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How to complete your Income Tax Return by eFiling

by , 12 December 2013
Did you file your 2013 tax returns at your SARS branch? If so, that doesn't have to be case next year. You can use e-Filing, it's much simpler and you don't have to wait in long lines. Here's how to complete your Income Tax Return on eFiling.

If you're one of the people who still go to a SARS branch to file tax returns, it's time to change your ways. Use SARS' eFiling platform instead!

SARS eFiling is a free, electronic service that allows individual taxpayers, tax practitioners and businesses to submit tax returns, make payments and interact with SARS in a secure online environment.

With eFiling, your options are endless. You can choose to complete and submit your Income Tax Return (ITR12) via your PC, laptop, mobile phone (if it has web browsing capabilities) or your tablet (Android and Apple).

You just have to register for eFiling, then log on to your eFiling profile via one of these devices, have your supporting documents on hand and you'll be prompted to the following steps.

Follow these steps to complete your Income Tax Return on eFiling

SARS gives you the ten steps you must f0llow when completing your Income Tax Return on eFiling:

Step 1: Register at www.sarsefiling.co.za if you haven't already done so. If you're already registered for eFiling, simply login with your eFiling username and password.

Step 2: Once you've successfully registered or logged on, you'll find your Income Tax Return (ITR12) already populated with your personal information.

Step 3: You can then complete the questionnaire on the first page of the ITR12. This which will create all the fields you need to complete your return.

Step 4: The second page is for your personal details. Check the pre-populated information and make changes where necessary.

Make sure you complete or verify all mandatory and relevant fields. One of these is banking details.

Remember, SARS can't pay a refund (if applicable) if it has incorrect banking details.

Step 5: The third page has information about your salary and tax deductions. These fields should already be filled in and you just need to check if they're correct. Your medical scheme contributions may be reflected here.

Step 6: Declare your investment income. If you made any local or foreign taxable gains or losses, fill in the taxable capital gains you made. Declare any other income you earned. If you earned business or professional income or even rental income, you need to fill in the 'Local business, trade and professional income' section.

Step 7: Record your medical scheme contributions paid from your own bank account or any other medical expenses that you didn't recover from a medical scheme. Declare your retirement annuity and income protection payments. Also claim your work-related travel expenses against your travel allowance.

Step 8: Once you've completed your tax return, click 'Save Return'. You can use and SARS' online tax calculator if you want to get an idea of what your assessment outcome could be.

Step 9: When you're ready to submit the return to SARS, just click on the 'File Return' button. If something is incorrect or incomplete, eFiling will prompt you to correct it.

Step 10: You'll receive your Notice of Assessment (ITA34) within 48 hours on your eFiling profile, assuming you completed your return correctly and honestly. The notice will indicate what you owe SARS or what SARS owes you or if you have been selected for audit.

It's that easy. There's really no need to put up with long lines next year when you file your returns. eFiling is a simple and secure way of interacting with SARS from the comfort and convenience of your home or office.

You can submit your returns, view your tax status and make payments to SARS electronically 24 hours a day. It doesn't get better than that.

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