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Thread: SARS PAYE workshops

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    SARS PAYE workshops

    Earlier this month SARS sent out an invite to employers to attend workshops on the PAYE process. I thought it was a great idea, long overdue even.

    So did lots of other people by the looks of things. Here's the start of SARS's latest advisory on the workshops:
    Dear Employer

    Due to the overwhelming interest in attending the SARS PAYE workshops to be held later this month, please be advised that all the workshops are already fully booked after we received more than 8 000 registration requests in three days!

    We are enormously encouraged by the interest shown by employers, practitioners and other stakeholders in understanding the PAYE process and getting it right.
    Yep - me too. However, it also indicates just how inadequate the information SARS gives us to use actually is. Either that, or the problems with meaningful communication with SARS...
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    Gold Member Martinco's Avatar
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    Just a pity that these workshops are ( were! ) only available in the "bigger" centers.
    For me to send some staff to JHB is a major schlep.
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    I attended one of those workshops. Everyone was confused when we started, and, sadly, just as confused when we finished.
    The "lecturer" several times answered questions with "we haven't been trained on that yet..." and at the slightest hint of criticism (of the confusing system, not of her!) from floor, she said "Don't shoot the messenger - I'm only here to tell you what to do."
    As the many downloadable manuals are around 50 to 60 pages long, I thought it would be a good idea to attend. In fact, all it did for me was reassure me that I wasn't the only dolt trying to pay our taxes to SARS, and getting frustrated in the process.
    I think they must have bought their software from the same vendors as Cipro.

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Well, I've managed to get into the next round in April. What fascinates me is it's being held in a cinema, complete with complimentary coke and popcorn!

    Just wondering if this going to end up being "SARS PAYE Workshop - The Movie."
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave A View Post
    Well, I've managed to get into the next round in April. What fascinates me is it's being held in a cinema, complete with complimentary coke and popcorn!

    Just wondering if this going to end up being "SARS PAYE Workshop - The Movie."
    Yes, Dave, I think you are indeed going to see The Movie. Hope it inspires you.

    Here's what it inspired me to write a few months ago when first I saw it on SARS website:

    Open Letter to: Mark Kingon, SARS Group Executive, on seeing him “....joining ABN’s Fenly Foxen in-studio to take us through the new PAYE changes including the introduction of a bi-annual reconciliation process.” in the videos; SARS Simplifies eFiling for Tax-Payers on www.sars.gov.za.
    Dear Mr Mark Kingon,
    I enjoyed seeing your amiable, smiling responses to Fenly Foxon, in the new video on Sars website. Such a pretty girl., and sweet, too, Pity she hadn't a clue what she should have been asking about. Still, you both seemed to be having such a nice time chit-chatting away about the Paye changes, and the intro of the fun new bi-annual reconciliation process, it didn't seem to matter. Surprised, really that no one on the set thought to give you a mug of coffee and a bikky to add to the cosy air.

    Info and content? Nah. Go read the 46- page, 6MB downloaded manual if you want to know what you're supposed to do. This is all about letting you know what fun Sars thinks tax-paying should be.

    Wish I could say the same for me. While you're being all relaxed and sincere and saying what a jolly good thing that we have Sars-online so that you chaps don't have to have 5 million of the great unregistered crowding into your nice air-conned offices to sign up as tax-payers, I'm grinding away doggedly. How many calls to the Calls Centre? Well, not 5 million, but it sure felt like it. How many minutes waiting in the queue ("You are number.... Ninety Two… in line to speak to one of our consultants...”). How many more tears of frustration dripping into my now soggy lap as I contemplate yet another long night of struggling with E@syVile, Sars' challenging new mind-game for us poor small business owners.

    I wonder why F.F. didn't have the wit to ask you what to do on the days when Sars whole system went down the virtual tubes just at Paye-pay time, and no one could submit a declaration or make the mandatory payment. The Call Centre girl knew exactly what to say: "Well, tough if the system is down. You still have to pay, or you will be charged interest and penalties." And said with a nice touch of real venom, too. They must love their jobs, those Call Centre "consultants".

    And a pity Fenly didn't ask you what to make of the fact that my Payment Details page recorded my 201008 Paye period payment as having been made on 09 June 2010, when in fact I made it on 06 September 2010. And it really would have been a thrill for me if she had thought to ask (and if you had been able to answer) what to do with the Paye Reconciliation Status web-page that says, over and over again, like a cracked old-style record, Refresh Status, Refresh Status, Refresh Status, and then, triumphantly, There has been an error. Please try again...............

    Dear Mr Kingon Group Executive, please let us know when the next installment of your Let's Learn to Love Sars video comes out. Can't Wait.

    Oh, PS: Wish I could get other You Tube movies to play so nicely on my PC - both videos (Yes, I sat enthralled through Part 1 and Part 2 !) ran through beautifully from start to finish. Not a stutter, not a judder, not a hint of, what do they call it? Buffering? Really, lovely picture quality, great sound. Just a shame that in the whole 24 minutes, 28 seconds there wasn't one bit of useful info... Oh, except that if we left the field for "unregistered taxpayers" blank on our recons, Sars would register them anyway. Sometime next year.

    Would that be because making movies is taking up so much of your Group time this year? Yeah, I understand. Filling in these forms is taking me away from my real business, too.
    A bit vindictive, your lot, I hear. So I’ll just sign myself
    Kay, the movie lover.

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    The latest notice from SARS dealing with importing the income tax numbers of employees in e@syFile contains this little nugget:
    The SARS PAYE workshop for employers will be broadcast live on Summit TV (channel 412 on DSTV) from 10:00 to13:00 on 12 April 2011 and a webcast of the workshop will be available on www.sars.gov.za. Make sure that you do not miss out on this opportunity to learn how to balance your reconciliation with increased efficiency.
    Now how are they going to deal with questions?
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    Diamond Member Justloadit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave A View Post
    The latest notice from SARS dealing with importing the income tax numbers of employees in e@syFile contains this little nugget:

    Now how are they going to deal with questions?
    What! You mean that after this explanation, you are not going to understand?
    Victor - Knowledge is a blessing or a curse, your current circumstances make you decide!
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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Buddy, I've got questions the SARS call centre, the Mt. Edgecombe tax office and my auditors have not been able to answer (at least in any consistent, sensible manner).

    My favorite is what values should be applied to retirement vs non-retirement funding income on the IRP5? You should hear some of the answers I've got.

    And then seeing as whatever we put in there isn't relied on to calculate the tax deductable retirement funding allowance at assessment time anyway, my question as to why they make employers differentiate between the two in the first place really gets the feet and eyeballs shuffling.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    Diamond Member Justloadit's Avatar
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    Hi Dave,

    I was being sarcastic
    Off course there are going to be many questions, maybe that's why they use the movie method, like that they do not have to answer any questions, and hide behind the call centre.

    MMMMmmm wonder if we can use the CPA against SARS, no guvment service provided for the tax we pay, so please return my money
    Victor - Knowledge is a blessing or a curse, your current circumstances make you decide!
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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Justloadit View Post
    I was being sarcastic
    I thought so. But it was such a great launch pad I couldn't resist playing the straight response
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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