A renovation contractor who failed to register his company for Goods and Services Tax (GST) liability for four years was ordered to pay a total of S$509,000.80 in back-dated taxes, penalties and fines.
Chong Wee Keng had failed to notify the Comptroller of GST of his liability to register his sole-proprietorship, D'Esprit Design and Renovations, for GST by Oct 30, 2006. As a result, he failed to account for S$458,637.09 of GST between Dec 1, 2006 and Dec 31, 2010, the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) said on Friday (Oct 24).
On top of the unpaid GST, Chong also has to pay S$45,863.71 - a 10 per cent penalty on the amount of the tax due - as well as a court fine of S$4,500.
"IRAS runs regular audit programmes across various industries to check the level of tax compliance of the businesses. Using data analytics tools, IRAS is able to cross-check data and detect anomalies. This case was uncovered through one such audit programme," the tax authorities said.
It is compulsory for businesses with an annual turnover of more than S$1 million to register for GST. If the turnover for the past four quarters or expected turnover for the next 12 months exceeds S$1 million, businesses are legally required to notify the Comptroller of GST of their liability to be registered for GST within 30 days of the end of the fourth quarter.
Businesses failing to register for GST even though they are required to do so by law can be fined up to S$10,000 and pay a penalty equal to 10 per cent of the tax due from the date on which the business is required to register for GST.
Businesses or individuals should immediately disclose any past tax mistakes, said IRAS, adding that it will treat such disclosures as mitigating factors when considering the action to be taken against offenders.