85 Ruling on general questions


(1) The Commissioner may, by notification in the official Gazette, publish his ruling on the answer to any question involving the interpretation of this Act or application of this Act to a class of persons or class of transactions.

(2) A ruling issued by the Commissioner under this section may be issued subject to such restrictions and conditions as the Commissioner may deem fit.

(3) The ruling shall be treated as coming into effect on the date stated in the ruling (which may be a date prior to the publication of the ruling) or, if no date is stated in the ruling, on the date of publication of the official Gazette.

(4) Where 

(a) the Commissioner has published a ruling in respect of a class of persons or transactions;

(b) a person implements a transaction or undertakes any action based on the ruling;

(c) the ruling has, at the time of implementing the transaction or undertaking the action, not been withdrawn by the Commissioner; and

(d) according to the terms of the ruling, the ruling purports to apply to the transaction or action undertaken by the person;

no assessment which is inconsistent with the ruling, may be raised by the Commissioner against that person and no penalty may be imposed on the person if the ruling is later held incorrect.

Explanation.- A person may rely on the Commissioners ruling or on the determination made under section 84 of this Act.

(5) The Commissioner may, by notification published in the official Gazette, withdraw or qualify a ruling already issued under this section but such withdrawal or qualification shall not affect the entitlement of any person to rely on the ruling with respect to any transaction or action commenced or completed by him prior to such withdrawal or qualification.