How To Pay WTI on SARS eFiling

By Devsh Jag •  Updated: 10/20/24 •  10 min read

Individuals that have a higher net worth or hold local and foreign investments need to be aware of the Withholding Tax on Interest (WTI), which was introduced by SARS in 2015. This is a type of tax that makes a person who was originally from South Africa liable for the interest of the tax paid by a foreign source. 

This process requires both parties to honour so that SARS is successfully paid the money they are owed. But what exactly is withholding tax on interest, and how do we pay it? 

Here’s what you need to know. 

What is Withholding Tax on Interest?

On the 1st of March 2015, the new Withholding Tax on Interest (WTI) ruling came into effect. This is a type of tax that is charged on interest that has been paid after the date of the ruling. 

WTI is payable by any person from a source within South Africa to or for the benefit of a foreign person. The foreign person can include individuals, companies, or trusts. The foreign person or company will be liable for the tax; however, the amount needs to be withheld by the person that is making the interest payment. 

The interest paid is taxed at the final tax rate, which is 15%, and is paid to SARS. WTI is just one of many withholding taxes applicable to South Africa. Other related taxes include: 

How To Pay WTI (Withholding Tax on Interest) on eFiling

WTI is payable to SARS via the official e-filing website only and requires the payor to complete and submit the relevant return, known as the WT002. The W002 return is a summary of all the interest payments made and taxes withheld during the specified period, usually a month. 

In order to pay WTI, you will need to be registered with SARS and have a valid Income Tax number. If you have forgotten your reference number, you can call the SARS Contact Centre or visit a SARS branch for assistance. 

Payments for WTI cannot be made at a SARS branch or Bank; therefore, you must ensure that your banking details are set up correctly on eFiling, as this is the only accepted method to make payments. 

Here is the process to access and make WTI payments:

You will be directed to the Payment Summary Screen and will notice the ‘Amount’ field reflecting the outstanding amount due, but you can change this amount if you wish. 

Next, the Payment Details screen will appear. Here’s how to complete your payment: 

Once complete, you will likely be sent an authorization request to your banking app and will need to log on to your bank account and accept/ authorize the payment.

To check that the payment was completed, you can check the payment status on eFiling. If the payment was authorized and completed successfully, the payment status would have changed to ‘Payment ‘Successful’. 

How to Activate WTI on eFiling

:

Once you’ve registered for Income Tax, you will need to activate WTI on eFiling. To do this:

Next, the Activation Screen will appear. Once on this page, you will need to:

Thereafter you should see a pop-up message appear asking you to confirm that you want to activate the tax number for WTI. 

Once you confirm the activation request, it will be validated by the system, and you will receive a message either confirming your activation or letting you know that your WTI activation is pending approval. 

How to Deactivate WTI

In the event that you need to deactivate WTI from your profile, this can be done in the following way: 

You will then see the activation screen displayed:

Once you confirm the deactivation, you should see a notice reading, “Deactivation for Withholding Tax on Interest has been successful.” 

How do I initiate a tax-type transfer on eFiling?

There are a few steps involved for those that want to transfer a taxpayer. Here’s what you need to do:

Once loaded, you should see a screen that reads “Requests for Taxpayer’s Return Types.’ You will need to: 

You should now see another message advising that the taxpayer is registered. Thereafter: 

The Taxpayer or Registered Representative will then receive a notification via SMS and email to transfer the selected tax type to the requestor and will need to approve this transfer request. 

This is done by: 

After inserting the OTP, an online Power of Attorney (POA) request will be sent to the Taxpayer or holding user. They will have to “Accept’ the request in order to proceed. 

Is tax paid the same as tax withheld?

This question can often cause some confusion, but it can be explained fairly simply. 

Your tax paid is the amount that SARS calculates that you have to pay based on your income and deductions for the year. 

To make the tax payment above, employers (or the originator of the funds) deduct an amount from your pay and send it to SARS. This is known as tax withheld. 

The amount of tax withheld may be more or less than the amount that SARS stipulate according to their calculations, and the difference between the two will either result in a refund/ rebate owed to you or a deficit that you will then owe SARS. 

What happens if you don’t pay withholding taxes?

As with any tax form, non-payment of owed tax can have major consequences.

A South African that is found guilty of this offense can lead to tax liability for the party charged and the imposition of penalties and interest on unpaid taxes. 

