E-filing race begins.

Transaction Technology is to become the first company to develop an e-business product that will allow taxpayers to receive the Inland Revenue’s #10 e-filing discount.

The company announced the software at the National Accountancy Exhibition and it is understood a roll out is likely in July – if the Revenue approves the product.

Rival provider David Forbes is understood to be at the same stage of development with a similar product. Practitioners across the country have been fuming since the Revenue announced accountants’ clients would not be eligible for the discount – which is only to be offered to individual taxpayers.

The discounts were offered by the Revenue in an attempt to encourage individual taxpayers to embrace internet technology. Self-assessment taxpayers who file their return over the internet and who pay any tax due electronically are in line to receive the discount.

However, the software provider is hoping it has found a method, using its IRIS software, to expand qualification for the cash to the clients of all accountants.

It has developed a mini tax program that will generate an eXtensible Mark-up Language (XML) return, which enables accountants to send completed tax returns by secure e-mail to the client, who is then expected to add their user identification and password before uploading the return to the Revenue.

The software, which is likely to cost less than #1,000, is the first stage of a two-part programme to launch a complete tax package, IRIS e-tax, which is set for release towards the end of this year.

Transaction Technology spokesman Ken Rozier said: ‘Accountants will receive the 48-hour acknowledgement of receipt issued by the Revenue to the client. Because the IRIS program automatically forwards the e-mail received by the client to the accountant, the agent retains control.’

– Transaction Technology was awarded a prize for having the best large stand at NAE. Butterworths Tolley won the best small stand category.

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