ADJUDICATION AS TO STAMPS
—(1) Where any instrument, whether executed or not and whether previously stamped or not, is brought to the Commissioner and the person bringing it applies to the Commissioner as to whether the instrument is chargeable with any duty and, if so, the amount of duty chargeable, the Commissioner shall adjudicate and assess the duty with which, in his judgment, the instrument is chargeable.
(1A) Where the person seeks the opinion of the Commissioner under subsection (1) as to the amount of duty chargeable, he shall in making the application for adjudication set forth the value upon which in his opinion duty is chargeable.
(1B) The person seeking the opinion of the Commissioner under subsection (1) as to the amount of duty chargeable shall pay the relevant adjudication fee prescribed in the Fourth Schedule at such time as the Commissioner may determine, and such fee shall remain payable notwithstanding that he subsequently withdraws his application for adjudication.
(2) For the purpose of the adjudication under subsection (1), the Commissioner may require any of the following:
an abstract of the instrument;
an affidavit setting out all the facts and circumstances affecting the liability of the instrument to duty or the amount of such duty;
any other evidence which he considers necessary for the adjudication or determination of duty.
(2A) The Commissioner may refuse to proceed upon any application under subsection (1) until such abstract and evidence have been furnished accordingly.
(3) Notwithstanding any other provisions of this section, the Commissioner may himself require in the case of a conveyance, lease, assignment or transfer of immovable property a certificate of the value of such property from the Chief Valuer.
(4) The request for a certificate from the Chief Valuer shall be made to him directly by the Commissioner but the Commissioner shall be entitled (in addition to the fee payable under subsection (1)) to charge the person seeking the adjudication of such property or regarding whose property the Commissioner requires a certificate, a fee as specified in the Fifth Schedule.
(5) No evidence furnished under this section shall be used against any person in any civil proceedings, except in an inquiry as to the duty with which the instrument to which it relates is chargeable.
—(1) When an instrument brought to the Commissioner under section 37 is in his opinion one of a description chargeable with duty, and —
the Commissioner determines that it is already fully stamped; or
the duty assessed by the Commissioner under section 37, or such a sum as, with the duty already paid in respect of the instrument, is equal to the duty so assessed, has been paid,
the Commissioner shall certify by issuing and attaching to the instrument a certificate of adjudication, stating that the full duty, with which it is chargeable, has been paid.
(2) When the instrument is in the opinion of the Commissioner not chargeable with duty , the Commissioner shall certify in the manner mentioned in subsection (1) that the instrument is not so chargeable.
(3) Any instrument in respect of and to which a certificate of adjudication has been issued and attached under this section shall be deemed to be duly stamped or not chargeable with duty, as the case may be; and, if chargeable with duty, shall be receivable in evidence or otherwise and may be acted upon and registered as if it had been originally duly stamped.
(4) Nothing in this section shall be deemed to require the Commissioner to certify that the full duty with which an instrument is chargeable has been paid —
unless any penalty chargeable in respect of the instrument under this Act has been paid; or
if the instrument cannot by law be stamped.
—(1) Any person who is dissatisfied with an assessment of the Commissioner under any provision of this Act may, by written notice (referred to in this Act as a notice of objection), object to the assessment and apply to the Commissioner to review the assessment.
(2) Every notice of objection must state the grounds of objection to the Commissioner’s assessment and must be made within 30 days after the date of the assessment or such further period as the Commissioner may allow in any particular case.
(3) The person giving a notice of objection must furnish further particulars and information in relation to the grounds of the objection if required to do so by the Commissioner in writing.
(4) The Commissioner shall, on receipt of a notice of objection and such further particulars and information as he may require under subsection (3), review the assessment.
(5) As soon as practicable after the objection is determined, the Commissioner must inform the person concerned in writing of the Commissioner’s decision on the objection and the reasons for his decision.
(6) Where, on review, it appears to the Commissioner that the amount of duty originally assessed is excessive, he may cancel the original assessment and make such other assessment in substitution thereof as he considers proper.
(7) The Commissioner shall serve a notice of amended assessment on the person concerned of the assessment substituted in accordance with subsection (6).
(8) The making of an objection shall not relieve the person of liability to pay the duty as required by this Act.
(9) Any reference in this Act to an assessment shall be construed as including a substituted assessment under subsection (6).
—(1) Any person who is dissatisfied with the Commissioner’s decision under section 39A(5) on a notice of objection may —
within 21 days after the person is informed of that decision and upon payment of duty in conformity therewith, appeal against the decision to the High Court; and
for that purpose, require the Commissioner to state and sign a case, setting forth the question upon which his opinion was required, and the decision made by him.
(1A) Any appeal under subsection (1) shall not be effective unless written notice of the appeal is served on the Commissioner within 21 days of the person being informed of the Commissioner’s decision under section 39A(5) on the notice of objection.
(2) The Commissioner shall thereupon state and sign a case and deliver it to the person by whom it is required, and the case may, within 7 days thereafter, be set down by him for hearing.
(3) Upon the hearing of the case, the High Court shall determine the question submitted, and, if the instrument in question is in the opinion of the Court chargeable with any duty, shall assess the duty with which it is chargeable.
(4) If it is decided by the High Court that the decision of the Commissioner is erroneous, any excess of duty which may have been paid in conformity with the erroneous decision, together with any fine or penalty which may have been paid in consequence thereof, shall be ordered by the Court to be repaid to the appellant, with or without costs as the Court may determine.
(5) If the decision of the Commissioner is confirmed, the High Court may make an order for payment to the Commissioner of the costs incurred by him in relation to the appeal.
41. When the opinion of the Commissioner with respect to the amount of duty with which an instrument is chargeable has been obtained, the instrument shall be stamped in accordance with the assessment of the Commissioner within 14 days after notice of the assessment, and in the case of an application to the High Court under section 40 within 14 days after the issue of the order of the High Court, or within such further period, in either case, as the Commissioner when giving notice of assessment or the High Court when making the order, may specify.