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ZRA explains PAYE refund

BUUMBA CHIMBULU writes
@SunZambian
PAY-As-You (PAYE) can only be refunded if there is a genuine mistake in the tax computation by the employer resulting in the employee being overtaxed, says the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA).

ZRA Corporate Communications Manager, Topsy Sikalinda, said a refund could be made when an employee did not exhaust the tax credit for that particular charge year.
Mr Sikalinda said a refund could also be made when getting a refund of tax deducted on tithe from an approved public benefit organisation with a valid certificate.
He said in an interview that this was so even on all other tax types.
“In order for one to be refunded the over payment, their employer must have been remitting the Pay as You Earn Tax to the ZRA and the submission for a refund can only be done after the end of that particular charge year.
“The claim is only done on income accrued in the final year of employment,” Mr Sikalinda said.
He however regretted that ZRA offices were confronted with numerous cases of the PAYE Refund with most people thinking it was guaranteed income or refund after separating with their employers.
Mr Sikalinda explained that what was refundable was not the tax paid during employment but the overpayment on the PAYE that could have resulted from pay roll errors or unwarranted deductions in relation to income tax.
“All withholding taxes are intended to be taxed once income is earned, only withholding on wages or salary is normally known as pay-as-you-earn (PAYE).
“Let us start by understanding that a tax refund is a refund of tax which has been overpaid, Pay as you earn refund mostly mistaken as a pension or guaranteed refund of all PAYE paid during one’s employment is not refundable at all,” he said.

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