SARS which stands for the South African Revenue Service is the authority responsible for collecting the nation’s tax.
SARS was established under the South African Revenue Service Act 34 of 1997 as an autonomous agency.
It administers the South African tax system and customs service.
The outcomes of the South African Revenue Service – SARS are increased:
- customs and excise compliance
- tax compliance
- ease and fairness of doing business with SARS
- cost-effectiveness and Internal Efficiencies
- public trust and credibility.
The agency is aware of the role taxation plays in building a nation. Therefore considers the tax system as the nation’s asset.
The agency is guided by the code of conduct and the principle of SARS in carrying out their work.
The values include accountability, fairness, honesty, integrity, respect, transparency, and trust.
SARS also encourages compliance with tax and customs laws. This will ensure that every taxpayer pays a fair share.
They carry it out in a manner that doesn’t hinder trade, economic growth, and development.
This they achieve by not imposing an excessive burden on taxpayers, traders and businesses.
To achieve compliance most efficiently and cost-effectively.
The agency’s approach to promoting compliance is based on three (3) principles including to:
- make taxpayers aware of their obligations,
- make it easy to meet them.
- act against those who break the law.
To reach SARS representatives using your cellphone, dial the 0800 00 SARS line.
Tel: 0800 00 7277 for local callers and +27 11 602 2093 for international callers.
The South African Revenue Service (SARS) is available on weekdays from 08:00 – 16:30 and on Wednesdays from 9:00 – 16:30.
Register for tax
To register for tax, you may choose any of these methods.
1. Employer via SARS eFiling
With the SARS eFilling, employers can submit employee’s income tax registration to SARS.
This registration function allows employers to submit employee income tax registrations to SARS.
2. SARS Branch
You may walk to the nearest SARS Branch to register for Personal Income Tax.
Ensure you go along with the necessary supporting documents as proof of your identity.
Individuals who want to register as taxpayers or update their info need the following documents as proof of your identity. The documents are required for changing any of the following information.
- First name
- Date of birth
- Identity or passport number
- Passport country or marital status.
Here are the documents required during registration for tax.
1. Certified or uncertified copy of a valid identity document, driving license, passport, temporary identity document, asylum seekers certificate or permit together with the original identification.
2. A date is not required on the certification stamp; as the original ID is required when visiting a branch.
3. If you are a minor, a certified or uncertified copy of your birth certificate together with a copy of the one of the parent’s/guardian’s identity document.
If there is no surviving parent, the death certificate of one parent must be provided by the appointed guardian.
4. If you are represented by a legal guardian, a letter confirming legal guardianship or court order.
5. Note that before 1 November 2016 this was named ‘Unabridged Birth Certificate’.
6. If you are represented by a Tax Practitioner/Representative, a copy of your ID is required.
7. Where the scanned copy is unclear, the branch should complete the ‘Verification of ID Form’.
8. Please note the Tax Practitioner will not be allowed to change the identity number of the individual.
9. Where you do not have the updated ID, but a valid marriage certificate – the change may be made.
If only a handwritten marriage certificate is available, the change will be allowed – but the new ID must also be presented.
10. Where only a new ID is presented without a marriage certificate or ‘old’ ID, the marriage certificate is required.
11. For changes of surname due to cultural belief, you will need Original and a copy of a new ID and Letter from Home Affairs.
Ensure you confirm the requirements here before visiting the visit your nearest SARS branch.