CONTINUEThis site uses cookies. By continuing to browse this site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Find out more.
  1. Front Page
  2. News By Topic
  3. SARS Issues Urgent Tax Scam Warning

SARS Issues Urgent Tax Scam Warning

by Robert Lee, Tax-News.com, London

01 September 2006


The South African Revenue Service (SARS) has issued an urgent warning to business and individual taxpayers about a scam which attempts to dupe victims into believing they have been mistakenly paid a tax refund by the tax department.

The most common approach of the scam according to SARS is a fraudulent letter faxed to a taxpayer – mostly a registered business – that informs them that a tax refund was mistakenly paid into their bank account. In some instances taxpayers are contacted by telephone or post.

The letter urges the taxpayer to deduct bank charges and pay the balance into a bank account which supposedly belongs to SARS. The amounts range anything from R50,000 to R1 million (US$7,000 to US$140,000).

"SARS wants to caution taxpayers not to pay any money into such accounts after receiving letters. It is not part of SARS’ procedure to issue letters of this nature that claim that a refund was mistakenly been issued to a taxpayer," the tax department stated in its alert.

"It must be emphasised that, in the unlikely event that a refund is mistakenly issued by SARS, SARS has the procedures in place to withdraw the money without involving taxpayers or demanding from them to transfer money," the alert explained.

The following guidelines have been issued by SARS to help those who have received letters from suspected fraudsters:

  • Taxpayers must check their accounts to see if the funds allegedly paid into their accounts originated from a cheque deposit;
  • In many instances the money would be reflected, however the account holder must verify with their bank the source of the deposit and whether or not the account number into which the deposit is asked to be made is a SARS account;
  • Money paid through a cheque deposit may appear in the bank account but the cheque in most cases is a fraudulent cheque;
  • Communication by the suspected fraudsters normally contains only cellphone numbers as contact details that the taxpayer can use;
  • All authentic SARS correspondence has landline numbers.


To see today's news, click here.

 















Tax-News Reviews

Cyprus Review

A review and forecast of Cyprus's international business, legal and investment climate.

Visit Cyprus Review »

Malta Review

A review and forecast of Malta's international business, legal and investment climate.

Visit Malta Review »

Jersey Review

A review and forecast of Jersey's international business, legal and investment climate.

Visit Jersey Review »

Budget Review

A review of the latest budget news and government financial statements from around the world.

Visit Budget Review »



Stay Updated

Please enter your email address to join the Tax-News.com mailing list. View previous newsletters.

By subscribing to our newsletter service, you agree to our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.


To manage your mailing list preferences, please click here »