Sars scraps stamp duty

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2 April 2009

The South African Revenue Service (Sars) has abolished the Stamp Duty Act (77 of 1968), with effect from midnight on 31 March this year.

The abolition forms part of the on-going efforts to reduce the administrative burden on taxpayers and to simplify the tax system.

"The scrapping of the act follows the whittling down of the scope of stamp duties over the past few years until only property leases of over five years required stamp duties to be paid," Sars says in a statement issued this week.

"This is now done away with from 1 April 2009."

Outstanding duties

The scrapping of the act is, however, not retrospective and taxpayers remain liable for stamp duties due up to 31 march 2009 and any outstanding stamp duties must still be paid.

"Adhesive revenue stamps will only be demonetorised from 1 November 2009, to allow time for other government departments which utilise these to introduce alternative measures," Sars says. "After that date they may not be used for any purpose."

Claiming refunds

Holders of existing stocks of revenue stamps have until 31 October 2010 to claim a refund for the stamps from their nearest Sars branch.

Revenue franking machines will also be finally scrapped on 1 November 2009 and any value remaining on these machines can be refunded until 31 October 2010 at a Sars branch.

Procedures for the claiming of refunds were published in a Government Gazette on 27 March 2009 which is available on the stamp duty page.

SAinfo reporter