The term proof of address, also known as proof of address, is self-explanatory. It simply refers to a document that ascertains where you reside or live. This document must contain your address and full name printed on it. There are conditions where you have to avail evidence of your address. For example, different facilities may ask for proof of address in South Africa. This is vital in determining eligibility for specific classifications and benefits for a program. Proof of address may also be a requirement by the law.
When is Proof of Address / Residence Necessary in South Africa?
Going by the Financial Intelligence Act 38, 2001, FICA was founded to counteract financial crimes and to protect banking customers from such crimes. Therefore, it is required of the banks to keep up-to-date and accurate information about their clients. The information includes proof of residence by FICA.
Proof of residence or address is also necessary for a driver’s license in South Africa. This comes after an amendment to the National Road Traffic Act. Motorists must fill in proof of address form when applying for or renewing their driver’s license. The information is uploaded to the Electronic National Administration Traffic Information System database.
The South African Revenue Service (SARS) also requires citizens to provide proof of residence. SARS is the body authorized to collect taxes in South Africa. This institution ensures that all organizations and citizens comply with the existing tax laws to enhance tax collection efficiency.
For a document to be approved as a valid proof of address or residence, some conditions must be met. These conditions include;
- The document must not be older than 3 months (for monthly issued reports).
- The document must not be older than 1 year (for documents issued annually).
- Documents containing postal addresses only are not valid for use as proof of residence.
- The document must show your township name and your physical address or ERF number
- In circumstances where your proof of address FNB bears a third party’s name, you must complete a declaration of cohabitation and submit other relevant documentation. The declaration statement must include your name, contact of the deponent, your residential address, the relationship between the client and the deponent, identity numbers of both the deponent and the client, and verification of the address of the client.
- Electronic records are only permitted on condition that there’s proof of sender and complete details of their address are visible on the document.
What Qualifies as Proof of Residence?
Given the importance of proof of address when applying for essential services or accounts online, it is wise to know what you can use. Here are some of the documents that qualify as proof of address in South Africa.
Bank statements are probably the most common forms of proof of address as they are easy to source and have the full name and address of the client on the document.
How to Get a Bank Statement
- Walk into a branch. Simply walk into your local bank branch and request a bank statement.
- Contact your bank via email or phone. Several banks in South Africa provide phone banking. Call the bank and request them to send your bank statement to your email address.
- Online banking. Online banking provides the fastest way to get your bank statement. All you need to do is download it from the online banking portal of your bank.
- ATM. If you cannot access online banking, then you can use an ATM machine to acquire your bank statement.
A utility bill is another document that you may use as proof of address. Utility bills include anything from your lights and water bills to the property agent statement. For it to be a valid proof of address, it must not be older than 3 months.
Active Lease or Rental Agreement
If you are renting an office space or home, you should have an active rental or lease agreement that you can use as proof of residence. Ensure that the document is not more than 1 year old. If you do not have one or if it is more 1 year old, speak to your home or office space owner. They should be able to provide you with an updated rental or lease agreement.
If you have a Telkom or any fixed line provider, you may use your contract or bill as proof of address. It should not be more than 3 months old as most companies will not accept it.
Cell phone Contract
Cellphone contract is another common form of proof of address. Since a cellphone contract generally need 12 of 24 months renewal, be sure to use your latest and active cell phone contract. You may get your contract by walking into a cellphone shop or contacting them directly.
Subscription Television Statement
A typical example is the Multichoice statement. Besides this, any T.V statement can work so long as it has your address and full name on the document. Be sure to use your most recent copy. In most cases, most agencies do not accept statements older than three months.
Medical Aid Policy
If you have medical aid, you may use your policy document as proof of residence. Ensure the policy document includes your full name, policy number, and address. While it doesn’t matter how old the policy document is, it needs to be an active medical policy.
Most Recent Pay slips
You can also use a pay slip can as proof of address if you are working. Ensure your pay slip has a proper letterhead with your full name, physical address, employee number, and your employer’s full name.
Traffic fines have this advantage. You can use them as proof of address. To do this, you must ensure your traffic fine was issued from the Metro Police Department directly, as most facilities will not accept E-toll statements. It should also have been issued within a period of 12 months. Traffic fines normally come through the post. If you have lost yours, you may be able to get a copy from the local Metro Police Department.
Vehicle Registration Documents
If you have ever registered any vehicle in your name, then you may consider utilizing your registration document as your proof of address.
Your chosen proof of residence or address document must have your address and full name printed on it.