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Tax on Interest only income?

Posted 19 December 2014 under Tax Questions



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I'd like to know how tax works based on this assumption:
>>
I have only one income and it's purely from interest earned off of investments (simple investments that give a fixed rate monthly so nothing funny about offshore, shares, etc.)
>>

My guess is that it's the equivalent of earning a salary (i.e. if you earned R3500 in interest monthly that you'd look up the tax rate in the current tax booklet and therefor have to pay nothing as tax appears to only be required when earning more than R5891 monthly). However if one earned R7500 in interest monthly then you would be required to pay tax of R289 per month. Also because this is interest only though and the only form of income I'm also guessing that the interest exemption does not apply (would be kinda funky if it did)?

Now lets push it up to a higher value and assume that interest earned is R30,000 per month - the tax starts to obviously get quite heavy now at R5790 per month so if we took the invested amount (lets say for example we'd invested 3 million to get our 30,000 monthly interest) and split it across two people instead of just one (both not earning an income from any other source) would I have to do anything special if I was giving half of the initial amount to someone else or can I just give it to them where they then also earn interest but only pay the tax on half of the interest earned, i.e. R15,000 at R1673 x2 = R3346 instead of the R5790 (so a tax saving of R2444)? So basically this: for me to give them that 1.5 mill would anybody care?

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TaxTimTaxTim says:
19 December 2014 at 11:01

Interest earned would still attract the investment exemption even if it is the only form of income earned so you can take that into account in your calculations.

You cannot just give away R1.5m unless to your spouse as you will attract Donations Tax on amounts over R100 000 at a rate of 20%.


Vix says:
19 December 2014 at 12:23

Thanks TaxTim!

I always wondered about the exemption so it's good to know (now just to save up 3 million). Also giving away money to your spouse sounds much worse when you say it :p


TaxTimTaxTim says:
19 December 2014 at 19:07

However the benefit is you pay no tax!


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