Specialising in tax and exchange control, Johan spent time with PwC in the UK, the financial capital of the globe, and on his return spent 3 years with PwC Cape Town in the Corporate International Tax department before joining STBB as a candidate attorney in 2011. Johan practices within the Corporate Commercial department and has extensive commercial drafting experience with a specific focus on business acquisitions, going-concern transactions and advises on tax aspects of commercial and property-related transactions. Since 2015 Johan heads the Non-Resident practice within STBB. His expert services range from assisting foreign investors in remitting their proceeds from fixed property out of South Africa and drafting and regularising loan agreements through the SARB to obtaining Tax Directives and various types of Tax Clearance Certificates from SARS. As an admitted attorney, conveyancer and registered tax practitioner, Johan’s skill set makes him an invaluable asset in advising and assisting STBB’s diverse clients.

Thought of the Week | Estate Agent Commission and VAT

The VAT increase coming into effect on 1 April 2018 triggered some tricky questions. One of these is the question what the VAT rate will be in the case of estate agent’s commission payable in respect of a mandate granted to the agent before 1 April 2018, where a sale is completed (all suspensive conditions fulfilled) after this date.

VAT legislation determines that the time of supply is crucially important when deciding on the applicable VAT rate (unless there are exemptions or transition periods). In the commission scenario, there is generally an ongoing supply of services by the agent, that must be apportioned in terms of the transition rules, although the commission is payable on registration of the transfer. Depending on the wording of the mandate agreement, the most transparent way of dealing with the VAT question would be to apply a time apportionment to the calculation. For example, if the mandate was granted on 15 March and a sale completed on 15 April then 50% of the commission carries VAT at 14% and the remainder at 15%.

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