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Latest Posts in TaxTim's Blog

How to claim medical aid costs for a family member




At TaxTim we receive many questions from taxpayers who pay medical aid for dependent family members and who want to know if they can claim for this in their tax return.

When paying medical aid contributions for a ‘financial dependent’ the medical scheme fees tax credit applies in respect of fees paid by the person to a medical scheme.  This means that the person who is paying the medical aid will receive the medical tax credits, and not the dependent/member of the medical aid. 

Who is a ‘dependent’?...

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Some common (and sometimes forgotten) tax deductions




Too often, taxpayers rush when completing their tax return, and then they miss out on some expenses they are eligible to claim. Don’t overpay tax by overlooking these seven common tax breaks.

Contributions towards a Retirement Annuity

Your contributions towards retirement funds are deductible for tax up to a limit of 27,5% of the greater of your taxable income or remuneration (to a maximum of R350,000 per year).  This limit applies to the total contributions you make to any Pension, Provident or Retirement Annuity (RA) fund during the year...

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Why is SARS requesting my supporting documents again?




TaxTim is seeing cases where taxpayers who had already submitted their documents in early July to SARS are, around ten days to two weeks later, receiving a further two letters from SARS requesting documents again. The one letter is the generic letter with the long list of documents, which was originally issued, while the second, contains a more specific request relating to the taxpayer’s tax return. 

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What should I do if I have no assessment from SARS after having filed a return?



Usually SARS issued an immediate assessment, however sometimes they do need to do a further manual check on their side. Often the reason for this is one of the following:

  • They are missing an IRP5/IT3a due to you having transferred a lumpsum between any retirement funds. For example if you changed jobs during the year or withdrew your lumpsum from a Pension/Provident or Retirement Annuity Fund then you should have been issued an IRP5/IT3a;

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    Top questions on Commission Earners




    Our helpdesk receives hundreds of questions from commission earners about how their tax is calculated. Many are also confused about which expenses they can claim.  Hopefully our FAQ will help other taxpayers who might be puzzling over the same issues.

    1. I have a salary and earn a small commission; can I claim for my travel to and from work every day? (The commission is based on the sales that my team makes telephonically per month).

    Should the commiss...

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    Clarifying the tax return threshold set by SARS




    You may have seen the latest announcement by the SARS commissioner to increase the qualifying threshold for certain taxpayers to submit a tax return from R350 000 to R500 000.

    However as with all previous years, this only applies to certain taxpayers and so it is very important to check if you are one of these.

    The threshold applies to you only if you meet ALL of the criteria below:

    • You have worked for a full 12 months for ONE employer only and received an IRP5;...


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    Top Questions on tax seasons




    By now you would have seen the latest announcement by the SARS commissioner to increase the qualifying threshold for certain taxpayers

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    How to lodge a complaint with SARS




    There are times when the call centre agent from SARS is unable to resolve your issue and you need to reach out to a more senior person at SARS.

    You can request to speak to a team leader / operations manager or the branch / call centre manager and they should be able to assist you. Always remember to note down the case number for your call. If however, you're not satisfied with the outcome of the issue, you can lodge a formal complaint with an agent at a SARS branch or on eFiling (if y...

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    Wear and Tear (Depreciation) Top Questions




    This week we zoom into Wear and Tear also commonly known as Depreciation. Below we've covered some of the top questions we've received from our Helpdesk. Take a quick read through our Q&As and see how your pressing depreciation questions can potentially be solved. 

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    Top Questions on IRP5s




    It’s that time of the year again and employers are issuing their employees IRP5s for the tax year. An IRP5 is a tax certificate which shows the total employment income that you earned for the tax year, the total employment related deductions that were taken from your income and paid over to either a retirement fund (pension, provident or retirement annuity fund) or a medical aid and the total tax  (PAYE, UIF and SDL) that you paid...

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    Tax Treatment for Uber Drivers




    If you are an Uber driver, you use your own vehicle/s to generate your income and you determine your own working hours, you will be treated as being self-employed  (i.e. an independent contractor) for tax purposes.

    Since you do not earn a salary, you should be registered as a provisional taxpayer with SARS.

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    A basic overview of the Balance Sheet and Income Statement




    From our numerous interactions with small business owners, it seems that many draw up the company’s financial statements by themselves, without engaging the services of a professional. Many don’t use accounting software but opt for a simple excel spreadsheet instead. Although this is cost-effective, it can be a daunting task, particularly for those with a sketchy (or non-existent) accounting background.

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    Capital Gains Tax (CGT) Top Questions




    Below we take a look at Capital Gains Tax, particularly relating to the primary residence exclusion. What we’ve covered are some of the most pressing questions asked by our users on our help-desk. Take a few minutes to read the Q&As. Hopefully what has been unpacked in these Q&As will benefit and assist you with any uncertainties you might have experienced regarding this topic.

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    Tax and winnings




    It's always wonderful to win a prize or a competition – however, many people don’t realise there may be tax consequences attached.

    This week we thought it would be helpful to remind you what to look out for, should you be the lucky recipient of one of the below:

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    SARS and medical disability




    We receive many relevant questions from our users about what they can claim as a tax deduction if they or one of their dependants suffers from a disability. This week, we will focus on this issue and hopefully help other taxpayers out there who may have the same questions.

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    Retirement Funds




    This week we received some questions from our users on retirement fund contributions and the laws that govern it. We hope that this helps you as you start gathering your documents for the new tax season.

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    Rental Property: Top Weekly Questions




    If you own a rental property, then this week’s top questions are specifically for you! Read on to find out more.

    1. We paid off our home loan 5 years ago - nil balance due. However, we will have the loan available to borrow from as the term of the loan is not complete (we still have 90 months left).

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    Top 5 Weekly Tax Questions



    Read on to see this week’s top five burning questions received to our Helpdesk this past week.  Hopefully this helps you too as we once again shed light on some common tax issues.

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    1 March 2020: Expats alert, tax changes are coming your way!




    In 2017, National Treasury announced that there would be changes to the Foreign Employment income Exemption. These changes were intended to target those South Africans working overseas on expat contracts, who had not formally emigrated and were intending to return ‘home’ to SA at a later stage. The proposed amendments would have seen South Africans working overseas in lo...

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    Tax Return, Rebate and Refund Explained




    When it comes to tax jargon, most people prefer to bury their heads in the sand instead of trying to understand all the confusing terms that tax practitioners use. Taxpayers just want to do their tax quickly and easily, and if they’re due - receive some money back from SARS. A lot of confusion surrounds the process, but by understanding three simple terms you can make tax season a little bit easier.

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    Budget 2019: What did the Minister deliver?




    Mr Minister, you did a fine balancing act on this year’s budget; short-term pain for long-term gain.

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    Latest Top 5 weekly round up



    Once again we bring you our top five most-asked questions we’ve received to our Helpdesk this past week. Hopefully this may help others who have been puzzling over the same issues.

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    Budget 2019: TaxTim’s predictions




    Budget 2019: TaxTim’s predictions

    Finance Minister Tito Mboweni will be in the spotlight next week when he delivers his maiden budget speech on Wednesday, 20 February to the nation. 

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    SARS are sending me SMSs demanding payment but I have raised a dispute - what must I do?




    We have been contacted by many concerned taxpayers who have received SMS’s from SARS demanding urgent settlement of their tax debt in order to avoid legal action.

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    S12J VCC Tax Incentive



     

     
    Guest Blogger: Albertus Marais Director of AJM tax consultants and an independent director of 12Cape Ltd, a registered VCC.

    Read more →
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