The Large Taxpayer Office (LTO) is a department under the Domestic Tax Revenue Division (DTRD) of the GRA operating as a specialised office which focuses exclusively on total tax administration of Large Taxpayers identified by the Authority.
The criteria for classifying existent and potential Large Taxpayers are companies and/or individuals involved in economic activities which yield or – per their sizes – are estimated to yield annual turnovers of GH₵5 million and above.
The category also comprises specialist industries irrespective of their turnover. Examples are upstream and midstream petroleum companies, banking institutions, insurance companies, mining companies except quarries, and members of groups of companies where at least one member qualifies as a large taxpayer. All large taxpayers are on a self-assessment regime and contribute approximately 70% of total Domestic Tax Revenue Division (DTRD) tax revenue.
The department came to fruition as a result of modernising all domestic tax procedures for efficient use of resources in line with best practices in tax administration.
In that light, GRA seeks to offer improved taxpayer services that meet the specific needs of varied taxpayer groups in Ghana. One of which is the ongoing structural change that would see the LTO have desks in the newly-deployed Taxpayer Service Centres (TSC), making it wide-reaching in efficient service delivery.
The department can be found off the John Evans Atta-Mills High Street in the former Standard Chartered Bank Head Office; adjacent to the Bank of Ghana.
The LTO is organised with the following operational functions:
The Unit’s functions include assisting taxpayers with the necessary information and education to enable them comply with all their obligations including non-tax obligations, interactions with taxpayers or groups of taxpayers.
The Taxpayer Service Unit is the first point of enquiry, coordination and follow-up with other LTO units. It undertakes the following:
The Unit also ensures the processing of returns and payments and lodges revenue collected.
This Unit ensures taxpayer filing and payment through voluntary compliance. It applies the necessary penalties and interests to late payment and filing, processes Tax Credit and Tax Clearance Certificates and makes recommendations to granting or otherwise of exemptions and other applications. The unit also ensures the management of tax arrears and enforces collection of overdue taxes through the use of legal compliance and enforcement tools including garnishments, seal offs and swoops.
The Audit Unit’s function is to improve taxpayer compliance through effective risk-based audit programmes and verification of taxpayer declarations through examination of books of accounts among others.
The compliance/risk-based audit programme is driven by the objective of ensuring completeness, accuracy and validity of taxpayer declarations and records. In the process of verifying correctness of taxpayer self-assessments, the unit may issue administrative/additional assessments to taxpayers.
The LTO secures tax revenue by providing auxiliary services to taxpayer obligations and assisting them with return filing and payments. Many others include:
The office also discharges the tax administration’s legal as well as discretionary obligation within its mandate towards the taxpayers. These include consideration of and processing of the following: