More people have been allowed to pay salary tax by instalments during the past four months. The Inland Revenue Department approved 3,268 cases between April and July, a 6.3 per cent increase on the same period last year. A department spokesman said more taxpayers had been experiencing financial problems. The department would only approve payment in instalments in cases of serious financial hardship. Documentary evidence and repayment plans submitted by taxpayers would be carefully and critically examined, the department spokesman said. The number of approved cases of payment by instalments for profits tax dropped slightly from 1,552 to 1,362. Meanwhile, fewer people were fined for defaulting on tax payments. The number of cases where a five per cent surcharge was imposed dropped 26.3 per cent to 32,930.