Tax Department Set to Penalize Unlicensed Agents

In a push to better manage tax compliance, the General Department of Taxation (GDT) has issued a notification promising to start enforcing a 2013 sub-decree preventing unlicensed tax agents from operating in the country, beginning next month.

Sent to agents in October, the notice says those who operate without having registered after year’s end will face fines from $1,250 to $2,500 and up to a year in prison.

Companies who engage the services of unlicensed agents, meanwhile, will be fined $1,250.

Vann Sinat, a tax manager with Bun & Associates, which is still in the process of registering with the department, said most tax agents had previously disregarded the sub-decree.

“There are 34 agents with a license. Most tax service providers don’t have a license,” he said, adding that he was certain his firm would be registered in time.

The move comes as part of a greater push for compliance by the GDT, which has rolled out a number of reforms this year, including a promise to abolish the 1 percent minimum tax for businesses that meet its accounting standards.

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