taxes

[Ask the Tax Whiz] Are tax deadlines extended due to ECQ or MECQ?

Mon Abrea
[Ask the Tax Whiz] Are tax deadlines extended due to ECQ or MECQ?
The Philippine Tax Whiz tells us about deadline adjustments as some areas go into lockdown in August 2021

To prevent the further spread of COVID-19 cases amid the threat of the Delta variant, Metro Manila and nearby areas are returning to strict forms of lockdown in August 2021.

During enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) and modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ), can the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) extend tax deadlines without legislation? When is the new deadline?

Yes. Section 53 of the tax code provides that the internal revenue commissioner, in meritorious cases, may grant a reasonable extension of time for filing income returns.

In this regard, the BIR issued Revenue Memorandum Circular (RMC) No. 91-2021 extending the deadline of filing and payment of corresponding taxes falling within the period from August 6 to August 20, 2021, for taxpayers under ECQ and MECQ for a period of 15 calendar days from August 20, 2021.

Due to ECQ and/or MECQ guidelines, are there any considerations regarding the mode of filing and payment during the lockdown period?

Yes. Aside from the eServices of the BIR where taxpayers may file and pay online, they may opt to pay their taxes at the nearest authorized agent banks (AABs) notwithstanding revenue district office (RDO) jurisdiction.

They may also file and pay to the concerned revenue collection officers (RCOs) of the nearest RDO, even in areas where there are AABs. This is provided that payment in cash should not exceed P20,000.

For online payment, taxpayers may pay their taxes through online payment facilities like the Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) Link.Biz Portal, Development Bank of the Philippines’ Pay Tax Online, Union Bank Online Web and Mobile Payment Facility, and GCash or PayMaya.

If the lockdown gets extended, would the filing and payment be further extended too?

Yes. If the ECQ and/or MECQ would be extended, the filing and payment of corresponding taxes and submission of reports and attachments falling within the period would also be extended by 15 calendar days from the lifting of the ECQ and/or MECQ.

In this time of economic and health crisis, business owners must ensure financial stability and profitability of their companies. Avoiding unnecessary costs and expenses like interest and penalties from tax assessment will save them millions of pesos.

Aside from filing and paying taxes on time, business owners must comply with all other tax rules and regulations to get rid of BIR problems such as issuance of a letter of authority, or worse, being sued for tax evasion. An Annual Tax Health Check or Annual Tax Review will help assess the risk exposure and any tax deficiency of the company. Email us at consult@acg.ph for more information on how you can stay out of trouble with the BIR. – Rappler.com

Mon Abrea, CPA, MBA, is the co-chair of the Paying Taxes-EODB Task Force. With the TaxWhizPH mobile app as his brainchild, he was recognized as one of the Outstanding Young Persons of the World, an Asia CEO Young Leader, and one of the Ten Outstanding Young Men of the Philippines because of his tax advocacy and expertise. Currently, he is the chairman and CEO of the Asian Consulting Group and trustee of the Center for Strategic Reforms of the Philippines – the advocacy partner of the Bureau of Internal Revenue, Department of Trade and Industry, and Anti-Red Tape Authority on ease of doing business and tax reform. Visit www.acg.ph for more information or email him at mon@acg.ph and download the TaxWhizPH app for free if you have tax questions.

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