Following the announcement in a release, by the Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Dr. The Hon. Nigel Clarke, Tax Administration Jamaica (TAJ) wishes to provide the public with further details of the extension of the relaxation of compliance measures that will now be in place up to September 30, 2020 and the implementation of other measures aimed at assisting businesses, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
During the period, up to September 30, 2020, the Tax Authority will NOT carry out any enforcement compliance activities. The continued suspended enforcement measures include:
- No new Summonses issued
- No Court Proceedings or Enforcement action for non-compliance until after September 30, 2020. Businesses are however advised that reminders and notices will continue to be generated. Persons may also receive calls from our Customer Care Centre or Compliance Officers advising of options for payment arrangements and the various channels through which payments may be made, as persons will be encouraged to keep their payments current.
Additionally, business entities and individuals that have not met their statutory obligations, will continue to be granted a Tax Compliance Certificate (TCC) upon application, without the usual compliance due diligence associated with the application process. These TCCs will reflect a September 30, 2020 expiry date. This will facilitate the use of the Certificate by the taxpayer within the stipulated period up to September 30. Applicants will NOT be referred to the Compliance Unit during this period. Compliant taxpayers will however continue to benefit from a TCC consistent
with TAJ’s Standard Operating Procedures that would allow them to get a TCC with an expiry date beyond September 30, 2020.
Persons are reminded that a TCC may be applied for online via the TAJ’s website at www.jamaicatax.gov.jm, instead of having to visit a Tax Office to do so.
Relaxation of compliance requirements will also apply to Exemption Certificates issued to persons subject to Withholding Tax on Specified Services, and Deferment Certificates applicable to manufacturers under the Deferment Scheme.
In addition to the measures that are being extended, as of July 1, 2020, an added compliance measure has also been implemented. Taxpayers with outstanding interest and penalty charges, resulting from late payment and or late filing of tax obligations due for the period March 1, 2020 to June 30, 2020 may qualify for a reversal of the charges incurred during the period. While the details are still being worked out points to note and conditions that will apply are:
1. The reversal applies only to charges incurred during the defined period, in relation to General Consumption Tax (GCT), Income Tax (including PAYE), Education Tax and Guest Accommodation Room Tax (GART);
2. All outstanding Returns, including estimated obligations for the relevant tax types must be filed by July 31, 2020. This includes all July 2020 obligations;
3. All outstanding principal obligations must be satisfied in respect of the abovementioned tax types by July 31, 2020. This includes entering into a payment agreement.
4. All instalment payments pursuant to an existing payment agreement that are due, must be satisfied by July 31, 2020;
5. Businesses need not apply, as the system will be configured to automatically make the reversal in accordance with applicable conditions.
The TAJ Technical Unit is currently working to prepare a Technical Bulletin that will provide further details on the planned reversal of qualifying charges. This will be published to the TAJ website on completion and also be shared with stakeholders.
Tax Administration Jamaica understands that businesses continue to be impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and encourage taxpayers who are experiencing difficulties to make contact with the Authority to discuss payment arrangements, and engage in fulsome discussions to ensure they stay compliant in these challenging times.
For further information persons may call the Tax Administration Customer Care Centre at 888-Tax-Help (888-829-4357) or visit the website www.jamaicatax.gov.jm.