fhbc_junie_nuusbrief_01_17Tax Update:  Filing season postponed and other tax matters

As a relief measure, during the Covid-19 pandemic, the South African Revenue Service (hereafter SARS) has announced that the tax filing season has been postponed to the 1st of September 2020, and is not opening on the 1st of July 2020.

Have a look at the following summary regarding the filing seasons for individuals and companies:

Individuals The individual income tax return filing dates are as follows:

  • Taxpayers who file online:
    1 September to 16 November 2020
  • Taxpayers who cannot file electronically can do so at a SARS branch by appointment:
    1 September to 22 October 2020
  • Provisional taxpayers who file online:
    1 September 2020 to 31 January 2021

(including close corporations, co-operatives and body corporates)
Companies and Close Corporations are required to submit their tax returns (ITR14) within 12 months from the date on which their financial year ends.

Provisional Tax

Companies subject to provisional tax (IRP6’s) must submit their provisional tax returns within

  • 6 months after year-end (regarding the 1st period),
  • At financial year-end (regarding the 2nd period) and
  • Six months after financial year-end (regarding the 3rd period).
Auto-assessments SARS will be issuing a significant number of auto-assessments for qualifying returns.

The suitability of the return

To qualify for auto-assessment is dependent on the data received from employers, financial institutions, medical schemes, retirement annuity fund administrators and other third-party data providers.

The auto-assessment process will happen in August 2020

SARS will send an SMS if a taxpayer has been selected for auto-assessment.

If a taxpayer accepts their auto-assessment

Any under or overpayment of tax will be processed as normal.

If taxpayers prefer to submit their return

They may file their return on eFiling or the SARS MobiApp from 1 September 2020.


Some noteworthy updates

  1. Visiting a SARS branch:Although most SARS branches are open, they are implementing a new normal and is not operating as usual.  It is advised that you only visit a branch if it is absolutely necessary and if you have made an appointment.
  2. Over-deducted PAYE-contributions:  SARS will be performing tax calculations on the IRP5/IT3(a) certificates from 2020 assessments  In the case where an employer has over-deducted PAYE and where eFiling doesn’t seem to allow the employer to submit their EMP501 – a letter will be issued by SARS, accompanied by a file containing a list of the certificates that have failed the SARS calculation.
  3. Registering for VAT during lockdown As a result of COVID-19, you are not obliged to visit a branch for an interview, as the interview step was removed from the VAT registration process, with effect from 3 April 2020.

    If you are stuck in limbo, it is recommended that you start the entire process on eFiling and the system should immediately issue the number.

  4. No postponement of VAT payments or the filing of VAT returns  Remember that the period for VAT payments and VAT returns has remained unchanged.  Taxpayers who will not be able to make its VAT payments must make alternative arrangements with SARS – as there isn’t an automatic payment holiday or postponement in this regard.

For more in-depth details in this regard, please visit the SARS website or contact our Tax Compliance Department (by sending an email with your query to for assistance.

Please refer to the below useful SARS links: 

Source Reference:

Filing season 2020 for Individuals:

SAIT Weekly Letter: Weekly tax practice highlights – week: 25 May – 31 May 2020.