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21 July
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27 July

2020 Tax filing season and important changes

The 2020 filing season covers the period 1 March 2019 to 29 February 2020.

In support of the President’s call to the Covid-19 pandemic, that Social Distancing be observed at all times and that we should at most stay indoors and limit movement, SARS is responding by rapidly enhancing its efforts to enhance filing requirements for individual taxpayers and removing the need to travel in 2020. Through the increased use of third-party data, SARS will obtain more information regarding your tax affairs more accurately than ever.

Due to the pandemic, tax filing season has been delayed and will only open on the 1st of September 2020. SARS have advised that they will however commence a new process of issuing auto-assessments for non-provisional taxpayers during the course of 1 August 2020 and 31 August 2020.

We strongly suggest that you supply us with your tax documents during the course of August as we will also need to dispute or confirm and accept any auto-assessments issued by SARS. The correctness of the auto-assessment can only be verified against your own financial data. We accordingly need you to provide us with your tax   information as soon as possible.

Individual income tax return filing dates for the 2020 filing season have been revised as follows:

  • 1 August to 31 August 2020: Auto assessments for Non-Provisional taxpayers.
  • 1 September to 16 November 2020: 
  • 1 September to 22 October 2020: Taxpayers who cannot file electronically can do so at a SARS branch.
  • 1 September 2020 to 29 January 2021: Provisional taxpayers who file electronically.

The delayed filing dates will not effect the interest charged by SARS on tax due for the 2020 tax period. Such interest will accrue from 1 October 2020.

If there is a possible shortfall on tax payments for the 2020 fiscal year on provisional tax, we will still be able to calculate your top-up payment in order to provide you with the option of settling your income tax liability “interest-free” on or before 30 September 20. We therefore need your information as soon as possible.

Due to the time limits we kindly request that you forward the following documentation (where applicable) to our office as soon as it has been received:

  • Income – IRP5 or IT3(a) certificate
  • Income from investments/Interest on loan accounts – IT3(b) certificate
  • Local/foreign Capital Gain/Loss – IT3(c) certificate (including sale of property, shares in private companies, etc.)
  • Any other income – please provide details (e.g. inheritance received, etc.)
  • Business income – full details of income and expenditure
  • Lump sum income – IRP5 certificate
  • Rental income – full details of property, income and expenditure including period let
  • Medical contributions certificate and expenses – medical aid certificate and proof of “other expenses”
  • Donations – S18A certificate reflecting proof of donation made
  • Pension Fund or Retirement Annuity Fund contribution certificates – certificate reflecting proof of contribution paid
  • Travelling allowance – make/model of motor vehicle, registration number, cost thereof and opening and closing km’s (kindly provide us with your compulsory logbook detailing split between business/ private mileage, destination, reason for travel).  Please detail any change in motor vehicles.
  • Subsistence allowance – detail number of days spent away from home on business (local and international) and kindly include destination/i> 
  • Changes to Assets and Liabilities including sale and purchase of fixed property.

We wish to stress that we cannot take any responsibility for incorrect or incomplete information furnished to us. Furthermore, we cannot be held responsible for any penalty charges for late submission of your return should you fail to provide us with the required information timeously.

Please advise us if any of your personal details have changed (e.g. physical address, telephone numbers or e-mail address).  SARS require details of your banking account irrespective of whether you are entitled to a refund or not.  Should you have provided us with this information, please confirm that the details remain the same.

Kindly note that we cannot request documentation on your behalf from third parties (i.e. previous employers, insurance companies, banks, etc.) for confidentiality reasons.  It is therefore of the utmost importance that you provide us with all the necessary documentation and information to enable us to submit your tax return correctly and timeously.

We wish to point out that SARS are confirming investment income information received from Financial Institutions with details recorded in the tax returns submitted.  Please ensure all investment income is supplied to us.

Please do not hesitate to contact us should you require any further information.

This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied upon as professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your financial adviser for specific and detailed advice. Errors and omissions excepted. (E&OE)

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+27 (0) 11 622 0926

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