Frequently Asked Questions

We are constantly striving to keep the Frequently Asked Questions up to date as we continue to enhance the eFiling service.

If you require any information not found here, please don't hesitate to contact our Call Centre who will be more than happy to assist you.

Click here for Technical Queries

Specific FAQ's

Taxpayer Centricity
Request for Return, completion and submission of Income Tax Returns part 1
Request for Return, completion and submission of Income Tax Returns part 2
Provisional Tax

General

  • What are the benefits of eFiling?
    • Tax returns can be done simply and conveniently on-line.
    • eFiling is free. Other benefits include extended VAT and income tax deadlines, ease of payments and faster processing times.
    • eFiling is paperless and submissions are instant and reliable.
  • Can I use eFiling for all Income Tax/VAT returns?
    • Yes, the due date for VAT returns for both filing and payment is the last business day of the month if the return is filed via eFiling and payment is made either via eFiling or EFT on or before that day.
  • How do I register for eFiling?
    • From the home page, click on the Register button and follow the on-screen instructions. Please ensure that you have your tax registration numbers, company registration number and your identity number on hand. Once you have completed the registration process it takes between 24 and 48 hours before your returns are issued electronically to the eFiling service.
  • What is the cost for the SARS eFiling Service?
    • While eFiling is a free service please note your bank will still charge you their normal fee for transactions should you make use of our payment options to settle your tax liabilities.
  • How do I sign an electronic return?
    • eFiling submissions are embedded with an electronic signature. A submitted return on eFiling is legally equivalent to a signed physical return. You therefore do not need to have a signature on an electronic return submitted via eFiling.
  • Can I only submit my current returns on eFiling? What about prior returns that have not been submitted?
    • All of your outstanding returns can be submitted via eFiling.
  • Can I access historical data with respect to my returns and payments?
    • Yes. SARS eFiling keeps a minimum of five years history of both returns and payments. But these only apply to those returns and payments made via eFiling so if you’re a new user your previous history will not reflect on eFiling.
  • Can I recall a return if submitted in error ?
    • Yes. Under the returns history section you can recall your return on the same day. If a payment was effected, the return cannot be reversed due to transaction processes with the bank. You can submit a Request for Correction in respect of individual income tax returns if you made a mistake.

Confidentiality

  • Who will see my return?
    • To prevent unauthorised access to any data, all transmissions received and transmitted by this service from both SARS as well as from you, the taxpayer, are encrypted. Your bank provides the encryption for electronic payments processed by them. The information will be held in a secure format on our host system and will only be made available for access by you, SARS and the SARS eFiling Call Centre for support purposes. See our Privacy Statement for further details.
  • What measures are in place to ensure the confidentiality of information on SARS eFiling?
    • We go to great lengths to protect the confidentiality of taxpayer information. All transmissions we receive are encrypted. Before we accept a return for processing, it has to meet strict identification standards and specifications. If it does not, we do not accept the form. See our Privacy Statement for further details.
  • If the SARS eFiling Call Centre staff have access to my information, what is to prevent them from disclosing my information?
    • All SARS eFiling staff sign a Confidentiality Agreement and this document is kept with SARS. Our staff are also covered by strict legislation in the Income Tax Act which makes it an offence to disclose any taxpayer information to an unauthorised person.

Payments

Note: eFiling has an impact on to your current Debit Orders
Should you register on eFiling, your current regular debit order facility with SARS will automatically be stopped. The eFiling facility does allow for an authorised debit pull mechanism as an alternative i.e. You setup the account details and each month approve the specific amount you wish to have.debited from your account

  • Can I pay from multiple bank accounts?
    • Yes, you can pay each of your taxes from a different bank account. Or you can use our split pay facility and have multiple accounts to pay a particular tax type.
  • How do I load my Internet Banking account on eFiling?
    • Once you have received confirmation that your eFiling account is activated, you can load your banking details under the menu on the post login home page.
  • Are post-dated transactions accepted by any Banking facility?
    • Post-dated transactions are allowed for registered eFilers for all the major banks. It must be noted however, that ABSA Direct does not allow post dated transactions, and Standard Bank Business Online (CATS) require transactions on the day that the transaction is created.
  • Can I pay outstanding penalties and interest on eFiling?
    • Yes, when you are logged in, you can click on "Create additional payments" under the Returns section. You will need to manually enter all the details and select the tax type you wish to pay. If you need to submit your payment for a return that has not been issued electronically, select the ‘Payment' option. For penalties and interest, select the "Allocation Payment" option.
  • Do I have to be registered on eFiling to submit payments?
    • No, you can submit your payment on eFiling using the Tax Payments facility under the Services Offered section. However, for security reasons, you will need to capture your internet banking details online in order for you to authorise the payment
  • Can a registered eFiler make a payment for a taxpayer that is not registered?
    • Yes, by making use of the Tax Payments facility under the Services Offered section
  • If I underpaid on the initial payment how do I specify that I am making a top-up payment?
    • Using the Tax Payments facility under the Services Offered section, you can select the "Normal" payment option and specify the period
  • Under the "Allocation Payment" option for the tax types, VAT, PAYE, UIF and SDL the tax period is not required, why?
    • This is a payment made for multiple periods
    • The payment will be automatically allocated by SARS in the following order
      • To outstanding penalties on all periods
      • To outstanding interest on all periods
      • To outstanding tax/levies/contributions on all periods
      • Finally to additional tax/penalty on all periods
  • How does SARS ensure the reconciliation of manual payments with tax returns submitted online?
    • When submitting a tax form on-line, the relevant reference information is recorded as a debit on the relevant taxpayer account. When a manual payment is made the same reference information is recorded at the SARS Cash cash hall. When the payment transaction is submitted, the system generates a credit to the same taxpayer account (cancelling out the initial debit details.)
    • If you decide to use a payment facility other than eFiling, the extended payment date for VAT payments will not be allowed. (Please note that this does not apply to VAT returns with a diesel rebate).
  • Can I use my credit card to make payments to SARS?
    • No, SARS will only accept payments from bank accounts.

