you appoint) must be the information officer.

    Example

    Mary Stone runs a textile factory – Mary’s Textiles (Pty) Ltd. Because she’s extremely busy, she doesn’t have time to be the company’s information officer. Mary appoints her company’s financial director – Amy – to be the information officer for the company.

    What’s going to happen to you if you don’t have a Proatia Manual by 31 December?

    Very simple: The information officer could find himself behind bars for the next two years.


    I would appreciate it if you shared your thoughts on this.

    EDIT: Proatia template document attached below:
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Last edited by Dave A; 01-Dec-11 at 10:32 AM. Reason: attachment of Proatia template

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    Blurock (21-Nov-11), Georgie1 (08-Dec-11), rfnel (08-Dec-11), wynn (22-Nov-11)

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    Diamond Member Blurock's Avatar
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    Thank you for the good explanation. This sounds much more complicated than it really is. I think the word "manual" as used by SARS will put a mental block on most of us.

    All businesses are required to keep proper records. All that is required now is to keep all the relevant information and documentation in one place and recorded in one document. Just open a file and put it in your safe or strong room for easy reference when required.

    Whether this will be policed or enforced is another question.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blurock View Post
    All businesses are required to keep proper records. All that is required now is to keep all the relevant information and documentation in one place and recorded in one document. Just open a file and put it in your safe or strong room for easy reference when required.
    But don't you have to keep copies with the HRC too?

    This is another bit of non-practical legislation. How can they possibly say that all trading sole proprietors must comply? Are they going to send Molly on the corner of our street to jail because she's selling sweets to pedestrians, and hasn't registered her PAIA manual? Yeah right.

    Then I am a under the impression that this Act is being managed by the SAHRC. A quick trip to their website and I can't find any useful information on who must or how one must comply or by when. Their FAQ page takes you to their home page and their links on their compliance page don't work.

    There is so much confusion over this Act due to the Government continually changing its mind that I'll adopt a wait and see attitude.

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Aren't government departments supposed to have these Protia manuals too? I've been hunting around the SARS website and I can't find one

    ps. I used to know them as PAIA manuals.
    Last edited by Dave A; 22-Nov-11 at 04:39 PM.
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    Good day Dave,

    I spoke to David Malesa @ SAHRC (011) 877-3627

    PAIA manuals needs to be signed by the Information Officers and emailed/delivered to David Malesa @ dmalesa@sahrc.org.za

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    Moderator IanF's Avatar
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    Isn't there an exemption for small companies?
    Only stress when you can change the outcome!

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    Quote Originally Posted by IanF View Post
    Isn't there an exemption for small companies?
    Not that I know of.

    When I spoke to them this morning David said ALL entities that conduct trade should submit the PAIA document before 31st December.

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    I got a similar one. They offer a template for R2000 that you can use for your small business. I am going to sit this one out and see what develops. I can't see govt policing this effectively so am not too concerned with the jail threat. Jails aren't big enough to hold all of us.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dissel View Post
    They offer a template for R2000 that you can use for your small business.
    Do a search for proatia manual and modify to suit.

    Here's a link to one of mine - conveniently a .doc file so easy to modify. It was lodged and accepted by the SAHRC around 2004, so certainly was acceptable at the time.

    Scanning through it now, I probably need to update my Section 51(1)(d) info.

    EDIT: For the record, Act 36 of 1947 is specific to the pest control industry, so most people can delete that one.

    Maybe we should compile a list of the generic legislation currently applicable to most businesses.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    Email problem KimH's Avatar
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    Thanks for the heads up on this Taxexempt.

    I worked into the wee hours of the morning and have now compiled my manual and uploaded same to my website. Not sure if I am meant to wait for it to be approved before uploading - but it's there now all the same. I am now going to forward the .pdf off to SAHRC and was wondering if there is some kind of fee that has to accompany my manual? When it comes to our government there are usually fees attached :P
    "If at first you don't succeed, do it like your mother told you."

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