The Revenue Appeals Division is upgrading its case management system to bring about greater efficiency in the exchange of information and execution of the appeals process.
The upgrading is among several initiatives aimed at improving service delivery as the Division marks its fifth anniversary in 2020.
“Two key features of this upgrade will include the provision of an online portal, which will allow taxpayers to file their appeals online and track their appeals through the process,” Commissioner of Revenue Appeals, Dr. Deloree Staple-Chambers, said at a recent JIS Think Tank.
“The second feature is integrating our [computer] systems with that of the tax departments – Tax Administration Jamaica (TAJ) and Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA) – in the first instance. The system is expected to come on stream in September 2020,” she noted.
At present, the RAD has access to the Revenue Administration Information System (RAiS) platform used by TAJ and is able to update taxpayers’ records with the effect of the appeal.
The Commissioner said there are plans to later integrate the Division’s system with the Automated System for Customs Data (ASYCUDA) used by JCA.
To further improve service delivery, the Division will be publishing its customer charter of standards this fiscal year, detailing the standards that stakeholders are required to uphold.
The Division also has plans to increase public awareness about the entity and the revenue appeals process.
Dr. Deloree Staple-Chambers said that a lack of awareness could negatively impact the tax system’s efforts to provide fairness to taxpayers.
“If they (taxpayers) do not know their rights, then a lot of people are walking away with decisions that they are not happy with. We have measured our visibility over the last two years and we have realised that our visibility is low in the public.
“We were at 24 per cent awareness when we did the initial test, and last year we measured at 28 per cent. The aim is to increase that so more persons are aware of their right to tax appeal and the process in which to access that right,” she noted.
Dr. Staple-Chambers told JIS News that for the commemoration of the entity’s fifth anniversary, “we will be producing a documentary on the appeals process and we will be getting testimonials from persons who have used the system to help to spread the word”.