South African Revenue Service

tax-formsIt’s very seldom that praise is associated with a government office, but today is definitely one of those days. I’ve been filing my annual tax return electronically since it became available in South Africa a few years ago.

This year’s deadline for e-filing, is the 23rd of January 2009 for the 2008 tax year. So on Sunday morning I gathered together all my paperwork, my wife diligently helping sort out medical receipts, filled in what was still needed to on my electronic form and filed it. 

This morning, 3 full business days later, I received an SMS notifying me of an assessment on my tax return. I was pleasantly surprised that when I logged in my tax assessment had been completed and the money owed back to me would be deposited shortly. Now that’s impressive. SARS (no, not the disease) have come along way. Well done!

Now if only the guys that built the disasterous e-Natis System that the traffic department uses would learn a thing or two from the ones that built the e-filing system for SARS!