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How long to keep tax records available for inspection in South Africa

(Also, read: How to get a tax refund from Sars)

If you’ve ever submitted a tax return – or you should’ve, but didn’t – you must keep your tax records.

Even if the South African Revenue Service (Sars) never required you to submit a tax return (i.e. if you earned exempted income or a taxable income below the threshold), you still have to keep a record.

Failing to keep the required tax records is a crime.

Taxpayers are obliged by law to keep tax records in South Africa available for inspection by Sars.

Authorities are allowed by law to make unannounced inspections.

For how long does Sars require taxpayers to keep tax documents?

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviewed Chris Sloane, an accountant and tax expert.

Listen to the interview in the audio below (and scroll down for quotes from it).

They asked to prove a Capital Gain from 2005… it’s bizarre! You can’t keep records for that long…

Chris Sloane, accountant

My understanding is that it’s five years since assessment…

Chris Sloane, accountant

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This article first appeared on 702 : How long to keep tax records available for inspection in South Africa


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