The South African Revenue Service (SARS) wants the power, without a warrant, to conduct a search and to seize documents if it believes you are about to destroy records and evidence of fraudulent activities or income earned.  This is one of the more controversial proposals in the recent Tax Administration Bill, but one that is causing wide spread concern.  Currently the law requires a warrant allowing SARS to proceed with such search and seizure.  In practice, tax professionals are concerned that SARS will also be able to call any individual (whether or not he or she is liable for tax) and question him or her about his or her tax affairs or those of another taxpayer.  These proposals are being seen as a severe approach to a more limited tax collection issue, and are likely to see more scrutiny and criticism from the tax profession within South Africa.  These measures will, if implemented, be of great concern to foreign corporations carrying on business in South Africa.

Personal Finance (South Africa) – SARS wants power to search and seize without a warrant