SINCE the new Employer's Annual Return (S02) form was introduced for the reporting period 2011 onwards, Tax Administration Jamaica (TAJ), National Housing Trust (NHT) and the National Insurance Scheme (NIS) have partnered to host a series of workshops and sensitisation sessions for stakeholders across the island. Additionally, special information desks have been set up at tax offices and NHT offices to guide employers about the new filing procedure. However, with the March 31 filing due date fast approaching, employers have been asking for further assistance to better understand more about the new S02 form. The following are answers to some of the frequently asked questions.
What is the new Employer's Annual Return (SO2) form?
This is a single return which consolidates employer's annual payroll information for NHT, NIS, Education Tax, and PAYE (Income Tax).
Who must submit Employer's Annual Return (SO2) forms?
ALL employers with one (1) or more employee from whom payroll deductions were made during the year stated in respect of NIS, NHT, Education Tax, and/or PAYE (Income Tax).
What is the benefit of the new Employer's Annual Return (SO2) form to the employer?
The employer now only has to complete a single return for ALL payroll information and no longer has to visit several different agencies to submit annual payroll returns. The S02 replaces:
C4 - Employer's Annual Return: Declaration and Certificate (NIS/NHT)
IT06 - Employer's Annual Return PAYE (Income Tax)
IT06 - PAYE Employer's Annual Return Schedule 5 & 6
ET02 - EDTAX Self-Employed Annual Return (with employees)
ET03 - EDTAX Organisation Annual Return and Deduction Cards
Can the old Annual Return forms STILL be used?
The old Annual Return Forms CANNOT be used to report on payroll information for year 2011 and onwards. However, employers must use the old forms for reporting on past due returns for year 2010 or before, and these must be submitted separately to the respective agencies.
Can the new Employer's Annual Return (SO2) form be used by self-employed persons?
Yes, but only for reporting payroll information on behalf of their employees. Any information relating to the personal status of self-employed persons must continue to be submitted on the appropriate existing forms, eg IT01 for Income Tax and ET01 for Education Tax.
Can the Employer's Annual Return (SO2) forms be submitted electronically?
Yes. Employers can submit the S02 form electronically via Tax Administration Jamaica's secured website, www.jamaicatax-online.gov.jm. Employers with more than 40 employees are encouraged to use this option.
What proof will I receive that I have submitted an Employer's Annual Return (SO2) form electronically?
The online system will automatically generate a receipt number and a copy of the endorsed return which you should print and/or save for your record.
Where is the manual S02 form to be submitted?
The single S02 form CAN be submitted at either a tax office or a NHT office.
What proof will I receive if I submit an Employer's Annual Return (S02) form at an office?
You will get a signed Return Deposit Slip or Fact of Filing Receipt.
Will I get a receipt for NHT when I submit Employer's Annual Return (S02) forms at a tax office?
You will get a single receipt from the office where you submit the return (whether NHT or the tax office). This receipt will show the annual amount declared for each statutory deduction type.
How will information be passed to the other agencies? For example, if I submit my return at a tax office, how will NHT get the information?
Each return will be centrally scanned and made available to all the agencies. Returns submitted online will be accessible electronically through a secure port by all agencies.
What happens if I submit an incomplete Employer's Annual Return (SO2) form?
An incomplete S02 return will NOT be accepted. Make sure that the TRN and NIS numbers for each employee are included.
Do Schedule B and Schedule C need to be completed and submitted even if there are no related deductions or benefits to employees?
No. There is no need for an employer to complete and submit Schedule B and/or Schedule C if it is not applicable.
When I complete the Employer's Annual Return (S02) form, if there is an overpayment for one deduction type (for example, NIS) and a short payment for another tax type (for example, Education Tax), can I use the overpayment to offset the short payment?
No. You will still need to pay the outstanding amount and apply to the relevant agency for a refund. Efforts are being made to change this process.
The Talking Tax series is prepared by the Communications Unit of Tax Administration Jamaica to guide the public on their rights and obligations. To get additional information and guidance on this or any other tax matter, persons may contact 1-888-TAX-HELP (829-4357) or www.jamaicatax.gov.jm.