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Taxpayers reminded to file taxes early from 1 March

The Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) reminds all taxpayers, including sole-proprietors and partners, to file their income tax returns from 1 March to 18 April 2018.

For this year, IRAS is introducing several features to improve the tax filing experience.

IRAS stated that 200,000 taxpayers will receive tax bill immediately upon filing taxes this year, saying that those with an assessable income of $100,000 or less to receive their finalised tax bill (Notice of Assessment) immediately upon filing their tax returns this year.

IRAS noted that a pilot group of 70,000 taxpayers (with an assessable income of $40,000 or less) enjoyed this service last year, adding that it aims to scale up this service initiative progressively.

It then stated that taxpayers on No-Filing Service (NFS) can preview tax bill and request for early assessment, saying that 1.5 million taxpayers, or 2 in 3 taxpayers, are on the No-Filing Service (NFS) scheme and are not required to file a tax return this year. Taxpayers on the NFS can preview their tax bill (Notice of Assessment) at myTax Portal from March 2018.

"If there are no changes to the pre-filled income and relief claims, NFS taxpayers can request for an early assessment and the tax bill will be available at myTax Portal by the next working day. A group of 40,000 taxpayers on NFS requested for early assessment last year," it added.

From Year of Assessment (YA) 2018, IRAS noted that the total amount of personal income tax reliefs for taxpayers is subject to an overall tax relief cap at $80,000 per YA.

It then encouraged taxpayers to claim their personal reliefs as long as the qualifying conditions are met, adding, "If their total amount of reliefs claimed exceeds the relief cap, the tax reliefs will be capped at $80,000."

As announced in Budget 2018, to encourage everyone to contribute to the community, IRAS said that taxpayers will continue to enjoy 250% tax deduction for qualifying donations made until 31 December 2021.

The authority then noted that taxpayers who receive their tax bill immediately or request for an early assessment under these service initiatives will have their GIRO tax instalment plan computed if they have subscribed to the GIRO payment scheme.

"Through these service initiatives, taxpayers enjoy greater certainty and can plan ahead for their tax payments. Taxpayers are encouraged to pay their taxes by GIRO, to benefit from the flexibility and convenience of paying in up to 12 monthly interest-free instalments or a one-time deduction," it stated.

It said that partners can continue to enjoy the convenience of having their share of partnership income pre-filled in their individual income tax returns (Form B) by IRAS, if their Precedent Partner e-Files the partnership’s tax return (Form P) by 28 Feb 2018. The Precedent Partner does not need to separately inform the respective partners of their share of the partnership income under this service initiative.

According to the authority, last year, more than 5,000 partnerships filed their Form P early, and enabled more than 10,000 partners to benefit from this partnership income pre-filling service. IRAS encourages all Precedent Partners to file their Form P by 28 Feb 2018.

IRAS has extended the service initiative to pre-fill self-employed income information to Grab and Uber drivers this year. In this pilot implementation, Grab and Uber drivers were invited to participate in the scheme through the Grab and Uber platforms. Some 9,000 drivers have opted to participate this year.

"They will enjoy the convenience of having their income and commission fees pre-filled by IRAS in their electronic tax returns, making the tax filing process simpler for them," it said.

IRAS said that drivers who have opted in for this service initiative will be able to view and verify their pre-filled information at myTax Portal, and declare any other sources of income (e.g. rental income). They should amend their pre-filled information if their actual income or allowable expenses are different from the pre-filled information.

The pre-filling of self-employed income information was first implemented in 2015 for individual commission earners such as property and insurance agents. IRAS said that it will continue to collaborate with industry stakeholders to bring about greater convenience in tax filing for more self-employed taxpayers.

IRAS urged taxpayers to file the taxes early in March 2018 at myTax Portal to avoid the last-minute rush or late filing penalties. You can now file your taxes on-the-go via your smartphone anytime, anywhere. For more information on income tax filing matters, visit IRAS websiteand stay up-to-date by following IRAS on Facebook or Twitter.

For tax filing assistance, you can contact IRAS through the following channels:

  • AskJamie, your virtual assistant on tax filing matters
  • Email us via myTax Mail service (at mytax.iras.gov.sg)
  • Call IRAS at 1800 356 8300 or chat with us online (from Mondays to Fridays, 8am to 5pm)