05 Nov 2020

  • Simplified Corporate Income Tax Return for Small Companies 
  • New Digital Solutions for Companies 

Companies will enjoy a simpler tax filing experience in the 2020 Corporate Tax Filing season. The Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) has launched a new, simplified Corporate Income Tax (CIT) Return called Form C-S (Lite) which allows smaller companies to save time and file their taxes easily. New digital solutions such as fund transfers via PayNow, direct filing from accounting software, and digitised notices for companies are also being rolled out.

Simplified Corporate Income Tax Return

This year, around 60,000 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) can benefit from IRAS’ new, simplified CIT Return, Form C-S (Lite). Form C-S (Lite) is introduced from YA 2020 to make tax filing easier and faster for small companies. Form C-S (Lite) requires companies with straightforward tax matters to complete only six essential fields (such as their revenue and net profit/loss), a two-third reduction compared to Form C-S. To qualify to e-File Form C-S (Lite), companies only need to fulfil the current criteria to e-File Form C-S and have an annual revenue of S$200,000 or below. Similar to the Form C-S, companies filing Form C-S (Lite) are not required to submit their financial statements and tax computations to IRAS. However, companies should continue to prepare these documents and be ready to submit them in the event that IRAS requests for them.

New Digital Solutions for Companies

To further enhance taxpaying experience for companies, IRAS has also accelerated digitalisation plans for Corporate Tax.

  • Corporate Tax payments and fund transfers via PayNow for the first time

Companies can now pay their taxes seamlessly via PayNow QR, the latest addition to the list of payment modes available in IRAS’ myTax Portal. Along with the convenience that the Scan and Pay function provides, they will also benefit from instant settlement and real-time updates of their outstanding tax balance.

From mid-2021, IRAS will also introduce PayNow Corporate as a new e-refund option for companies to receive CIT refunds, on top of GIRO and telegraphic transfers. By selecting PayNow Corporate as their preferred mode of refund, companies will be able to receive their refunds within 7 days from the credit arising. To be eligible for this refund mode, companies must link their Unique Entity Number to their corporate bank account via internet banking. Those interested in applying for PayNow Corporate can seek assistance from their respective banks.

For the list of banks participating in PayNow services, please refer to Annex A.

  • First Seamless Filing Solution by IRAS and ACRA

This year, IRAS is introducing a digital solution that incorporates statutory filing requirements into an accounting software, in a collaboration with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA). Co-created with 5 software developer1, the enhanced accounting software automates the preparation of tax computations and allows SMEs to file their CIT Returns (Form C-S) directly to IRAS. Within the same filing session, companies can also file the Annual Returns with Financial Statements in Simplified XBRL format to ACRA directly from the software via the API2 technology.

Currently, the solution is catered for qualifying trading companies of Form C-S filing and can potentially benefit 200,000 SMEs with annual revenue of $5 million or below.  Eligible SMEs are encouraged to e-File through this solution to enjoy time savings of more than 90% as well as to minimise reporting errors in their returns. By digitising their financial records through an accounting software, SMEs can also ensure that they have convenient access to essential information required to make effective business decisions.

Please refer to Annex B (PDF, 29KB) for the list of support schemes that SMEs can tap on for funding of the enhanced accounting software.

  • Digitised Notices for Companies from May 2021

From May 2021, most of IRAS’ notices will be digitised and paper notices will be phased out. With digitised notices, companies will enjoy greater convenience in the following ways: 

  1. Fast Access – Convenient and instant access of notices, anytime, anywhere.
  2. Timely Notifications – Receive timely email notifications when a notice is ready for viewing in myTax Portal.

  3. Easy Management – View up to 3 years of past notices without rummaging through physical files.

  4. Safety and Security – Access IRAS’ notices in myTax Portal, a safe and secure platform.

Come January 2021, companies which need to update their email address to receive the e-Notifications from IRAS can do so online via the e-service “Update Notice Preferences” in myTax Portal. Through the same e-service, companies that are not ready to receive digitised notices may also indicate their preference to continue receiving paper notices.

Companies will receive a letter from IRAS in early 2021 with the details on digital communications.

Compulsory e-Filing by 15 Dec 2020; Single Filing Deadline from YA 2021

IRAS reminds all companies, including those with no business activities or those in a loss position, to e-File their YA 2020 CIT returns (Form C-S/ C) by 15 December 2020.

Starting from YA 2020, e-Filing of the CIT Returns is compulsory for all companies and paper filing is no longer accepted. The compulsory e-Filing of CIT Returns started in YA 2018 and was implemented in three phases. This year, more than 170,000 companies who were not in the previous compulsory e-Filing groups are required to e-File.

The extended tax filing due date of 15 December, which was initially introduced as an incentive to encourage companies to e-File their tax returns, will no longer be available from YA 2021. All companies will be required to e-File their YA 2021 CIT Returns by 30 November 2021. IRAS will remind companies of this filing due date nearer to YA 2021.

Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore

1 Currently, the seamless filing solution is available through accounting software, Netiquette O2O Business Suite and SMECEN. It will be made available progressively in AutoCount Accounting, Deskera ERP and Realtimme Cloud Solutions.  

2 API refers to Application Programming Interface, which is a software intermediary that allows two applications to talk to each other.

Annex A: List of participating banks for PayNow services

Annex A - List of participating banks for PayNow services