The long lines of taxpayers which would normally be seen outside the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) waiting for assistance in completing their tax returns, will soon be a thing of the past.??

Effective March 15, to May 10, the IRD will have a Resource Centre in the west wing of the Fifth Floor of the National Insurance Building, Fairchild Street, Bridgetown, offering several services to taxpayers.??

Word of this comes from Senior Tax Inspector, Neville Clarke, who explained that the change of location was necessary due to space constraints at their main office. "We were very unhappy with the fact that taxpayers had to stand in the sun for long periods of time to get their returns filled; so we decided to approach the relevant ministries so that we could get space to accommodate these taxpayers to have their returns filled in a more comfortable environment," he stated.

Mr. Clarke noted that in addition to filing returns, taxpayers could also "come and ask questions, and learn how to file their returns online themselves if they so desire."

He added that assistance would be given to corporations, business entities and other third party information providers in the uploading of their information to the IRD, with respect to their customers and employees.

The Senior Tax Inspector stressed that taxpayers would not be required to make appointments. "All they have to do is walk in, present their documents and we will provide the services. We will also have persons on the floor at all times to answer questions, so that taxpayers can move out quickly," he said.

The Resource Centre will be open Monday through Friday, from 8:15 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and if necessary, on Saturdays, from 9:15 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

With respect to the Centre being open annually, Mr. Clarke expressed the hope that taxpayers would be able to file their own returns online in the near future.

"We are assisting them because it is new, but most persons are familiar with filling forms online and it is no different with the tax forms. So we are hoping that in years to come, taxpayers will be weaned off of having us fill their returns for them," he contended.????

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