Need help with your taxes?

Posted on Monday, August 17, 2015

While we sometimes complain about the taxes we pay the reality is that our monthly contributions are used to fund much-needed social services like welfare, healthcare, transport and education. With tax deadlines looming we thought that we would pull together a list of FAQs covering the nuts and bolts of submitting your income tax returns.* And remember that if you are a 1st for Women policyholder you can contact Tax Assist if you have any queries about submitting your income tax return.  

What are this year's deadlines for submitting my income tax returns?
If you submit your tax returns manually at a SARS branch the deadline is 27 September 2013. If you submit them electronically via eFiling your deadline is 22 November 2013.

How can I submit my income tax return?
You can submit your return in one of four ways:

  1. Electronically via eFiling at or You can also use the SARS eFiling app, available for tablets and smartphones, to submit your return. Visit the SARS website to find out more about device compatibility and how to download the app

  2. At a SARS branch where an agent will help you to submit your return electronically. Tip: contact the SARS call centre on  0800 00 7277 and enquire about your branch's opening hours and expect long queues during filing season

  3. By making use of the services of a tax practictioner

  4. By completing your return manually and dropping it off at a SARS branch. Contact the SARS call centre and they will post you a return. Tip: don't forget to ask for a proof of submission when you hand in your return

What documents do I need to submit my return?
You will need the following documents to submit your income tax return:

  • Your IRP5 certificate from your employer

  • Your banking details

  • A travel logbook (if you receive a travel allowance)

  • If you have a medical aid: a tax certificate from your medical aid as well as details of any medical expenses you paid in the last tax year that were not submitted to your medical aid

  • If you do not have a medical aid: detail of any medical expenses paid in the last tax year

  • Retirement annuity tax certificates

  • Income protection policy tax certificate

  • Proof of donations to registered charites

Why do I need to submit medical aid, retirement annuity tax certificates etc.?
The following items are all considered tax deductible:

  • Medical aid premiums

  • Medical expenses not paid by your medical aid

  • Contributions to your retirement annuity policy

  • Contributions to an income protection policy

  • Donations to registered charities

Tax deductible means that these items are deducted from your total taxable income, thereby reducing the amount of income tax you need to pay. Because your employer has already paid your tax, you will receive a tax refund from SARS if applicable.  

How much will I pay a consultant to submit my return?
The amount a tax practitioner charges you will depend on a number of factors but you can expect to pay a minimum of around R400.

What is Tax Assist from 1st for Women?
As a 1st for Women policyholder you qualify for a number of great medical, travel and home and lifestyle benefits at no extra charge. One of these benefits is Tax Assist, a telephonic advice and support service for all your tax and finance-related queries. If you have any questions about your income tax or any other issues relating to your finances contact one of our experts today!  

*Note: this article deals with tax returns for non-provisional taxpayers. Non-provisional taxpayers are those who earn an income from one or more employer. Provisional taxpayers form a much smaller segment of the tax base and are those individuals with other forms of income like investment income, income from business activities, rental income, royalties income or directors of companies.

Source: South African Revenue Services

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