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Tax Awareness Month

In 2005, April was declared as Tax Awareness Month by virtue of Proclamation No. 812, s. 2005, putting a premium on the “value of taxes to our society” and how “taxation plays a pivotal and crucial role in nation building.”

This coincides as well with the deadline for the filing of our annual income tax return (ITR) on April 15. But for this year since April 15 falls on a Sunday, the deadline will likely be moved to April 16.

Under the TRAIN law, the filing of first quarterly income tax return for 2018 was moved to May 15 from April 15. This is to allow taxpayers to file and pay their annual income tax for the previous year correctly and on time.

For electronic tax filing and payment system (eFPS), Deputy Commissioners Lanee David of Information Systems Group and Arnel Guballa of Operations Group issued an advisory on the authorized BIR facilities, to wit:

These facilities are accessible through the BIR website: www.bir.gov.ph.

 

The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) under the leadership of Commissioner Caesar “Billy” Dulay is more taxpayer-centric owing to the fact that we have a very narrow taxpayer base and low voluntary compliance. This is probably the reason why the theme of the annual tax campaign kickoff this year is “SALAMAT SA’YO” which is a deviation from its usual drive of asking taxpayers to pay their correct taxes on time.

 

It acknowledges the contribution of taxpayers in the 2017 actual tax collection of P1.779 trillion where the BIR posted the highest growth rate and tax effort ratio in the last five years according to BIR website.

 

This is very much aligned with the principal objectives of BIR i.e., attain collection targets, improve taxpayer satisfaction and strengthen good governance, also to fully implement the new TRAIN law which is expected to raise revenue collections.

 

To improve taxpayer satisfaction is to improve voluntary compliance. Thus, the BIR’s massive tax education campaign and public awareness including the series of public consultations especially on the new TRAIN law is very laudable.

 

As the advocacy partner of BIR, CSR Philippines in partnership with Tax Whiz Academy is also extending its free tax assistance through its #ITRHelpdesk. Here are the options of our taxpayers:

 

  1. Call (02) 622-7720
  2. E-mail taxacademy@acg.ph
  3. Follow @AskTheTaxWhiz and catch the Twitter live daily at 3:00 PM. Use the hashtags #AskTheTaxWhiz #ITRHelpdesk
  4. For those with a copy of the TRAIN Handbook, you may drop by the ACG office in Quezon City after 5:00 PM for a free consultation. First-come, first served –5 slots per day except on Saturday, April 14. RSVP: Company name, tax concerns, contact details to taxacademy@acg.ph for confirmation of slot;
  5. Share our #ITRHelpdesk poster and videos with your tax questions. Tag us so we can answer.
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Don’t forget to follow/subscribe to our social media accounts:

Facebook: for free tax bulletin and updates

YouTube: for free tax tips

Website: for tax articles

Now, we need more active and responsible taxpaying public. Let’s help the BIR collect the right taxes.

For taxpayer assistance, you may directly contact the Customer Assistance Division (CAD), formerly BIR Contact Center, using the following new landline numbers: 981-7003, 981-7020, 981-7030, 981-7040, or 981-7046, or email your tax queries and concerns to contact_us@bir.gov.ph.

Mon Abrea, popularly known as the Philippine Tax Whiz, is one of the 2017 Outstanding Persons of the World, a Move Awards 2016 Digital Mover, one of the 2015 The Outstanding Young Men of the Philippines (TOYM), an Asia CEO Young Leader of the Year, Distinguished Bedan in the field of Accounting and Taxation, and founding president of the Asian Consulting Group (ACG) and Center for Strategic Reforms of the Philippines (CSR Philippines). He is the national bestselling author of “Got A Question About Taxes? #AskTheTaxWhiz.”

Follow Mon (@askthetaxwhiz) on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. You may also email him at mon@acg.ph.

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