It’s tax season and you need to pay SARS (South African Revenue Service), but with long queues and the threat of COVID-19 you want an alternative way of paying.
If you are an FNB (First National Bank) account holder here are the methods that you can use to pay SARS.
There are many ways to pay SARS via FNB, and this may include the following:
- eFiling on the FNB online Banking (Quickest method)
- EFT (electronic funds transfer)
- Paying recipient through an FNB ATM
- Paying at an FNB branch
The above steps apply to tax payments for individuals and small businesses. For corporations and medium to large enterprises refer to ‘eFiling Payment Method for Corporates’ section on the FNB eFiling page.
The following sections will elaborate on the various methods of payment and this will be followed by the limitations and hurdles of using each method.
01. Pay SARS Using eFiling on FNB (Quickest method)
Out of the four methods, eFiling is one the most convenient. Keep in mind, however, that you will have to setup ‘Credit Push’ on your SARS eFiling site ( Refer to SARS website on how to setup “Credit Push” ). This is important as it allows any eFiling payments to appear on your FNB online banking, automatically.
The eFiling method requires the following steps:
- Login to your FNB online banking
- Select the ‘Payments’ tab or ‘Payments’ icon on the FNB home page.
- Select the ‘eFiling + Smart IDs’ sub tab on the ‘Pay Recipient’ Page.
- A list of eFiling Payment requests (which you created on the SARS site) will appear with a ‘Pay’ and ‘Delete’ button next to each request.
- Select the ‘Pay’ button
- A ‘Please Confirm’ page will appear siting the details of the transaction. Check if all payment details are correct.
- Click the ‘Pay’ button or Cancel if details are incorrect (this will return you back to the list of payments)
- Click the ‘Finish’ button once the ‘Thank You’ page and you are done.
The process is safer and can lead to minimal errors as it doesn’t require any information from you on the payment details, it is automatic.
02. Using EFT Via FNB for SARS Payments
Contrary to the eFiling method, payments to SARS can be made through EFT.
- On the ‘Once off Payments’ page you can select ‘public recipient’ and click on the ‘search’.
- The ‘Public Recipient Search’ page will appear, and you can type in ‘SARS-’ followed by the appropriate prefix for your tax payment.
- Please note that you must cite the correct ‘Payment Reference Number’ (PRN) on the ‘Their Refence’ text field (on FNB online banking) so SARS can correctly identify your payment.
- Your ‘Payment Reference Number’ should appear on your tax statement.
This method can be done on the FNB online Website or the FNB App.
03. SARS Payments via FNB ATM
You may also make payments at selected FNB ATMs provided you add the ‘SARS-’ as a beneficiary and you must cite the PRN on the ‘Their Reference’ text field.
To do this you will find your nearest ATM that can perform transfers and payments. Once found you may do the following:
- Insert your bank card and enter Pin
- On the main menu, you must select ‘More Options’
- On the ‘Service Menu’ select ‘Transfers and Payments’
- On the ‘Transfers and Payments’ menu select ‘Make a Transfer or Payment’
- Select from which account you will deposit the money
- Then select the beneficiary account i.e., ‘SARS-’
- Key in the amount payable, and press pay/proceed
- The payment details will appear on the ATM screen
- Press Proceed and you are done.
The option to use direct deposit through FNB cardless services allows you to pay public recipients over the ATMs (with a deposit facility).
However, from my experience when keying in the first three characters in the ATM, the ATM does not recognize ‘SAR’ as a public recipient and requests you key in the correct characters.
04. SARS Payments Via FNB Branch
Another method, which is less desirable than the other methods, is to pay at an FNB branch where you will cite the ‘SARS-’ account and referencing the PRN on the deposit slip.
However, with long queues and the threat of COVID-19, you may want to make your SARS payments at home.
Keep in mind that the eFiling, and the EFT option has its limitation, which will be discussed in the next section.
Limitations of SARS Payments through FNB
When making payments to SARS on the FNB online banking cite, whether through eFiling or EFT, there is a cut-off time. This is usually between 20h00 till the following day (according to FNB).
Payments can only be made from Mondays to Saturdays and no payments are allowed for Sundays or Public holidays.
If you have accidentally cited the wrong reference number, there is no option to reverse the payment or correct the mistake. You could try to contact FNB on 087 575 9405 to request a manual reversal of payment, but SARS payments are immediate through online banking and this means that you would have to contact SARS to remedy the issue.
Therefore, it is essential to make sure you have the right tax statements in front of you when making a payment.
eFiling can only be done on the main FNB online banking website, which limits you to using a laptop or battling through navigating the website on your phone.
The above methods are the many ways you could pay SARS via FNB. The most robust being the eFiling method since your payment request will automatically appear on your eFiling page.
It would be nice to have access to eFiling over the FNB App as it would make it more convenient for those away from home or on holiday.
EFT payments would be a better option for the more attentive and careful since you must cite the correct information on your payment details.
ATM deposits require you to have online banking and add SARS as a beneficiary, which is time-consuming and longwinded. It would be nice if FNB could offer direct deposits( card/carless) to SARS on the ATM without requiring this step.
When researching this topic, contacting FNB customer service was very futile as they would direct me back to SARS for help. I believe they want to know the full nature of your tax payment right to the tee.
YOUR TURN: Do you know an easier way to pay SARS? Did I miss anything crucial in the article? Let me know in the comments below so we can start learning from each other!