SARS extends eFiling deadline for taxpayers

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The South African Revenue Service (SARS) has extended the eFiling deadline for provisional taxpayers by just over two weeks, the tax service announced.

This follows issues the revenue service faced earlier in January with the discontinuation of Adobe Flash Player.

However, SARS says that the pandemic has also played a role, with COVID-19 taking a toll on taxpayers and businesses.

SARS has encouraged taxpayers to file their taxes online to avoid the spread of the virus, putting more strain on digital services.

“The decision to extend the Filing Season was taken with due consideration of the traumatic effects being experienced by taxpayers who have lost loved ones, as well as businesses who have lost staff, during the devastating second wave of Covid-19,” SARS Commissioner Edward Kieswetter said in a statement.

New SARS eFiling deadline

The original deadline for provisional taxpayers was set for Friday, 29 January. However, SARS has extended this deadline to Monday, 15 February.

Those filing taxes online faced extra challenges in January due to the discontinuation of Adobe Flash Player.

As a result, certain SARS forms stopped working on 12 January.

The tax service has since migrated some forms to HTML 5.

To address the rest of the forms, SARS launched a standalone eFiling browser days before the original tax season deadline.

SARS continues to face criticism over its handling of Adobe Flash. Adobe announced the planned 2021 discontinuation of support for Flash in 2017.

Meanwhile, all major browsers announced plans to discontinue the plug-in by the end of December 2020.

Despite this, some eFiling forms still relied on the plugin in January.

Feature image: Memeburn via Canva

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Megan Ellis


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