Fixed-amount penalties can be imposed for outstanding returns or the failure to disclose information in respect of a ‘reportable arrangement’, while percentage-based penalties will be imposed when a payment is received late. 

SARS administrative penalties can vary between 5% and 200% of the tax that was not paid or can range from R250 up to R16 000 per month for each month for up to 35 months that the non-compliance continues. 

According to the Income Tax Act, employers are required to pay withheld taxes to SARS by no later than the seventh day of the next month. Failure to do so will result in the employer becoming subject to a 10% penalty as well as interest unless a deferral arrangement is in place.  

These penalties generally fall into one of the following categories: 

How do I avoid withholding penalty?

SARS has become much more strict in recent years, levying heavy penalties for non-compliance regarding income tax payments are concerned. Individuals should therefore take every step necessary to remain compliant to avoid these steep penalties. 

Taxpayers that become aware that they are liable for payment or have made an error resulting in them becoming non-compliant should contact SARS as soon as possible to rectify the error. By doing this, you may be able to avoid penalties and additional interest charges once the correct process is completed. 

The most common mistakes to avoid by taxpayers are:

In some instances, taxpayers may be guilty of a combination of the above reasons, which can make matters worse. 

In order to avoid the repercussions of non-payment, taxpayers should be aware that they are required to declare their taxable income within 6 months of the tax year and their total estimated annual income before the end of the tax year. 

When Should withholding tax be paid?

Withholding Tax on Interest can be paid to SARS via eFiling only. 

You will need to submit the relevant document (WT002), which summarizes the total of all interest payments made and the amount of tax that was withheld during the month. 

Both the payment and the WT002 must be submitted to SARS before the end of the month following the month in which the interest was paid. 

Keep Reading

How to Recover eFiling Password

How to Recover eFiling Password

If you have forgotten your login password or need to amend or change other details, we've created this guide to help.

How to Pay SARS via Capitec EFT

How to Pay SARS via Capitec EFT

How to Pay SARS via Capitec EFT. In this section, we will discuss the various SARS payment options as well as other topics that are connected to SARS payments.

How to Submit EMP501 on SARS Efiling

How to Submit EMP501 on SARS Efiling

Submit EMP501 on SARS Efiling. This article explains how you can submit EMP501 on SARS eFiling. 

How to Fill In Pay Periods on SARS Efiling

How to Fill In Pay Periods on SARS Efiling

This article explains everything you need to know about how to fill in pay periods on SARS eFiling.

What Is SARS IT88?

What Is SARS IT88?

If you owe money for previous taxes, SARS will issue your employer a document known as the IT88. Read on to learn what SARS IT88 is.

How to Fill In Source Code 4251 on SARS Efilling?

How to Fill In Source Code 4251 on SARS Efilling?

SARS uses different codes for each specific type of tax. Read on to learn how to fill in source code 4251 on SARS eFiling.

How to Make Payment to SARS via EFT

How to Make Payment to SARS via EFT

This post will cover the procedure for paying SARS via EFT, the procedure for paying SARS via eFiling

How to Dispute SARS Efiling Assessment?

How to Dispute SARS Efiling Assessment?

This article explains everything you want to know about disputing SARS eFiling assessment. 

NOA – Notice of Appeal

NOA – Notice of Appeal

NOA – Notice of Appeal. Read on to learn different aspects of the NOA process. How Do I Submit a SARS Notice of Appeal?

What Happens if You Don’t Pay Taxes?

What Happens if You Don’t Pay Taxes?

Today we will look at some common questions around not paying tax in South Africa, and what to do for specific situations.

How to Complete a Tax Directive Application eFiling

How to Complete a Tax Directive Application eFiling

Understanding how to navigate the eFiling platform for tax directives is essential for ensuring compliance with tax laws and accurately managing tax obligations.

RAV01 – Registration, Amendment, and Verification Form

RAV01 – Registration, Amendment, and Verification Form

This article explains everything you need to know regarding RAV01 registration, amendment, and verification forms.

How Long Does SARS Take to Respond to Disputes?

How Long Does SARS Take to Respond to Disputes?

You should read on if you want to know how long it takes SARS to resolve a disagreement or disputes

How to Emigrate Tax From South Africa

How to Emigrate Tax From South Africa

How to Emigrate Tax From South Africa. Keep on reading to learn how you emigrate tax from South Africa.

How to Update My SARS Details Online

How to Update My SARS Details Online

Learn how to update SARS details online, upload supporting documents, and change sensitive information on eFiling.