BAR Q AND A: (2014-2017) TAX

2017 BAR EXAMINATIONS
TAXATION LAW
November 12, 2017 2:00 P.M. – 6:00 P.M.
INSTRUCTIONS

1. This Questionnaire contains ten (10) pages. Check and make sure that your Questionnaire has the correct number of pages. You may write on your Questionnaire as you answer the questions.

Read each question very carefully and write your answers in your Bar Examination Notebook in the same order of the questions. Answer the essay questions legibly, clearly, and concisely. Write your answers only on the front of every page of your Notebook. If the front pages are not sufficient, continue at the back of the first page and so on. Start every number on a separate page, but an answer to a sub-question under the same number may be written continuously on the same page and on the immediately succeeding pages until the answer is complete. Follow the numbering sequence of the Questionnaire in your answers.

2. Your answers should demonstrate your ability to analyze the facts, apply the pertinent laws and jurisprudence, and arrive at sound and logical conclusions. Answers must fully explain even if the questions do not expressly require explanations. A “Yes” or “No” answer sans explanation or discussion will not be given full credit.

3. Marking of your Notebook with your name or other identifying signs or symbols extraneous to the subject matter of the questions may be considered as cheating and may disqualify you.

Good luck!

YOU CAN BRING HOME THE QUESTIONNAIRE.

JUSTICE LUCAS P. BERSAMIN
Chairman
2017 Bar Examinations

I.

SMZ, Inc. is a VAT-registered enterprise engaged in the general construction business. HP International contracts the services of SMZ, Inc. to construct HP lnternational’s factory building located in the Laguna Techno Park, a special economic zone. HP International is registered with the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) as an ecozone export enterprise, and, as such, enjoys income tax holiday pursuant to the Special Economic Zone Act of 1995.

SMZ, Inc. files an application with the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) for the VAT zero-rating of its sale of services to HP International. However, the BIR denies SMZ, lnc.’s application on the ground that HP International already enjoys income tax holiday.

Is the BIR correct in denying SMZ, lnc.’s application? Explain your answer. (6%)

II.

Wreck Corporation is a domestic corporation engaged in the business of importing, refining and selling petroleum products. During the period from September 1, 2014 to December 31, 2014, Wreck Corporation imported 225 million liters of Jet A-1 aviation fuel and paid the excise taxes thereon. Seventy-five percent (75%) of the total volume of aviation fuel imported were actually sold to international carriers of Philippine and foreign registries for their use or consumption outside of the Philippines in the period from November 1, 2014 to December 31, 2014. Wreck Corporation did not pass on to the international carriers the excise taxes it paid on the importation of petroleum products.

On June 25, 2015, Wreck Corporation filed an administrative claim for refund or issuance of tax credit certificate amounting to the excise taxes it had paid on the importation of 225 million liters of Jet A-1 aviation fuel.

If you were the Commissioner of Internal Revenue, will you grant Wreck Corporation’s administrative claim for refund or issuance of tax credit certificate? Explain your answer. (6%)

III.

Vanderful, lnc.’s income tax return for taxable year 2015 showed an overpayment due to excess creditable withholding taxes in the amount of ₱750,000.00. The company opted to carry over the excess income tax credits as tax credit against its quarterly income tax liabilities for the next succeeding years. For taxable year 2016, the company’s income tax return showed an overpayment due to excess creditable withholding taxes in the amount of ₱1,100,000.00, which included the carry-over from year 2015 in the amount of ₱750,000.00 because its operations resulted in a net loss; hence, there was no application for any tax liability. This time, the company opted and marked the box “To be refunded’ in respect of the total amount of ₱1,100,000.00.

Vanderful, Inc. now files in the BIR a claim for refund of unutilized overpayments of ₱1,100,00.00. Is the claim meritorious? (4%)

IV.

On the basis of a warrant of seizure and detention issued by the Collector of Customs for the purpose of enforcing the Tariff and Customs Code, assorted brands of liquor and cigarettes said to have been illegally imported into the Philippines were seized from a store operating in a Freeport zone. The store owner moved for the quashal of the warrant on the ground that the Collector of Customs had no jurisdiction to enforce it within the Freeport zone.

Should the motion to quash be granted? (3%)

V.

On March 30, 2016, XL Co. filed an administrative claim for refund of unutilized input VAT for taxable year 2014, together with supporting documents. XL Co. claimed that its sale of generated power and delivery of electric capacity and energy was VAT zero-rated. Due to the inaction of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue (CIR), XL Co. filed with the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) the following judicial claims for refund:

Period Covered Date Filed
1st Quarter of 2014 March 31, 2016
2nd Quarter of 2014 June 30, 2016
3rd and 4th Quarter of 2014 August 12, 2016

Is XL Co.’s claim for VAT refund timely filed? Explain your answer. (5%)

VI.

Heeding the pronouncement of the President that the worsening traffic condition in the metropolis was a sign of economic progress, the Congress enacted Republic Act No. 10701 (RA 10701), also known as An Act Imposing a Transport Tax on the Purchase of Private Vehicles.

