Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Difficult to file the annual return to ACRA

I have just filed the annual return for my company to ACRA. I had a difficult time and had to call their hotline for help. I could not find the place to file the annual return. They have a tab that is hidden in a drop down list. They expect the public to know how to find it.

After I signed into the website with my SingPass (fortunately, my password was remembered in my browser, otherwise it would be another big hassle), I had to search the entire page to find the link to file an annual return.

I was then confused by a statement that I had to file the return in XBRL format (what is that?). Finally, I decided to ignore this statement and went to fill in the form. It turns out that the XBRL format was the form that was presented to me.

I finally managed to complete the filing. It asked me if I wish to save the page and provided me with the webpage option. That is not suitable. I found that I could print the page into a PDF, which worked well for me.

For a professional accountant or secretary who files ACRA return regularly, the website is easy to use. For a director who files the return once a year, it is a nightmare. This is the 5th year that I am filing it, and it remains a nightmare.

The people who designed the ACRA website do not understand how much unnecessary difficulty they are giving to the general public.

I also recall that ACRA has not been sending me a reminder to file the annual return for some time. Maybe, they are waiting for me to miss the deadline before they impose a fine on me.

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