Pistis and Associates

VAT Return Filing

A tax return is a document through which a tax registrant submits the details of his supplies and purchases to the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) in Ghana.

VAT Return filing in Ghana depends on the tax periods allotted to your business by GRA upon VAT Registration. GRA, during the approval stages of VAT registration, determines the tax periods for registrants which can be monthly or quarterly as the authority may deem fit.

VAT Return Filing in Ghana is completely an online process through which a tax registrant can present the value of their sales and purchases and remit the tax due.

In cases where the supplies are lower than the purchases, a VAT registrant can apply for a tax refund. Application for tax refund is a separate procedure and requires submission of further details as sought by the GRA.

VAT Return Filing in Ghana does not require the submission of documents such as tax invoices, or tax credit notes at the time of return filing. The registrant is responsible to maintain all the documents related to his business and needs to furnish them as and when sought by GRA

Importance of VAT Return Filing in Ghana

Importance of VAT Return Filing in Ghana

As a tax registrant in Ghana, it is the responsibility of a business to report the details of its supplies to the authority. Compared to the other tax regimes, VAT return filing in Ghana is relatively a simple process provided you understand the law thoroughly.

As it is construed as an uncomplicated process, we have seen a lot of businesses taking it lightly and end up paying hefty penalties. Therefore, it is very important that you file your VAT return properly and on time.

Penalties associated with VAT Return filing in Ghana

  • If a taxable person fails to file his return on or before the due date, he will incur a non-filing penalty of GH₵ 500 and GH₵ 10 Everyday
  • If a taxable person fails to remit his dues on or before the due date, he will incur a non-payment penalty as follows:
    » 2% of the unpaid tax is due immediately.
    » 4% is due on the seventh day following the deadline for payment.
    » 1% daily penalty will be charged on any amount that is still unpaid one calendar month after the due date for payment, up to a maximum of 300%.

These VAT penalties will be automatically computed and charged to your GRA account from the date of default. Such VAT penalties can result in a huge cash outflow to a business which can be avoided if proper attention is given to tax return filing.

Some of the common errors businesses make while VAT Return Filing.

It is very crucial for a business to understand the layout and reasoning for each column in a VAT return. Only by a proper understanding of the law, one can understand the intended use of a particular column in a tax return.

Some of the most common errors we have noted are as follows:

  1.  Failure to issue a valid tax invoice as per provisions of the law
  2. Non-maintenance of proper records
  3. Wrong emirate-wise reporting
  4. Improper adjustment of Bad debts
  5. Wrong usage of the ‘Adjustment’ column in case of imports
  6. Wrong classification between Exports and Out of Scope supplies
  7. Incorrect input claims including personal expenses and entertainment expenses
  8. Improper adjustment of Input taxes in wrong tax periods
  9. The wrong usage of Refund and VDF Forms
  10. Non-disclosure of Import of service

The above-mentioned VAT Return Filing errors are only the tip of the iceberg and can result in huge errors in the tax return. A business needs to be extremely careful in assessing its capability to address these issues as they may lead to non-compliance.

Our role in VAT Return Filing

Our members are seasoned by supporting more than 2000+ clients across Ghana in successfully submitting their tax returns. We consider it our responsibility to keep ourselves updated on the ever-changing tax scenarios in the region.

We can advise you on the accurate tax treatments of your business by analyzing your transactions and identifying the tax points involved in them.

As VAT Consultants in Ghana, with our expertise and knowledge in the related field after encountering practical scenarios which we face on a day-to-day basis, we shall extend our guidance, support, execution, and resolution on all your challenges encountered which will be based on the provisions and guidelines issued by GRA.

Contact us

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