Heeding the call of the business sector, the Bureau of Internal Revenue has deferred the implementation of a regulation requiring the use of new receipts to Aug. 30, 2013.
This means that starting Aug. 31, all businesses operating in the country are required to start issuing new receipts printed by BIR-accredited printers.
Businesses found violating this rule will be slapped a fine of as much as P50,000 while their owners will face two-to four-year imprisonment.
Under the original schedule, businesses were given until June 30, 2013 to use their old receipts.
The BIR regulation also requires businesses to surrender their old receipts to the bureau.
The BIR announced the implementation of this regulation in January.
In seeking the extension, business groups said the six-month notice was not enough for them to prepare for the rule’s implementation.
“There will be no other extension after this one,” Internal Revenue Commissioner Kim Henares told reporters Thursday.
The BIR, she said, had spent P11 million for advertising to make the public aware of the new regulation.
But while businesses were given until Aug. 30 to use their old receipts, Henares said, they were still expected to have already applied for Authority to Print (ATP) new receipts.
She said the April 30 deadline for the ATP application remained and that businesses that applied for ATP after April 30 would have to pay a fine of P1,000.
The BIR said the regulation on the use of new receipts was meant to solve the proliferation of fake receipts that were being sold to tax evaders and smugglers.
It said the regulation was also issued in response to complaints that some unscrupulous BIR personnel were giving businesses a hard time to secure ATP to force them to tap the printing services of these personnel’s preferred printers, which were reportedly owned by their relatives.
Under the new rules, relatives of BIR personnel, up to fourth degree consanguinity, are not allowed to offer receipt-printing services.
Henares said 2,250 printing firms had been accredited by the BIR to print new receipts. Of these, 585 are operating in Metro Manila.
Top business groups, led by the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) and Philippine Exporters Confederation (Philexport), earlier said they wanted one to two years of notice before the rule’s implementation.
Henares, however, said the business groups’ proposed period would defeat the purpose of the regulation.
“The regulation is meant to prevent businesses from using their remaining fake receipts, which resulted in revenue losses on the part of the government. If we wait for two more years before we implement this regulation, the purpose of the rule would be defeated,” Henares said.