What are RICA and FICA? Everything you need to know

What are RICA and FICA? Everything you need to know

Have you always been asking yourself why RICA and FICA are necessary to both companies and human beings? If so, this is the best place for you. RICA helps in preventing criminals from illegally using cell phones. On the other hand, FICA plays a vital role in fighting the financial crime of a company such as money laundering, tax evasion, and fighting terrorist financing activities.

Image: pexels.com, befunky.com (modified by author)
Source: UGC

It is essential to fight fraud activities such as identity theft. For you to be able to protect your company and other legal entities, the government established an act which helps to prevent illegal activities. Namely: Financial Intelligence Centre Act and Regulation of Interception of Communications and Provision of Communication Related Information Act.

What is RICA and how does it work?

RICA is a piece of South African legislation that governs the interception of electronic communications. It helps in investigating, detecting, and preventing crimes. It has to impose duties on telecommunication service providers for them to obtain and retain particular information from their clients. In this case, it is mandatory for all customers of South Africa to register the modern and existing cellular phone numbers.

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how to rica
Image: instagram.com, @mybroadband
Source: UGC

What is the purpose of RICA?

The main purpose is to list and combat the different types of criminal activities such as high treason, sedition, fraud, money laundering, among others.

How to RICA online?

Most people ask how they can RICA their sim-cards. But the fact is that it is even possible to RICA online. You only need to follow a few steps:

  • Upload a proof of address.
  • Verify your I.D.
  • Live face recognition test, after-which before you carry out the tests, you need the following:
  1. Your national ID credentials or a smart card.
  2. Proof of address, and it should not be older than three months.
  3. A mobile phone.

How can I check my RICA status?

Here are the guidelines on how to check your status.

  • For the MTN subscribers, they can dial *131*4# or 083 123 7422 and be notified using a message whether your phone is registered or not.
  • MTN provides an online checking service where subscribers can enter their cell phone numbers and check their status.
  • Those who have subscribed to Vodacom can SMS the word RICA to 31050 or call 082 111.
  • The Cell C users can dial *133*7422* or call 084 147.
  • Virgin Mobile customers can dial *124#.

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Is RICA illegal?

Yes. The privacy international and legal resources center and some of the high court ruling in South Africa declared that Regulation of Interception of Communications and Provision of Communication Related Information Act is unconstitutional and invalid. There is a growing body of confirmation of surveillance abuses in South Africa. Some joint shareholders said that “they are delighted by the judgment made by the government, that it is illegal.“

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What does FICA stand for?

FICA South Africa stands for the Financial Intelligence Centre Act.

what is fica south africa
Image: facebook.com, @OfficialFIC
Source: UGC

What is FICA?

What is Financial Intelligence Centre Act in South Africa? For every individual who earns a wage or salary, you are likely to be subjected to the two federal payroll taxes, which are social security and medicare. The two payroll taxes are FICA meaning.

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What is the main purpose of FICA?

The main goal is to assist in the identification of the proceeds of unlawful activities, combat money laundering, and fight the financing of terrorist and related activities.

What is a FICA document?

FICA documents are the required securities in the institutions which help to establish and verify the identities and residential addresses of their clients. For you to be part of FICA and RICA, some documents are mandatory.

For the individuals, the following documents are required:

  • South African citizens should provide their I.D. documents or passport for the foreigners
  • Confirmation of residential address
  • VAT registration certificate
  • Copy of the SARS document which shows income tax number
  • Copy of the bank document which entails personal banking report

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For the minors, the following documents are required:

  • Copy of the birth certificate or an I.D. document
  • In case of a guardian, give the document that confirms the legal guardianship
  • Copy of SARS document that verifies the income tax number of minor
  • Residential address and it should be less than three months old
  • For the guardians, provide an affirmation that will show the residential address with the minor
  • For S.A. citizens, provide a copy of the I.D. document or a passport for the foreigners
  • Copy of a bank document which proves the parent/ guardian banking report

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For the company, the following new requirements are needed for FICA registration:

  • Company CIPC Financial Intelligence Centre Act registration documents
  • Company address and it should be less than three months old
  • Copy of SARS documents that shows its income tax or provide a VAT registration number of your company
  • Copy of the resolution of the company letterhead, which should be signed by the authorized board.
  • Copy of a bank record that confirms the financial details of a company.
  • Provide a register of all the shareholders indicating shares they own and how they control the company.
  • Offer proof of source of revenue of your business.

For a non-resident company, the following documents are required:

  • Copy of a foreign company registration document
  • Proof of company address
  • Record which confirms tax registration number for a company
  • Letterhead resolution signed by all directors and their representatives
  • Copy of the bank credentials which entails foreign bank information of the company
  • I.D or passport for every shareholder who has 25% of shares of that company
  • List of all shareholders with a written statement showing the ownership and the management structure of the corporation
  • Evidence of source of revenue

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For the partnership, the following documents are required:

  • Copy of the agreement made by ownership of the business
  • Address of the company
  • Resolution signed by all partners nominating authorized signature
  • Copy of SARS credentials confirms income tax/ or VAT registration number
  • Copy of the bank document
  • For the authorized signatory, their copy of I.D. and proof of residential address is required

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For the unincorporated entities such as churches, clubs, etc., the following documents are needed:

  • Copy of report showing individuals who exercise control over the entity
  • Declaration signed by members of the company and the one who controls the entity, and also authorized signature is required
  • Proof of physical address
  • Copy of SARS documents showing all the income tax
  • Copy of a bank document showing the bank information of the partnership account
  • Proof of source of funds
new fica requirements
Image: facebook.com, @OfficialFIC
Source: UGC

How must FICA records be kept?

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In section 23 of the FICA Act, elaborate that the records should be kept for at least five years starting from the date in which the business relationship was terminated. They may also be kept for the five years from the time the transactions were concluded. It is also well indicated that there is no distinction in the Financial Intelligence Centre between transactions reported under section 29 of the Financial Intelligence Centre Act and the other transactions. Financial Intelligence Centre Act helps prevents money laundry by ensuring that no bank should open an account for a new customer unless those customers provide their original documents.

How does FICA prevent money laundering?

Financial Intelligence Centre Act compels the business community to take steps to control and prevent money laundering. Financial Intelligence Centre Act creates several compliance obligations for institutions such as banks, estate agents, brokers, attorneys, insurance companies, and motor dealers.

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Now, you know more about the process of RICA and FICA. All you need is to follow the above guideline, and you won’t regret it.

DISCLAIMER: This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!


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