Resident Interest Withholding Final Tax

 

General Information

The Government has introduced legislation, which will require banks and other financial institutions to deduct withholding tax of 20% from payments of interest to its customers. This legislation was effective from 1 January, 2013. Resident Interest Final Withholding tax has also become final tax. This means that the gross amount of any interest income paid or credited to resident individuals by a financial institution in Fiji will be taxed at a fixed rate of 20%. The tax applies on any interest above $200.00 as per (Section 17(72) of the Income Tax Act. Where Resident Interest Withholding Tax is their only source of income, bank account holders do not have to lodge income tax return in 2014 and subsequent years as banks should have deducted the correct amount of tax from interest income. However if the RIWT has been overdeducted, the taxpayer may lodge a NRIWT/RIWT Refund Form.

Previous years withholding tax rates

Years Resident Rate Non-Resident Rate
2013 20% 10%
2012 20 % 10%
2011 31 % 10%
2010 31 % 10%

 

Resident Interest Withholding Final Tax (RIWT) shall not be payable where:

  • interest income received by the depositor in the current year does not exceed two hundred dollars FJ$200. In those cases where interest is paid or credited monthly, quarterly or on some other basis, no withholding tax will be deducted if total interest earned in that period does not exceed the yearly equivalent of FJ$200 for those periods.

Senior Citizens and Pensioners

With effect from 1st January 2014, all senior citizens (55 years old or above) and pensioners who earn interest income up to $16000 are eligible to apply for a Certificate Of Exemption from RIWT provided this is their only source of income. The requirements for pensioners and senior citizens to qualify for COE are stated below:

Pensioners

-       must be receiving pension or had received pension  from an approved fund (e.g. FNPF, Fiji  government pension, other approved fund)

-       total annual interest income must not be more than $16,000.00;

-       current source of income must be from pension and interest only.

Senior Citizens

-       must be 55 years old or above;

-       total annual interest income must not be more than $16,000;

-       current source of income must be from interest only;


What are the requirements for the application of RIWT Exemption Certificate?

RIWT is collected by banks from interest paid, if the source of the deposit is not exempt income. Tax exempt persons need to have a COE to avoid having RIWT deducted from their interest.A certificate of exemption will only be issued to the following bank account categories;

  • Term deposits
  • Fixed deposits

Before a COE will be given, the applicant must:

  • have all their tax returns lodged and
  • have all their taxes paid and
  • be able to explain the source of the funds on which interest is earned.

If the applicant does not have a TIN, they must complete the form Application for Registration as well as the Application Form for COE from RIWT.

Where to lodge your application

The form can be hand delivered to any of our Customer Service Centres or sent by post. You do not need to buy a stamp for the envelope, as correspondence addressed to the Commissioner will be carried by Post Fiji free of charge.

 

Validity of COE The Certificate is valid for 1 year from the issuance date.

Further informationFor further assistance on Resident interest withholding tax , you may send an email request to:tepu@frca.org.fjcectaxquerysuv@frca.org.fj or info@frca.org.fj

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HEAD OFFICE LOCATION

CONTACT DETAILS

Revenue & Customs Services Complex,
Lot 1 Corner of Queen Elizabeth Drive
& Ratu Sukuna Road,
Nasese,
Suva.
Phone: (+679) 3243000
Fax: (679) 3315537
Email: info@frca.org.fj