Prison for horticultural contracting company director

Prison and home detention sentences have been handed down to two men who used horticultural contracting companies to evade over $1.7 million of tax between 2007 and 2017. Gautam Kapoor was the principal director and Vikas Menon the in-house bookkeeper, for 18 different companies that operated in the Kapoor group of companies, supplying seasonal workers to growers or other contractors. Kapoor was given 4-years in jail and Menon 9-months home…  Read more

Inland Revenue warns against avoiding 39% rate

Inland Revenue (IR) says the new 39 percent tax rate for those on incomes over $180,000 may see some high-income earners tempted to try and reduce their exposure to the rate. IR Customer Segment Leader, Tony Morris, says IR will be keeping a close watch for any activity by such people that looks like its primary aim is to avoid the 39 percent. “If that’s how it looks to us…  Read more

First Working for Families payments for the new tax year

On Tuesday 7 April Inland Revenue’s Working for Families customers receive their first payment for the new tax year and for some the amount they get may be different. The amount may have changed from what they received last month, based on what their circumstances are expected to be for the year ahead. Each of the WfF customers received a Notice of Entitlement in February either via e-mail or through…  Read more

Inland Revenue reminder about the end of cheques

Inland Revenue is reminding customers it will no longer accept cheques from 1 March 2020. Along with the Accident Compensation Corporation, Kiwibank and New Zealand Post, Inland Revenue is calling time on cheques because of their rapidly declining use, the end of the cheque processing machine’s working life, and unsupported software. Inland Revenue spokesperson Sharon Thompson says IR is increasingly digital in the way it works, and most customers already…  Read more

Changes to ring-fencing rental losses rules

Inland Revenue is reminding landlords they can no longer offset residential property deductions against their other income. Often referred to as “ring-fencing rental losses”, deductions for residential properties are ring-fenced so they can only be used against income from that property. From the 2019-20 income year new ring-fencing rules mean people cannot use rental losses to offset other income like salary and wages. Under the rules, landlords can only claim…  Read more

Tax evasion prison sentence a warning for hospitality sector

Recent successful court action against the owners of more than 20 Thai takeaway restaurants should serve as a warning that Inland Revenue will track down and prosecute businesses deliberately hiding cash sales – no matter how long it takes. Five members of one family were sentenced this week after a multi-year tax evasion investigation. One was sent to prison for two years and 8 months and three will serve home…  Read more

IR cases in the courts

Working with customers to get their tax right is IR’s preferred approach. However, when all other avenues fail, we consider taking prosecution action. IR has more than 90 cases before the courts as of the end of June and sentences have been handed down over recent months for tax evasion and other offences. Tax cases receive more media attention each year reflecting public concern about appropriate action being taken when…  Read more

Calling ‘time’ on cheques

Inland Revenue and the Accident Compensation Corporation are calling ‘time’ on cheques. From March next year, IR and ACC will no longer accept payments by cheque from customers who are able to use alternative payment options. IR received more than 430,000 cheques last financial year, the largest number received by any public sector agency. ACC received approximately 25,000 cheques from business customers. Those numbers have been dropping by around 20…  Read more

Bulgarian data breach information

Following the recent data breach at the Bulgarian National Revenue Agency (BNRA), the agency has confirmed that a small number of people with New Zealand investments who are tax residents of Bulgaria, have been affected. The data involved does not include any financial details for the taxpayers, only their tax identification number, date of birth and name and address details. New Zealand’s Inland Revenue Department (IR) has notified the taxpayers…  Read more

Community detention for tax fraud

A former New Plymouth company director who used forged documents to try get GST refunds she wasn’t entitled to has been sentenced to community detention for tax fraud. Lee Hinehou Hare was sentenced yesterday in the Christchurch District Court to 6 months community detention and 200 hours community work. She was convicted under the Crimes Act 1961 of false accounting, using a forged document and using a document for pecuniary…  Read more

