The South African Special Risks Insurance Association (SASRIA) will form a key part of the intervention to help insured businesses restore their operations. Together with reinsurers, SASRIA has already begun its claim administration process. Pay-outs will be provided to all covered businesses. Crucially, government has decided to provide full financial backing to SASRIA should it exceed its solvency limits. The National Treasury is putting in place the necessary arrangements to ensure that this commitment is met should it be needed.
Qualifying uninsured businesses will be supported by the state, partly through a reprioritisation of the existing support mechanisms for Small Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs). The Government is also engaging with relevant stakeholders (NEDLAC, banks, insurance companies and community organisations) to deal with the challenges facing uninsured businesses.
It is expected that the package will amount to R38.9 billion of on-budget items, including revenue measures of R5 billion and spending measures of R33.9 billion. As required by section 32 of the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA), the National Treasury will publish the quarterly revenue and spending position of the government at the end of this week. These fiscal indicators will show that government is sufficiently ahead of its revenue estimate to accommodate the fiscal relief measures. Therefore, the package can be accommodated without an increase in debt, especially borrowings from the market.
The overall budget is as follows:
SARS to Implement Emergency Tax Relief Measures
President Cyril Ramaphosa announced several emergency tax relief measures in response to the continuing Covid-19 pandemic and recent unrest that are aimed at helping affected and tax compliant businesses to recover and ensure livelihoods for employees.
The South African Revenue Service (SARS) will implement these tax relief measures because compliant taxpayers have paid their fair share of tax making it possible for government to provide such a temporary safety net in a time of extreme difficulty.
SARS Commissioner Edward Kieswetter said, “The first quarter of the current financial year had exceeded expectations and had outperformed revenue collections for the same period over the past three years.”
Mr Kieswetter reiterated SARS’ commitment of providing clarity and certainty to taxpayers so that they fulfil their legal obligations effortlessly and pay what is due. He said SARS will endeavour at all times to “make it easy and seamless for taxpayers when they transact with the organization”.
The measures which SARS will implement are:
Extension of the expanded Employment Tax Incentive age eligibility and the amount that can be claimed, which is aimed at supporting employment in the most vulnerable sections of the labour market. This will apply for a period of four months and will come into operation on 1 August 2021 and end on 30 November 2021.
Extension of the deferral of the payment of employees’ tax liabilities (commonly referred to as PAYE) for tax compliant small to medium sized businesses. This will come into operation on 1 August 2021 and end on 31 October 2021.
Tax compliant businesses with a gross income of up to R100 million will be allowed to delay 35% of their Pay –As- You Earn (PAYE) liabilities over the next three months, without penalties or interest.
Deferral of excise duties on alcoholic beverages of up to three months by tax compliant licensees in the alcohol sector, on application setting out the circumstances justifying a deferral.
Should you require any further information or advice on the above do not hesitate to contact our offices for professional advice.
Essential Requirements for a Valid Trust
The structure and essential requirements for a valid trust can be found below:
The founder must have a serious intention to create a trust and transfer control
The key element of the trust arrangement is the transfer of control of the trust assets from the founder to one or more trustees, who hold the trust assets, not in their personal capacities, but for the benefit of the trust beneficiaries. The trust is essentially an arrangement that allows someone to hold assets for the benefit of the trust beneficiaries. The Trust Property Control Act defines a trust as “… a structure into which property is transferred, which is then administered by trustees, on behalf of one or more beneficiaries, in accordance with the trust instrument…”
The trust property must be clearly identified
The trust object (which could be personal or impersonal) must not be vague but must be clearly stated and lawful
There must be a binding obligation on the trustee(s) to administer and manage the trust property
The trustees must be authorised and have capacity (for example, in South Africa, when you turn 18, you are free to contract and conduct your own affairs without your parent or guardian’s assistance)
There must be at least one beneficiary
The trust beneficiaries must be clearly identified or easily identifiable
Note that the Trust Property Control Act does not specify the requirements or procedures required for the formation of a valid trust in South Africa. The Master of the High Court might have issued Letters of Authority, and assigned a registration number to the trust, but this does not necessarily make the trust valid. Usually, the validity of a trust instrument is only tested by its creditors, or the South African Revenue Service (SARS) or by a spouse in a divorce case
Remote Working & Technostress
Since the increasing availability of Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) over the past decade, as well as due to the COVID-19 pandemic, remote working has become more prominent throughout the world. It has given employees and businesses great flexibility on how they conduct their everyday business, improved productivity and as well as shown many that physical offices are no longer necessary or can at least be downscaled to decrease costs. However, since the increase in remote working, there has been an evident increase in technostress experienced by those working remotely.
Technostress is defined as a modern disease caused by the inability to cope with new technologies in a healthy manner. With the prominence of ICTs and remote working, employees are now constantly connected to their businesses – making them feel that they must always be ready and available whenever they are needed. This view is shared by studies done by the World Health Organization (WHO) which have shown that this constant connection and availability made possible by ICTs has brought about an expectation of individuals to be constantly available and more efficient with tasks – leading to a rise in technostress.
Technostress has a number of physical and mental side effects, namely: headaches, body pains, insomnia, difficulty concentrating, mental exhaustion, as well as can even lead to complete burnout. It is important for businesses working remotely to understand these symptoms so that they can help spot them in employees as a means to help combat this rise. Below is a list of other ways businesses can help combat technostress:
Allow employees to work flexible hours throughout the day in order to lead a more balanced lifestyle.
Use software to track and monitor employee screen time to ensure that they are properly rested.
Enforce a strict communication policy with employees, limiting communication after hours and reducing the number of apps used for communication.
Promote a healthy work culture which respects employees’ work life and private life boundaries.
Without action against technostress, employees will eventually experience poor work performance, an increase in errors in work that they produce, low confidence and moral within the working environment, and general resentment towards their work.
We hope that this article will help you to properly identify and combat technostress within your business and ensure a better working environment for all of your employees.