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  • Tax Administration Jamaica (TAJ) this morning implemented phase one of its new Revenue Administration Information System (RAiS).
  • The February 9, 2015 rollout involves operating General Consumption (GCT), Special Consumption Tax (SCT), Guest Accommodation Room Tax (GART) and Telephone Call Tax (TCT) activities on the new system.
  • The other tax types will continue to be processed on the previous system for now.

Tax Administration Jamaica (TAJ) this morning implemented phase one of its new Revenue Administration Information System (RAiS). The February 9, 2015 rollout involves operating General Consumption (GCT), Special Consumption Tax (SCT), Guest Accommodation Room Tax (GART) and Telephone Call Tax (TCT) activities on the new system.  The other tax types will continue to be processed on the previous system for now.

With RAiS now operational taxpayers will be able to use the enhanced e-services to more easily make payments and file their GCT and SCT returns, as well as to begin filing GART and TCT returns electronically. Through the new web service customers will also be able to carry out several other activities, including viewing their accounts, creating a payment plan, objecting to an assessment, requesting an advisory visit, granting third party access to their account, verifying Tax Withholding Entities and applying for refunds for these tax types. Additionally, taxpayers will be able to send and receive secure messages, as well as view certain letters or notices that have been sent to them by the TAJ.

Another key feature of the new system is that it will allow taxpayers to do online direct bank payments for the tax types currently available in RAiS. These transactions will be facilitated through the banking system’s Automatic Clearing House (ACH).  It should be noted however that at this time only transfers from Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS) accounts will be accommodated in the automated direct banking feature.

Taxpayers will access all their e-filing accounts through a single sign-on service.  They will log in to the recently established TAJ Enterprise Portal www.jamaicatax.gov.jm, and navigate to RAiS eServices, using their existing login credentials.  Where taxpayers are having issues with their logins they should contact the TAJ Customer Care Centre at 1-888-Tax-Help (1-888-829-4357) for assistance.

The new system is also expected to enhance TAJ’s efficiency in administering domestic taxes. RAiS will assist internal users to perform daily activities more efficiently. It will introduce a computerised workflow and work load management by automatically generating work assignments and case creation; boost arrears management by the system tracking levies, monitoring payment plans and generating reports; and improve data-mining capabilities by using its data discovery functions.

To prepare staff to use RAiS, training has been conducted for over 1,000 personnel, including Auditors and Compliance Officers. Additionally, TAJ is set to begin a series of stakeholder sessions, which will be conducted across the island, to engage primarily business operators and accountants who will be interacting with the system regularly.  A demo is scheduled for February 16 with the Taxation Committee of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Jamaica.

Full implementation of RAiS is set for June 2016, when two remaining phases relating to other tax types and functionalities will be rolled out. The two year RAiS project is being undertaken by TAJ in partnership with Egov Jamaica and FAST Enterprise LLC, a US based firm which has rolled out similar applications in over 140 projects worldwide. The project is funded through the Government’s Fiscal Administration Modernisation Programme (FAMP) and is expected to significantly improve the TAJ’s capacity to integrate and administer the various tax systems currently in use.

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