5 August 2021 – The South African Revenue Service (SARS) wishes to remind non-provisional taxpayers to file their returns by using the safe and convenient digital channels that are available to meet the deadline of 23 November 2021.
The digital channels available for various services include eFiling, the SARS MobiApp, the website and the newly introduced SMS service. They are safe to use and will help to prevent infection from Covid-19 as taxpayers can use them from the comfort of their home.
The SMS service allows taxpayers with limited data and access to computers or smart phones to send an SMS to SARS by using the number 47277 to check if they need to submit a return (as all taxpayers are not required to submit a return).
Taxpayers can also send an SMS to 47277 to request a tax reference number and a statement of account or balance statement. It can also be used to book an appointment to speak to a SARS agent or visit a branch. Details on how to use the SMS service are available on the SARS website www.sars.gov.za
Other digital channels such as eFiling and the SARS MobiApp can be used to reset a username and password, to file a return, obtain a tax compliance status, make a payment and many more.
SARS sent out 3.4 million auto assessments from 1 July. Nearly 1 million taxpayers to date have accepted the auto assessment, with about 800 000 of them accepting without any changes. This represents an 82% acceptance rate.
All of these interactions with SARS have been performed using eFiling and the MobiApp, with the MobiApp seeing a 60% increase in usage from last year.
SARS has paid out R 8 billion in refunds, which constitutes 87% of those taxpayers who were due to receive it. The refunds were paid to the taxpayer within 72 hours, which is further evidence that digital channels have been working to the benefit of taxpayers.
Taxpayers who are not able to use any of these services may book an appointment to visit any of the SARS branches which will re-open on 16 August. The request for an appointment will be confirmed by SARS and only taxpayers with confirmed appointments will be prioritised, and other taxpayers will be attended thereafter.
In addition, SARS will use other External Service Nodes such as mobile tax units and pop-up kiosks in various high-density areas to broaden even further our services to taxpayers. Details about dates and locations will be posted on the SARS website www.sars.gov.za
Commissioner Edward Kieswetter said, “I wish to call on taxpayers to carefully consider whether it is absolutely necessary to visit a branch or rather use our upgraded and convenient digital channels.”
For more information, contact [email protected]