You only have 3 weeks left to file your taxes electronically – or face steep penalties

Tax season for individual taxpayers who want to file at a branch closed on the 31 October 2019 – however, the electronic filing window is still open the South African Revenue Services (SARS) says.

In a statement on Thursday (14 November), the revenue collector said that filing a tax return on any of the digital platforms, namely, SARS MobiApp and eFiling platforms for non-provisional taxpayers will close on 4 December.

“SARS wishes to thank taxpayers for their submissions thus far and is encouraged by the 3,882,111 personal income tax returns filed on a digital platform as well as at a branch. These returns include submissions for both current and previous years,” it said.

“With digital filing still available, SARS is expecting an estimated 1,744,535 as of 8 November 2019 of the outstanding returns to still be submitted through these channels. SARS wants to remind taxpayers who are yet to file, that Tax season for 2019 has been designed to make filing a return simple and easy.”


Should the extended electronic filing period not be used, administrative penalties will be levied for every month the return is outstanding, SARS said. It added that the non-filing of returns is a criminal offence.

Taxpayers with outstanding returns can download the SARS MobiApp from the Playstore or Appstore and easily perform the following actions:
  • Register for SARS eFiling;
  • Submit a return;
  • Use the phone camera to upload supporting documents;
  • Retrieve their username or reset their password;
  • View their Notice of Assessment (ITA34), among other services;
  • Request a call-back to get the assistance of a SARS tax agent.

SARS said that taxpayers who meet all of the following criteria need not submit a return:

  • Their total employment income for the year before tax is not more than R500,000;
  • They only receive employment income from one employer for the full tax year;
  • They have no other form of income (e.g. car allowance, business income, and rental income, taxable interest or income from another job);
  • They don’t have any additional allowable tax related deductions to claim (e.g. medical expenses, retirement annuity contributions and travel expenses).

“Should taxpayers visit a branch with a personal income tax return filing query, they will be assisted with self-filing via the MobiApp or eFiling platforms,”it said.

“Taxpayers with smartphones will be required to download the SARS MobiApp before they can commence filing.”

Read: South African taxpayers have been milked dry – but more taxes are coming anyway

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You only have 3 weeks left to file your taxes electronically – or face steep penalties