OPINION: You may know the Inland Revenue department as a big fat scrub that binds its terrible mouths on anything that is moving, and makes its nest in a labyrinth of bureaucratic tax returns. 39; g glued together with vapor secretions.
But the Easter is a powerful time for transformation and renaming. The IRD managed to turn our strong cock over the holidays, closing itself to the outside world for eight days unparalleled.
This was the vital step of revamping $ 1.6 billion, and the nation was standing still. Well, kind of. Accountants were chewing their mechanical pencils anxiously. The poor souls who tried to contact the call center did not notice much difference.
Inside the pulley cocoon, mysterious processes were in place. He moved and rearranged organs themselves. The old form was destroyed, and was re-made from the new.
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On the eighth day, the cocoon split was open, revealing to the quiet forces … Ok, not a beautiful butterfly exactly, but something different. Less, more simply. Metallic nucleus for computer age; compound compound eyes, not cleaned; and proboscis to flex and interrogate each last cut.
This is the new and improved IRD, and is about to spread its wings.
The letters will start arriving later this month. All of us have one, even those who have never had the pleasure of corresponding with the tax department of the front. This year things have changed.
If you earn a wage or salary, you will find out how much you have to earn, and how much tax you have paid. There is a chance, you may also be among the 1.6 million people in line with tax rebate. Unlike previous years, there is no need to apply for it, or fill in any forms. It'll turn straight into your bank account with a nice clinical sound.
Of course, this automation breaks both ways. If you're in the unlucky minority, you'll get yourself with a tax bill to pay, which you might have had from the front. This additional amount is estimated at $ 50 million, although the rebates are worth $ 150 million jointly, so it is still a pretty good result for taxpayers.
This is the real victory: the new parasitic tax rebate companies have been automated out of existence. These are the companies that raised 20 per cent or more to claim your tax back – a task that anyone with a pulse could make themselves in five minutes of an apartment. It was like paying tax on your tax (overpaid).
Now they're either closing a shop, or moving to new business models. The WooHoo website says "a mission was achieved". To the extent that they encourage people to get what they owe, rather than do nothing at all, fair play for them. It was a nice little winner as he lasted.
Finally, for the self-employed, landlords and those of us whose tax affairs are a little more difficult. We have to complete the terrible IR3 form still, but it has now been filled in advance with any wage income, salary and investment, plus tax paid. So that's something.
There is one other benefit for everyone: the new system lets you upload receipts for gifts such as school fees and church tithes, rather than trying to remember to keep them in a drawer and post them all in at the end of the year. This trouble has meant that less than 60 per cent of gift rebates are claimed. I hope this is about to change.
The IRD has carried out 90,000 tests to make sure everything goes smoothly over the next few weeks. I'm sure some things will cause concern. But in theory, this is a big step forward for convenience, fairness and simplicity.
All you have to do is make sure that the IRD has the correct bank account details on file, which you can check online. After that, kick back and wait for your assessment to arrive – and if you're lucky, a little tidy rebate.
Do you have a question of burning money? Buster Email Budget on [email protected], or hit it on Facebook. You can also find links to previous Budget Drivers here.