FTA Extends Deadline for the Submission of VAT Returns amid Covid – 19 Outbreak

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UAE’s Federal Tax Authority (FTA) recently issued a directive in which it provided an alternate date of  May 28, 2020 for submitting VAT returns and the resulting payment in case any tax amount is due for the tax period ended March 31, 2019.

The FTA has taken this decision to support VAT registered entities and the unprecedented precautionary actions undertaken by the UAE government to stop the spread of the coronavirus (Covid-19) which includes imposing 24 – hour restriction on any kind of movement of individuals whether with or without vehicles in specific areas of the UAE. The original deadline for submitting tax returns for the tax period ended March 31, 2020 was April 28, 2019.

According to the new directive, VAT registered entities having monthly tax periods now can file their returns and submit the tax payable for the tax period from March 1 to 31, 2020 by May 28, 2020.

Meanwhile VAT registered entities that have quarterly tax periods can file their returns and submit the tax payable for the tax period from January 1, to March 31, 2020 by May 28, 2020.

The FTA has urged all the registered individuals and other business entities to ensure the data that would be included in their returns is 100% accurate, and also that authority receives the amount of tax due for the tax period ended March 31, 2020 by May 28, 2020.

The FTA has made it clear that this directive for the extension of deadline relates only to returns for tax periods that ended on March 31, 2020, and therefore, it has no affect any other tax period.

Many countries around the globe, including the UAE, continue to enforce social distancing and movement restrictions, including closures of businesses and public places, travel restrictions and directives of staying at home, in an attempt to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

In Dubai, residents are required to apply for a movement permit every three days for the purchase of essential items. In case of withdrawing cash from the ATM, the time period for applying for a moving permit is every five days.

The FTA also said that it is providing all its services remotely, relying on a completely automated electronic system which facilitates registration, submission of returns as well as payment of outstanding taxes.

The objective is to encourage all the registered entities to abide the tax laws and regulations, using the authority’s online platform while avoiding any sort of physical contact or interaction with the representatives of the concerned departments.

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