Current SARS Systemic Issues Involving the Tax Ombud - June 2024

Date: Jun 13, 2024 - Jun 13, 2024

CPD hours: 1 Hour

Time: 13:00 - 14:00

Event Type: Webinar

Presenter: Gert van Heerden
Presenter: Theo Burrows

The Office of the Tax Ombud (OTO) not only resolves taxpayer complaints but also identifies their root causes to assist SARS in improving its services to taxpayers and thereby help improve the tax administration system.


The Office of the Tax Ombud (OTO) not only resolves taxpayer complaints but also identifies their root causes to assist SARS in improving its services to taxpayers and thereby enhancing the tax administration system. These root causes are referred to as systemic issues and can be identified through various methods, such as trend and root cause analysis, media reports, and, importantly, information provided by tax practitioners.

During this complimentary webinar, Theo Burrows (Independent Tax Practitioner and volunteer Secretary General of the South African Tax Practitioners Union) and Gert van Heerden (OTO Senior Manager: Legal Services and Systemic Investigations) will discuss what constitutes a systemic issue, how it is identified, what occurs once it has been identified, and how it benefits both SARS and taxpayers. They will also review various systemic issues identified in the past and how SARS resolved some of them. Lastly, they will address the hijacking of eFiling profiles from a tax practitioner’s perspective and how SARS addresses this issue.

Webinar Content

  • The investigation and identification of systemic issues in SARS.

  • The impact of systemic investigations on the tax administration system.

  • eFiling Profile hijacking.

Competencies developed in this webinar

  • Understanding the mandate of the Tax Ombud regarding systemic issues in SARS.

  • Understanding identified systemic issues.

  • Knowing how to inform the OTO of possible systemic issues that taxpayers and practitioners experience.

  • Access to a community of tax professionals facing similar frustrations and delays.

  • The ability to accurately advise your clients and assist them as efficiently as possible.


Gert van Heerden

Senior Manager: Legal Services and Systemic Investigations
BCom, LLB, LLM from NWU

After completing his articles and being admitted as an attorney in 2008, Gert joined SARS as a legal advisor in the Legal Delivery and Support Department for the Gauteng Central Region. In 2010, he was appointed as the dedicated legal specialist for the High Complex Debt Team based at Megawatt Park in Sunninghill. In May 2012, Gert was appointed as manager of the Legal Delivery and Support Department in Gauteng Central.

In 2014, he was appointed as senior manager in the legal department of Afrocentric Health (Pty) Ltd, a position he held until he joined the Office of the Tax Ombud in May 2015. His role is to assist the Office’s internal and external stakeholders with all legal issues, from interpreting legislation to drafting and vetting legal documents.

His main goal is to assist in building the Office into an impartial entity with a reputation as a trustworthy and effective organisation that will inspire taxpayer confidence in the tax system.

Theo Burrows

The Tax Faculty: Technical Advisor

Theo Burrows is a seasoned Tax Practitioner with over 30 years of experience in the corporate, non-profit, and small business sectors. In addition to being a practising independent tax practitioner, he serves the tax community as a technical advisor for The Tax Faculty.

The combination of ongoing tax education and practical experience enables him to competently address more complex tax issues of both individuals and organisations. He draws on all these skills and combines them with in-depth knowledge and understanding of the tax environment to provide tax advisory services to both taxpayers and tax practitioners.


Attending this webinar and the successful completion of the online assessment will secure a certificate of completion for 1 hour of Tax CPD.

Event Investment

Free complimentary access.

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