The audit report – Changes are coming…
August 3, 2015
Personeelfunksie: 30 Julie 2015
September 2, 2015

SARS: The Importance of supporting documentation

This article relates in part to an article in our May Newsletter titled “The importance of a valid VAT invoice”.

When the South African Revenue Service (SARS) conducts an audit/review for Value Added Tax (VAT) or Income Tax purposes, they normally request supporting documentation and allow the taxpayer 21 days[1] in which to submit such documentation. In other words, the taxpayer has three weeks after the notification of an audit/review to submit the relevant supporting documentation to SARS.

Considering the above we would encourage all clients/taxpayers to pay special attention to any requests received from SARS regarding supporting documentation.

Furthermore, please note that while we are preparing to finalise your Income Tax or VAT return, one of our staff members may contact you in order to request supporting documentation that is relevant for SARS.  The reason for this is to enable us to ascertain whether a specific Income Tax or VAT claim is in fact a valid one and so ensure that we are prepared, should SARS decide to review/audit the particular return.

Should a taxpayer submit an Income Tax or VAT claim of any kind to SARS without being able to corroborate such claim with the relevant supporting documentation, SARS will most likely impose significant penalties and interest. There are no guarantees that these charges can be waived. In the unlikely event that such penalties and interest levied are waived, the costs incurred in order to achieve a successful outcome could be significant.

Please contact Adrian De Geus at or Jaco van Straaten at or 021 840 1600 should you require further information about the requirements for Valid Supporting Documents.

[1] In terms of the Tax Administration Act, ‘days’ means business days, but it would seem that in practice SARS refers to calendar days.

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