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How to lodge an objection with SARS - it can save you money

by , 20 August 2015
Has SARS just carried out an assessment on your company? Do you have to pay more tax than you thought you had to? Why not object to your assessment?

You could end up paying less tax. Let's see what you must do to lodge your objection.

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Has SARS taken ages to respond to your objection?
 
Did you know SARS must respond to your objection in 60 days?
 
And if it doesn't, the Tax Administration Act gives you a powerful weapon you can legally use to win your case.
 
Here's everything you need to know about objecting and appealing a SARS assessment

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How to lodge an objection in 4 easy steps
 
Step #1
Fill in the Notice of Objection form on your eFiling profile. 
 
Step #2
Complete it, sign it and attach supporting documentation and if necessary a detailed letter of what you're objecting to. Your objection must clearly state the legal grounds on which you're objecting. Referring to specific sections of the Income Tax Act or case law will help your objection a great deal (see example letter here).
 
On the form, you must indicate the figure on your assessment you want to dispute. You must also tell SARS what you think the figure should be and why.
 
You must provide SARS with the following three items:
  1. The source code (as on your assessment or annual income tax return);
  2. The amount as assessed;
  3. The amount that you believe is correct;
If you submit supporting documentation, include anything that'll help prove why you're right and why SARS was wrong. This could be invoices to prove expenses, a letter detailing why you think SARS is wrong, extracts from the Income Tax Act, and anything else that could help you.

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Have you received a nasty assessment from SARS?
 
Did SARS:
  • Request the specific information it wanted from you for the audit;
  • Keep you informed of the progress of the audit; and
  • Notify you within 21 business days of its findings before it raised the assessment?
I suspect it didn't! And now it's assessed you and you don't agree.
 
Here's what you should do to object against SARS' assessment.

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Step #3
Make copies.
 
Step #4
Take it to any SARS branch and submit. Make sure you get the copies stamped and keep them as proof if SARS ever says it didn't get your docs.
 
You must lodge your objection within 30 business days from the date of assessment.
 
P.S. It's important to note that if you do object you still have to pay SARS what's due on your assessment. If you don't you'll accumulate interest on the amount you owe. Unless you request for a payment suspension. Here's how you can apply for it and everything you need to know when you don't agree with SARS' assessments.
 

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