A great many people appear not genuine to figure out how to apply for the KRA waiver. The idea of the Kenya Revenue Authority enforcers coming to search for you should make you need to become familiar with the procedure. What a great many people overlook is that filing taxes is a resident’s duty. Be that as it may, when they don’t, it pulls in punishments. For whatever length of time that you have not taken care of those punishments, you owe the government. You can apply for a waiver to have the punishments expelled.

KRA tax penalty is a fine charged based on the failure of a person to file his or her annual returns or failing to pay taxes. Failure to file your returns comes at a cost, which is referred to as tax penalties. A non-compliant taxpayer can request a tax waiver; not to pay certain penalties for a given tax period. A penalty exemption will be granted if reasonable cause exists. Reasonable cause happens from circumstances beyond the taxpayer’s control. Failure to file returns because of cases such as unemployment or sicknesses can provide good cause to seek exemption. However, getting your penalties waived is not a guarantee.

What is a Penalty Waiver?

Most people have been asking, what is a KRA waiver? This is a non-compliant taxpayer request not to pay certain penalties for a certain tax period. A penalty exemption will be granted if reasonable cause exists. Reasonable cause happens from circumstances beyond the taxpayer’s control.

How to know if you have a KRA penalty

To know whether you have a KRA penalty, just log into your KRA iTax account; under ‘Debt and Enforcement’, click on ‘Request for Waiver of Penalties and Interests’. Under ‘Details of waiver’, click on ‘Tax obligation (Income Tax Resident Individual)’ and then on ‘Tax type’ select ‘Penalty’.

Requirements for KRA waiver application

The following requirements are needed to apply for a tax penalty waiver on the KRA iTax portal.

  1. KRA PIN and iTax password to enable you to log into the KRA iTax portal
  2. KRA waiver letter outlining the reasons why you require the penalties to be waived

How do I get a KRA penalty waiver?

You may have genuine reasons that would get you cleared from Kenya Revenue Authority penalties. However, the question that comes in most people’s minds is, ‘How do I request a KRA waiver?’

You must remember the email address that you had used while doing your Kenya Revenue Authority PIN registration. This will help you retrieve your Kenya Revenue Authority PIN much easier. Below is a procedure that you should follow on while applying for a Kenya Revenue Authority penalty exemption:

1. Open the official KRA website
2. Enter your Kenya Revenue Authority PIN into the PIN box and click continue
3. Then enter your ‘PIN’s password. Key in the arithmetic sum of the security stamp and log in
4. Then click on the menu labeled Debts and Enforcement
5. Then click on Apply for Waiver for Penalties and Interests
6. Choose Applicant Type as Taxpayer, which is the KRA waiver application letter or in other words KRA waiver application form or simpler term the KRA waiver form.
7. Then click on Tax Obligation, e.g. Income Tax Resident Individual or VAT. This is an example of a KRA waiver letter, just in case you were worried about where you would get a KRA waiver application letter sample or template.
8. Select tax type from the options given: ”Penalty”, ”Interest” or both.
9. Finally, choose each year that a penalty exists and enter the value you wish to request for exemption.
10. Then click submit to upload the document for a waiver application.

Follow through the whole procedure and ensure that you key in all the essential required details, being keen on each gap that you need to fill into.

How to write a KRA waiver letter

KRA waiver letter is a document/letter address to KRA stating the reasons why you need the penalties imposed on you for the late filing of returns to be removed or simple terms waived. KRA waiver processing is a structured process that needs to be validated by an officer before the waiver is approved or rejected. Besides, it is not guaranteed. It can be rejected. The processing of the waiver takes 90 days. There is no specific format for writing the waiver letter. You just need to write a compelling reason(s) why the penalty occurred.

Further, in your letter, you also need to justify why you are requesting a waiver. The waiver letter is normally addressed to the station manager, where your waiver application will be processed. The KRA station is written on the PIN certificate. You can also follow up with your tax station on the progress of the application. Kindly note that your reasons for not filing the returns on time are what will determine whether the KRA waiver application will be approved or not.

The Dangers of not Applying for Tax Exemption

It is now clear to you as to why you need to apply for the tax exemption. Failure to do so will only mount to huge amounts of money that you will owe the government. As long as you applied for the Kenya Revenue Authority PIN, it is your responsibility to ensure that you file your returns annually before the tax authorities given the deadline. This is regardless of whether you file nil returns. Penalties are charged on the total amount of tax due.

Initially, before the digitization of the Kenya Revenue Authority system, your only chance for applying for an exemption meant that you had to go queue up. The disadvantage of going to the KRA offices to apply for an exemption was that your luck depended on how well you convinced the KRA official. It was not a promising procedure, but it was the only way. However, things have changed, and with digitization, the process can be done at the comfort of your home or cyber.

The reason why most people do not how to get exemptions is that a large number is ignorant of the information available. This mostly is seen in young citizens, especially those between the 20s and 30s. To some, it is easier and faster to apply for a Kenya Revenue Authority PIN, but it seems like a hustle to file returns, which results in penalties. Learning how to apply for the KRA waiver will help you avoid heavy future penalties. Log into your iTax personal account and follow the above procedures of applying for tax exemption. This way, you do not have to worry about living in government debts or having KRA officials looking for you.

Geoffrey Nevine — IT Services and IT Consulting

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