An investigation of the tax implications of a cession of the right to receive a dividend

Haupt, Estian (2017-03)

Thesis (MAcc)--Stellenbosch University, 2017.

Thesis

ENGLISH SUMMARY : In South Africa Dividends Tax was introduced with effect from 1 April 2012. The effect hereof was a shift away from a company-level tax to a shareholder-level tax. The introduction of Dividends Tax has, however, complicated the cession of a right to income even further. In order to prevent avoidance schemes that utilised the exemptions from Dividends Tax, in particular the exemption of South African resident companies, the legislature has enacted numerous amendments since 2011 directly dealing with the tax implications of the cession of a right to receive a dividend. There is currently a lack of definitive guidance on the tax implications of a cession of the right to receive a dividend, other than for purposes of Dividends Tax. The purpose of this research was to investigate the tax implications of the cession of a right to receive a dividend with reference to not only Dividends Tax, but also Securities Transfer Tax, Value-Added Tax, Donations Tax and Normal Tax (which includes Capital Gains Tax), and to attempt to formulate guidelines and provide appropriate guidance. In investigating the tax implications of a cession of a right to receive a dividend, it is necessary to consider the nature of a share and whether the type of right being ceded is a real right or a personal right, as the tax treatment in respect of different rights would differ. Based on the literature review conducted, it was found that the rights created as a result of the cession of the right to receive a dividend would depend on the circumstances of each case and although it is submitted as a personal right in principle, could constitute a real right when the parties intend to create a usufruct. This uncertainty further lends support for the necessity for definitive guidance to enable taxpayers to determine their tax obligations. The tax implications of the cession of a right to a dividend with regard to Securities Transfer Tax, Value-Added Tax, Donations Tax, Normal Tax (which includes Capital Gains Tax implications) and Dividends Tax was investigated and the findings concluded in a table which could be used in drafting the definitive guidance.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING : In Suid-Afrika is Dividendbelasting sedert 1 April 2012 effektief. Die effek hiervan is ‘n verskuiwing van belasting op ‘n maatskappyvlak na belasting op ‘n aandeelhouersvlak. Die inwerkingtrede van Dividendbelasting het egter die sessie van die reg tot inkomste selfs verder gekompliseer. Die wetgewer het sedert 2011 verskeie wysigings gemaak ten einde vermydingskemas te verhoed wat die vrystelling van Dividendbelasting tot gevolg het – veral die van Suid-Afrikaanse inwonermaatskappye. Sodanige wysigings handel direk met die belastinggevolge van die sessie van ‘n reg om ‘n dividend te ontvang. Daar is tans ‘n tekort aan beslissende leiding van die belastinggevolge van ‘n sessie van die reg om ‘n dividend te ontvang, behalwe vir doeleindes van Dividendbelasting. Die doel van hierdie navorsing was om die belastinggevolge van die sessie van die reg om ‘n dividend te ontvang te ondersoek vir doeleindes van nie net Dividendbelasting nie, maar ook Belasting op die Oordrag van Sekuriteite, Belasting op Toegevoegde Waarde, Skenkingsbelasting en Normale Belasting (wat Kapitaalwinsbelasting insluit), in ‘n poging om riglyne te formuleer wat leiding verskaf. Om die belastinggevolge van ‘n sessie van die reg om ‘n dividend te ontvang te bepaal, is dit nodig om die aard van ‘n aandeel te oorweeg en om vas te stel of die reg wat sedeer word ‘n saaklike of ‘n persoonlike reg is, aangesien die belastinggevolge ten opsigte van verskillende regte kan verskil. Gebaseer op die literatuurstudie is daar gevind dat die regte geskep, as gevolg van die sessie van ‘n reg om ‘n dividend te ontvang, sal afhang van die omstandighede van elke geval en al word dit voorgele dat dit in beginsel ‘n persoonlike reg sal wees, kan dit ‘n saaklike reg wees indien die partye bedoel om ‘n vruggebruik te skep. Die onsekerheid leen verder gewig aan die noodsaaklikheid van beslissende leiding om belastingbetalers in staat te stel om hul belastingverpligtinge te bepaal. Die belastinggevolge van ‘n sessie van die reg om ‘n dividend te ontvang is ondersoek ten opsigte van Belasting op die Oordrag van Sekuriteite, Belasting op Toegevoegde Waarde, Skenkingsbelasting, Normale Belasting (wat gevolge ten opsigte van Kapitaalwinsbelasting insluit) en Dividendbelasting. Die bevindinge van die studie is saamgevat in ‘n tabel wat van hulp kan wees by die opstel van die beslissende leiding.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/101252
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