The South African Revenue Service (SARS) distributed notification letters to 22 000 taxpayers to advise them of discrepancies on the declaration of interest income.
The notification is part of SARS efforts to reduce the tax gap and to broaden the tax base. The exercise involved SARS comparing the interest income declared to it by individual taxpayers, and the declarations of interest income by the banks, fund management companies, medical aid societies and so on.
SARS discovered that substantial amounts of interest income that should have been declared to it were not. For example, of the 577 000 records received from the external agents, over 200 000 showed a positive discrepancy between the tax declarations and the external agents' data.
From the feedback we have received from the taxpayers we have been able to deduce that the data is inconsistent. SARS is actively addressing the matter.
SARS is calling on taxpayers who may have identified inconsistencies in the notification letters to please call our call centre number (021) 413 5000.
ISSUED BY THE COMMISSIONER FOR THE SOUTH AFRICAN REVENUE SERVICE