Clinic business

MONEY CLINIC | Am I exempt from filing a tax return?

The exemption will not apply if you receive any other form of income.


With tax season in full swing, it’s important to make sure you’re compliant and know your status, especially if your circumstances have changed. In some cases, South African tax residents are not required to file a tax return.

“This will probably apply to normal employees whose only source of income is their salary,” says Ruan van Jaarsveld, tax manager at Hobbs Sinclair Advisory. If you are under 65, the tax threshold (i.e. the amount above which income tax becomes payable) is R87 300 pa; if you are between 65 and under 75, the tax threshold is R135,150; and for taxpayers aged 75 and over, this threshold is R151,100.

Van Jaarsveld examines the circumstances in which an individual is not required to file a tax return.

Individuals are NOT required to submit tax returns if their gross income consists solely of one or more of the following income categories:

1. Remuneration paid from a single source that does not exceed R500,000 and PAYE has been deducted;

2. Amounts received or accrued from tax exempt investments;

3. South African interest income (excluding tax exempt investments) of less than:

a. R23,800 for people aged 65 and under,

b. R34,500 for people aged 65 and over;

4. Any dividends if you were non-resident throughout the tax year.

According to Van Jaarsveld, the exemption will not apply if you receive any other form of income, such as taxable interest, rental income, business income, car or travel allowance or any other social benefit, and that you are not claiming tax deductions or reimbursements, ie travel and medical expenses, or pension contributions in addition to the pension contributions paid by your employer.

Questions may be edited for brevity and clarity.

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