SARS efiling and easyfile employer 101 - STATEMENT OF ACCOUNT, CREATING AND SUBMITTING TAX CERTIFICATES
You have a small business and have been co-erced into the SARS efiling and easyfile-Employer system and find it difficult to find your way around. You decide to abandon trying to figure it out and will do it manually but one look at the queue at the local SARS office makes you come back home and try harder. This article explains some things that I had trouble finding out how to do:
1. efiling: Where to find the Statement of account (EMPSA) and settle outstanding amounts.
2. easyfile-employer: Create IRP5 and IT3(a) certificates and complete the EMP501 reconciliation
Some things I found less than obvious.
1) You get an email to the effect of "A statement of account (EMPSA) has been issued. Navigate to your efiling work page to access this account". OK - so where or what is the efiling work page? Why can't they just tell you in the email or in the help file? It took a call to SARS and a long wait to find out. In efiling select Returns History> Employees Tax (EMP201) and Open any return. That is what is called a "Work Page" and if a Statement of Account (EMPSA) has been issued it will be shown there.
This EMPSA might indicate some payments due by you (typically penalties and interest for late payments). You would like to settle these outstanding amounts, but how do you go about it? You would have thought they would have explained that in the small print on the last page of the EMPSA but they don't. Here's how: You need to allocate any amounts due to the specific period for which they are due (you cannot just pay the "Cumulative Balance" at the bottom of the EMPSA. Select Additional Payments>Create Additional Payments. In the "Tax Type" box select PAYE (there is no option for SDL or UIF, so you must just bundle PAYE, SDL and UIF together under PAYE). Under payment reference number type the relevant "Transaction Reference" as shown on the EMPSA. It is a long number that looks something like 7530750780LE0000118 (the first portion is your business registration number).
2. easyfile-employer. One thing I found less than obvious: I managed to CREATE an IRP5 (Employee Admin>View/Edit Employees>[select company]>[view an employee] > Add Certificate) but could not find how to get the status changed from "CREATED" to "SUBMITTED". A phone call was required to find out that the "SUBMISSION" process forms part of the EMP501 declaration process. This makes sense, but is less than obvious if come from the old book based tax certificate system. After you have created certificates for your employees you need to select Reconciliation>Declaration. On this page select your company and the period and the page will be populated with information already on the system. Here any IRP5 and IT3 certificates that you have created for this period will be shown. In my case I made UIF and PAYE payments via the EMP201 in efiling and they were not shown here, so I had to put in the amounts manually. When you are satisfied with this page you need to click on "SELF ASSESS" to proceed (not that obvious to me). If there discrepancies in totals a box asking for a reason pops up. You need to type something in here for the system to proceed. Here I typed in "UIF PAID FOR LABOURERS FOR WHICH NO TAX CERTIFICATES HAVE BEEN ISSUED" Next a message pops up to say you need to go to "Submissions" to submit the EMP501. Go there and your EMP501 and all associated IRP5s and IT3(a) will be submitted together.
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