Make sure you enter information for the correct tax year on your return (ITR12). The 2016 tax year started on March 1, 2015 and ended on February 29, 2016. Make sure you don’t inadvertently try to claim deductions that took effect on March 1 this year, or use tax rates that were introduced in this year’s Budget when checking your tax assessment or calculations. For example, you will be entitled to claim retirement fund contributions up to 27.5 percent of your taxable income only when you submit your 2017 return. If you are claiming for medical expenses that you could not recover from your medical scheme, check that the expenses were incurred during the 2016 tax year. The sooner you submit your return, the sooner you can expect to receive any refund that is due to you. The South African Revenue Service (SARS) says that, of the R15 billion that it refunded to 1.82 million taxpayers in last year’s tax season, 95 percent was paid out within 72 hours of the returns being submitted. SARS says that, last year, 95 percent of returns were assessed within three seconds and more than 99 percent within 24 hours. The date by which you must file your return depends on how you submit it and whether or not you are a provisional taxpayer.
◆ If you submit your return by post or drop it off at a SARS branch, irrespective of whether you are or are not a provisional taxpayer, the deadline is Friday, September 23;
◆ If you file your return electronically at a SARS branch, irrespective of whether or not you are a provisional taxpayer, the deadline is Friday, November 25;
◆ If you are not a provisional taxpayer and you file your return via eFiling, the due date is Friday, November 25; and
◆ If you are a provisional taxpayer and you file your return via eFiling, you must file by Tuesday, January 31. You might not have to submit a tax return even if you earned an income. You do not have to submit a return if your total (before-tax) salary for the tax year was less than R350 000 and ◆ You received a salary from