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Can SARS reject your input tax claim because you photocopied the tax invoice?

by , 15 October 2014
You know you need a valid tax invoice to claim your input tax back from SARS. But SARS has clear rules about what it allows when it comes to your tax invoice and what it doesn't.

For one, SARS is very clear about what details need to appear on your tax invoice. But vendors still experience difficulties because of conflicting information they get from various SARS offices about what format of tax invoice it will accept.

One of the most confusing points is whether SARS will reject an input tax claim because of a photocopied tax invoice or not.

If you want the answer to this question, read on and find out...


SARS won't reject a photocopied tax invoice as long as it meets this requirement 

If you lose or misplace your original tax invoice, your supplier can give you a photocopy of the original. But you must ask your supplier to mark it clearly as 'copy'! It must fulfill this requirement for SARS to accept it.
But what about a faxed copy of your tax invoice?
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SARS treats faxed tax invoices the same way it treats photocopied ones

Your supplier can also fax you a copy of your tax invoice, but it must be on plain paper! 
SARS won't accept a faxed invoice that's on fax paper as opposed to normal paper because it fades and it can't guarantee the integrity of the information. 
Alternatively, your supplier can also email you a copy with the word 'copy' printed on it.
So if you lose your tax invoice, SARS will accept a photocopied, faxed or emailed version as long as it meets these requirements.
For more information on claiming input tax, check out Input Tax 101.

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