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Sars cuts down on paperwork in favour of new system that makes taxpayers' lives easier

By unknown | May 10, 2007 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Robert Laing

Robert Laing

Tax day falls on Halloween this year. South African Revenue Service (Sars) has cut the IT12S form, which most salaried employees fill in, from 10 pages to a single sheet printed on both sides to make completing tax forms less of a nightmare for taxpayers.

It's now easier to eFile, which means filling in a tax form by registering for an online account at, because Sars no longer demands IRP5s and other supporting documents. But taxpayers should keep these documents for five years in case Sars demands to see them.

Sars has extended its deadline to October 31 because of the delay in posting its new streamlined tax forms.

The number of Sars tax forms has been cut from five to two: self-employed people and others whose taxes are more complex than the average wage slave will also need to fill in the IT12C form.

Taxpayers who have not received their forms by the end of August should call 086-012-1218 or visit any Sars branch. The new forms can also be downloaded from

Sars said that the sooner people e-mail or post their tax returns, the sooner they will get their refunds. Businesses, on the other hand, won't be penalised for eFiling by having to pay their taxes sooner.

Those who submit their tax returns via the Internet have an additional advantage because Sars then allows objections and disputes to be handled online.

Taxpayers who do not have bank accounts will have to make special arrangements to accommodate electronic transfers because Sars is no longer posting cheques in order to cut down on fraud.

The taxman has also invested in systems to better track the progress of tax forms. People will be able to check the progress of their tax assessment through a call centre.

Finance Minister Trevor Manuel said at the launch of the simplified tax return system that revenue collection has grown from R165,3billion to R495billion over the past 10 years.


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