IR consulting on ‘Bring Your Own Device’ tax guidelines

Inland Revenue has prepared guidelines which clarify tax rules when employees use their own telecommunications tools and devices for work purposes. Often described as Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) plans, the agreements cover usage plans, mobile phones, tablets, laptops and other devices. Many employers have a policy of agreeing to or allowing employees to use their own devices for work purposes because of the benefits of convenience, flexibility, increased productivity…  Read more

Tax refund season ends near $600 million

Almost $600 million has been paid into taxpayers’ bank accounts in the past two months, after the first season of automatic tax assessments. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says the completion of this year’s tax refund season is a significant milestone. “The ability of Inland Revenue to run auto calculations for the first time reinforces efforts to ensure everyone pays their fair share of tax. The refunds are $188 million higher…  Read more

KiwiSaver tax rates addressed in law change

Inland Revenue will gain greater powers to alert savings providers if a KiwiSaver investor is on the wrong tax rate, under new legislation introduced to Parliament. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says the administration of the tax system has markedly improved as a result of the new information technology project known as Business Transformation (BT). “Stage three of BT rolled out in April and has given Inland Revenue greater insight into…  Read more

Fairer tax measures pass into law

Reforms to tax rules designed to ensure greater fairness in child support, retail trade, and residential investment have now passed into law. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says the Taxation (Annual Rates for 2019-20, GST Offshore Supplier Registration, and Remedial Matters) Act 2019 has this afternoon received the Royal Assent. “One of the biggest changes will require offshore businesses that supply low-value goods to New Zealand to collect GST,” Mr Nash…  Read more

More than $300 million already refunded to New Zealand taxpayers

The new automatic tax assessment process has reached the halfway mark with Inland Revenue successfully refunding more than $300 million to New Zealanders. “By the end of July, everyone assessed for a refund will have been notified and have that money in their bank accounts,” says IR’s Deputy Commissioner Sharon Thompson. “There are roughly 1.2 million assessments still to be issued, and they’ll be sent out in batches over the…  Read more

Inland Revenue moves to help investors get tax rate right

Inland Revenue is moving to help make sure investors, including KiwiSavers, get on the correct prescribed investor tax rate (PIR). Updated estimates show around 550,000 people have underpaid tax on their investments (including KiwiSaver) with an average of $80 to $90 owing per person for the 2019 tax year, says Inland Revenue deputy commissioner, Sharon Thompson. “This suggests to us that people need support to make sure they choose the…  Read more

Compliance strengthened for property speculation

Inland Revenue is to gain greater oversight of land transfer information to ensure those buying and selling properties are complying with tax rules on property speculation. Cabinet has agreed to implement recommendation 99 of the Tax Working Group’s (TWG) final report. It will require most people who buy and sell properties to supply their IRD number on land transfer documentation. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says the TWG made the recommendation…  Read more

Fraudulent direct debit scam shut down

Inland Revenue has moved quickly to shut down a scam where bank accounts appear to have been misused to generate fraudulent transactions. Deputy Commissioner Mary Craig said IR had identified a small number of instances where people’s bank accounts had been used to set up what look like fraudulent direct debits. “We know the identities of those involved, many of whom appear to be linked to each other and we’ve…  Read more

Automatic tax system off to a smooth start – more than $80 million of refunds issued in the first week

The first two batches of automatic tax assessments have been successfully issued by Inland Revenue this week with over $80 million of refunds going out to taxpayers, along with just over $10 million of tax bills to pay. Further batches go out shortly and the process will be completed by the end of July. Deputy Commissioner, Transformation, Greg James says the sort of numbers the new system is dealing with…  Read more

First wave of automatic tax refunds to be released

More than 2.5 million New Zealanders will receive their first ever automatic tax assessment over the next two months with the first batch going out May 2019. From Monday 20 May through to the end of July, Inland Revenue will be letting salary and wage earners know if they have a refund owing, a bill to pay or neither of these. Deputy Commissioner Sharon Thompson says refunds will be going…  Read more

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