How to Dispute SARS Efiling Assessment?

By Trev Gami •  Updated: 12/19/24 •  5 min read

If you are not happy with the assessment of your tax declaration or return, you are entitled to lodge a dispute. To challenge SARS decision, you must follow a specific process within 30 days from the day the assessment is issued. This article explains everything you want to know about disputing SARS eFiling assessment. 

How Do I Dispute SARS Efiling Assessment?

You can submit your dispute to SARS using the appropriate form via eFiling or visit your local branch office. When using the eFiling option, you must first log in to your account. Select “User”, then “Tax Type,” and choose “Manage Tax Types.” Follow the prompts and complete the appropriate form to file your dispute. 

Some disputes about specific SARS decisions should be lodged manually, especially if the taxpayer feels the decisions are biased. For instance, declined applications for distributing waivers under section 18A and rejected applications for exemption can lead to disputes among taxpayers.

If any of the above decisions aggrieves you, you should file the dispute manually. The dispute form you will use in this case is the Notice of Objection (ADR1). You can submit the form via email at contactus@sars.gov.za. Alternatively, you can submit the form at your nearest SARS branch. However, if you want to submit the form physically, you must book an appointment first. Make sure you file your dispute within 30 business days of getting the SARS eFiling assessment.

If you disagree with the outcome of an objection, you can appeal. Be sure to file your appeal using the prescribed form within 30 business days from the day your objection was rejected. Remember you cannot submit the ADR1 electronically via eFiling. 

How Do I Reject SARS Auto Assessment?

If you are unsatisfied with the SARS auto assessment, you should obtain and complete a tax return via eFiling within 40 working days from the day you received the assessment. This new provision came into effect on 1 July 2022. However, if third-party data was used and you are not happy with it, you can request it to be corrected before obtaining another tax return.

If you are not happy with the outcome of the auto-assessment and you can request more time to file the return. However, try to complete the tax return within 40 business days from the date you received your assessment. You can still get an extension of 21 business days to complete your tax return after the lapse of the initial 40 working days if you have reasonable grounds.

When you are convinced that the auto assessment is incorrect, you will need to access and complete your tax return and file it within 40 days. If you need more time, you can apply for an extension via SARS MobiApp or eFiling before the expiry of the 40 days. Late filing of your tax return will attract administrative penalties. 

If you disagree with the auto assessment, you can access your tax return on the eFiling site. Once you receive the auto assessment from SARS, you should follow the steps below to reject it. 

When a taxpayer submits a return indicating that they disagree with SARS auto assessment, SARS will process the return. It also provides a revised assessment that can affect the taxpayer’s outcome. 

For example, you can get an increased, reduced refund, or due payment to SARS. If you agree with the revised assessment, take no action, but if you still disagree, you can file an appeal. If you are offered a refund, it will be paid into your account within 72 hours. 

How Do I File a Dispute on Efiling?

To file a dispute, follow the steps below:

You will see the following options.

To request a new dispute, you should click “New” under “Request for Reason” or “Disputes.” Choose the type of dispute you want to pursue. 

What Does Dispute Mean on SARS?

A dispute is a disagreement between the taxpayer and SARS over the tax return decision or assessment taken by SARS. If you are aggrieved by the decision made by SARS, you can dispute or appeal another revised assessment after your initial objection. 

Most common disputes involve the following:

You have a right to file a notice of objection or notice of appeal if you have a dispute. The dispute-resolving process involves the request for reasons or suspension of payment. 

If you are not happy about the outcome of the SARS eFiling assessment, you have the right to dispute it. You can object to the decision via the eFiling option or visit your nearest SARS branch office to submit your rejection form. You also have the right to appeal the decision from the dispute you filed. Ensure you abide by the statute of limitations when you file your dispute to avoid penalties.  

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