Taxmen now ‘mapping’ lawyers

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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) RR-4 Pampanga and the Revenue District Office (RDO) No. 21B South Pampanga on Tuesday started mapping lawyers and law firms in Pampanga and Angeles City.

BIR Calabarzon Director Araceli Francisco and Revenue District Officer Consuelo De Asis started the mapping drive at the office of lawyer Peter Paul Maglalang, president of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) Pampanga Chapter.

Francisco told Sun.Star Pampanga that their purpose was to inspect tax documents such as business registration, books of accounts and official receipt booklets used by the law office.


The BIR has been zeroing in on professionals like doctors, lawyers and architects in its goal to increase revenue collections. The said working groups are allegedly among those who are not paying the right taxes to the government.

During the mapping, Maglalang personally received the BIR officials and showed the documents that the lawyer complies with all the requisites of Philippine tax laws.

Francisco said that Maglalang's office was compliant in its tax duties "though it needs to make sure that the recording of its business transactions are updated."

Official receipts issued, the regional director explained, have to be recorded promptly after the end of each working day to make sure that every transaction is properly entered in the books of accounts.

De Asis said that Maglalang volunteered to be mapped first by the BIR since he is the president of IBP-Pampanga which has about 600 members.

She said that tax mapping is among the activities that the BIR undertakes every year to ensure the compliance of business establishments.

"But we are not prosecuting whenever we pay the business a visit. We are just there to check if they are following the proper procedures in the recording of their sales, expenses and other dealings which are relevant to their payment of taxes. If we find some shortcomings, we teach the taxpayers what to do to correct these errors," she said.

De Asis added that aside from lawyers and law firms, they will also be visiting the Pampanga Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. Fil- Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc. and the Metro Angeles Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc.

For his part, Maglalang said the “visit” changed his perception about BIR inspections.

"Before, I had the impression that the BIR visit would mean more taxes to pay or, worse, a legal persecution," Maglalang said.

The IBP official also pledged to support the BIR in informing his fellow lawyers in Pampanga to update their tax documents to prevent possible “hassles” in the future. (Chris Navarro)

Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on April 23, 2014.

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