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A Quick Guide to South African Company Tax Returns

Nicole on 19 June 2024
A Quick Guide to South African Company Tax Returns

Congrats on starting your new business!

We know you haven’t been operating for that long yet, and this is probably your first time doing your business tax returns – which can be scary (we’ve all been there, don’t worry!)

You’re trying to build your dream from the ground up, and now you’ve got to worry about accidentally committing tax fraud – not fun.

But don’t worry, we’re here to help you figure it all out and answer your questions, so you have one less thing to worry about.

“So… what is tax filing anyway?”

Filing your taxes tells the South African Revenue Service (SARS) about your business's income (money earned from sales, services or investments) and expenses (money spent to run your business) throughout the year.

“When do I need to file my taxes?”

Unlike regular individuals or trusts, companies have a special way of doing taxes and you’ll actually need to file with SARS 3 times a year. Which sounds crazy, but we’re here to walk you through it.

Here’s how it works:

Provisional Tax Payments (x2): You’ll make two provisional tax payments throughout the year. These are based on your expected profits.

  • 1st Provisional Return: Due 6 months after your company's financial year-end.
  • 2nd Provisional Return: Due at the end of your company's financial year.

Then you’ll also need to file your company Income Tax Return (ITR14).

This is your official tax return that summarizes your entire year's income and expenses and is due within 12 months of your company's financial year-end.

“How do I know when my financial year end is?”

When registering your company, one of the steps is to select a financial year-end. Most companies opt for February.

Your financial year-end is listed on your (Pty) Ltd's MOI certificate, and you can confirm this in the profile section of your Govchain account.

“What documents do I need?”

Once tax season officially kicks off, you’ll need to submit some documents as records of your business income and expenses for the year.

These can be:

  • Financial statements
  • Balance sheets


  • Bank statements

“I’m scared of messing up”

When you do something new (like filing taxes for the first time), it’s easy to make mistakes – which is completely normal, but it’s nice to be able to skip those flops.

Here are a few of the most common mistakes other owners make that you can avoid:

1. Don’t leave out ANY income

Declare ALL your business income from sales, services, and investments to avoid penalties.

2. Only claim expenses you actually used only for your business

This could be stuff like rent, office supplies, marketing costs, and some travel. You should keep your receipts and invoices as proof, otherwise it won’t count.

3. Before submitting, double-triple-check your information

Make sure you don't leave anything out or make any errors.

4. It is super important that you use the right forms for your business type

Choosing the wrong form can make the process take wayyy longer, which isn’t something you want to happen.

The specific forms you’ll need for your company are the ITA34 and IRP6 ones.

5. Make sure you're registered for Value Added Tax (VAT)

(If your annual taxable income is more than R1 million)

“How can I make it easier?”

Filing company tax returns can be confusing.

That's why Govchain is here to help and make it simple. Here’s how it works:

  1. Quick Online Application: Fill out our easy online application in minutes – no complicated forms!
  2. Clear Fee upfront: We calculate your fee right away, so no hidden costs.
  3. Easy Payment Options: Choose how you want to pay – credit card, EFT, or cash deposit at an ATM.
  4. Confirmation Email: Once your payment is processed, you'll get a confirmation email with a certificate for your records.

Got Questions? We've Got Answers!

Our friendly support team is always happy to help!

So feel free to reach out to us with any questions you may have about company tax returns or filing with Govchain.