Tax Agents and Multiple Companies

  • I am a tax agent. What facilities are available to me?
    • You can either register your client for eFiling or, if they have already registered, access your client's account and conduct all of the regular eFiling functions on your client's behalf (as per your own agreements and privacy policies with your client.)
  • How do I register my clients?
    • Once you have registered and been authenticated as an Agent with SARS eFiling, you can register your clients as eFilers with SARS. The request for registration will be processed and once the accuracy of information submitted is confirmed, you will be notified via email and thereafter eFiling will be activated for your client.
  • Will the information held for my clients be secure?
    • The SARS eFiling site deploys the very latest data encryption technologies available. SARS eFiling will take all reasonable precautions to keep the personal information disclosed by you secure, if and when such information needs to be passed on to SARS or any of the banking institutions.
    • Inspections are carried out on a regular basis to monitor the occurrence of security breaches, and the relevant corrective measures are deployed if required. SARS is however not accountable for any breach of security by Agents or any third parties; nor is SARS responsible for the privacy policies of Agents and/or third parties or how information is treated within these third parties.
  • Will information held for my clients be accessible to anyone else?
    • You, as your client's Tax Agent, may choose to give your client access to their account information. For support purposes, SARS eFiling consultants will have access to your client's personal information. It is your responsibility to ensure your clients are well aware of these details. Please refer to the SARS eFiling Privacy Policy for more information.
  • How will my clients pay their taxes to SARS?
    • Your clients may pay their taxes to SARS via the payment mechanisms provided by SARS eFiling for the payment of EMP201, VAT201 and IRP6 taxes. Alternatively, your clients may use any other SARS approved payment mechanism in which case they must make sure they submit the correct reference information
  • How do you authenticate my clients; or me for that matter?
    • On receipt of a request for registration, you will be required to provide proof of identity. A SARS eFiling Access Number is issued via the SARS eFiling Call Centre once your agency or your client, as the applicant, has been authenticated. You will not be able to logon to eFiling without the Access Number. The Access Number will however only be necessary on the first logon; thereafter only the User ID and password will be required.
  • Can I set up my own security on SARS eFiling?
    • Yes. As a Tax Agent you can give specific access to your clients using the User Management facility. You may also set up additional users within your agency and allocate access levels to those users
  • Will I be able to see consolidated information about my clients?
    • Yes. Various reconciliation and statistical reports are available for reporting on all clients, their tax returns and payment activities over a specified period.
  • Can my clients also access their own information?
    • You, as your client's Tax Agent, may choose to give your client access to their account information. For support purposes, SARS eFiling consultants will have access to your client’s personal information. Please refer to the SARS eFiling Privacy Policy for further information.
  • How can I give a client access to do payments without changing the return?
    • You can supply your client a UserID under "Step 5 - Login Details" and then only give them access to "Payment Submission" under "Manage Users - Permissions".

eFiling Technical Queries

  • Description of problem
    • When I try to save or refresh my 2010 Flash tax return on eFiling, my browser either hangs or crashes. What should I do?
  • You may be affected if you use any one of the following software
    • Windows XP Service Pack 3
    • Internet Explorer 6.x
    • Flash Player 10.x
  • Symptom
    • Users of Flash Player experience browser hanging or crashing when attempting to save or refresh the new Flash 2010 individual tax return on SARS eFiling.
  • What causes this problem
    • If you are using Internet Explorer 6.x, you may experience this problem due to your internet proxy settings.
    • What is happening is that Flash Player is attempting to ‘contact’ the following URL: http://fpdownload2.macromedia.com/get/flashplayer/update/current/install/version.xml10.0.45.2. However, this domain is being blocked due to your proxy authentication settings or by your network administrator if you are on a network.
    • You will either receive an HTTP 407 error message or a request to authenticate, indicating that the URL is blocked. This will cause your browser to hang or crash.
    • If you are on a network, contact your network administrator to assist you or use one of the solutions below.
  • Known solutions
    • Continue to block the URL but return an HTTP 503 access denied message from the proxy server. This will allow Flash Player and the browser to continue operating
    • Upgrade to Internet Explorer 7.x or later versions of Internet Explorer; or
    • Delete the Registry Key at HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Macromedia\FlashPlayer\FlashPlayerVersion with a value similar (or identical) to “10.1.53.64~installVector=1.
    • Any one of the above solutions will help you solve your problem.
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