Taxpayers’ rights in respect of third-party appointments as an effective means to collect outstanding taxes in the present constitutional era
Section 179 of the Tax Administration Act 28 of 2011 (‘TAA’) has recently been scrutinised by the courts in South Africa. The section empowers the South African Revenue Service (‘SARS’) to issue a notice to a third party to pay over an amount of money of a taxpayer in settlement of any outstanding tax debt to SARS. This report investigates the historical development of s 179 of the TAA in context of the constitutional legal framework in South Africa and whether a limitation of a taxpayer’s right as guaranteed by the Constitution is justified. Further, this report demonstrates that the necessity of recovering tax revenue by means of s 179 of the TAA and that any non-compliance with the letter of the law by SARS, will not escape the scrutiny of the court. Finally, the report provides recommendations to strike a balance between the powers of SARS under s 179 of the TAA and the rights of taxpayers to administrative action that is lawful, reasonable and procedurally fair.
A research report submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Laws by Coursework and Research Report to the Faculty of Commerce, Law and Management, School of Law, at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, 2022