Under RA 10701, buyers of private vehicles are required to pay a transport tax equivalent to 5°/o of the total purchase price per vehicle purchased. RA 10701 provides that the Land Transportation Office (LTO) shall not accept for registration any new vehicles without proof of payment of the 5% transport tax. RA 10701 further provides that existing owners of private vehicles shall be required to pay a tax equivalent to 5% of the current fair market value of every vehicle registered with the LTO. However, RA 10701 exempts owners of public utility vehicles and the Government from the coverage of the 5% transport tax.

A group of private vehicle owners sue on the ground that the law is unconstitutional for contravening the Equal Protection Clause of the Constitution.

Rule on the constitutionality and validity of RA 10701. (5%)

VII.

Calvin Dela Pisa was a Permits and Licensing Officer (rank-and-file) of Sta. Portia Realty Corporation (SPRC). He invited the Regional Director of the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB) to lunch at the Sulo Hotel in Quezon City to discuss the approval of SPRC’s application for a development permit in connection with its subdivision development project in Pasig City. At breakfast the following day, Calvin met a prospective client interested to enter into a joint venture with SPRC for the construction of a residential condominium unit in Cainta, Rizal.

Calvin incurred expenses for the lunch and breakfast meetings he had with the Regional Director of HLURB and the prospective client, respectively. The expenses were duly supported by official receipts issued in his name. At month’s end, he requested the reimbursement of his expenses, and SPRC granted his request.

(a) Can SPRC claim an allowable deduction for the expenses incurred by Calvin? Explain your answer. (2.5%)

(b) Is the reimbursement received by Calvin from SPRC subject to tax? Explain your answer. (2.5%)

VIII.

On April 30, 2015, Daryl resigned as the production manager of 52nd Avenue, a television studio owned by SSS Entertainment Corporation. 52nd Avenue issued to her a Certificate of Withholding Tax on Compensation (BIR Form No. 2316), which showed that the tax withheld from her compensation was equal to her income tax due for the period from January 2015 to April 30, 2015.

A month after her resignation, Daryl put up her own studio and started producing short films. She was able to earn a meager income from her short films but did not keep record of her production expenses.

Is Daryl qualified for substituted filing for taxable year 2015? Explain your answer. (3%)

IX.

Upon his retirement, Alfredo transferred his savings derived from his salary as a marketing assistant to a time deposit with AAB Bank. The bank regularly deducted 20% final withholding tax on the interest income from the time deposit.

Alfredo contends that the 20% final tax on the interest income constituted double taxation because his salary had been already subjected to withholding tax.

Is Alfredo’s contention correct? Explain your answer. (3%)

X.

On January 27, 2017, Ramon, the comptroller of Vantage Point, Inc., executed a document entitled Waiver of the Statute of Limitations in connection with the BIR’s investigation of the tax liabilities of the company for the year 2012. However, the Board of Directors of Vantage Point, Inc. did not adopt a board resolution authorizing Ramon to execute the waiver.

On October 14, 2017, Vantage Point, Inc. received a preliminary assessment notice from the BIR indicating its deficiency withholding taxes for the year 2012. Vantage Point, Inc. filed its protest. On October 30, 2017, the BIR issued a formal letter of demand and final assessment notice. Vantage Point, Inc. again filed a protest. The Commissioner of Internal Revenue denied the protests and directed the collection of the assessed deficiency taxes.

Accordingly, Vantage Point, Inc. filed a petition for review in the CTA to seek the cancellation and withdrawal of the assessment on the ground of prescription.

(a) What constitutes a valid waiver of the statute of limitations for the assessment and collection of taxes? Explain your answer. (3%)

(b) Has the right of the Government to assess and collect deficiency taxes from Vantage Point, Inc. for the year 2012 prescribed? Explain your answer. (3%)

XI.

The Board of Directors of Sumo Corporation, a company primarily engaged in the business of marketing and distributing pest control products, approved the partial cessation of its commercial operations, resulting in the separation of 32 regular employees. Only half of the affected employees were notified of the board resolution.

Rule on the taxability of the separation pay and indemnity that will be received by the affected employees as the result of their separation from service. Explain your answer. (3%)

XII.

On September 17, 2015, Data Realty, Inc., a real-estate corporation duly organized and existing under Philippine law, sold to Jenny Vera a condominium unit at Freedom Residences in Malabon City with an area of 32.31 square meters for a contract price of ₱4,213,000.00. The condominium unit had a zonal value amounting to ₱2,877,000.00 and fair market value amounting to ₱550,000.00.

(a) Is the transaction subject to value-added tax and documentary stamp tax? Explain your answer. (3%)

(b) Would your answer be the same if the property was sold by a bank in a foreclosure sale? Explain your answer. (3%)

XIII.

BATAS Law is a general professional partnership operating in the City of Valenzuela. It regularly pays value-added tax on its services. All its lawyers have individually paid the required professional tax for the year 2017. However, as a condition for the renewal of its business permit for the year 2017, the City Treasurer of Valenzuela assessed BAT AS Law for the payment of percentage business tax on its gross receipts for the year 2016 in accordance with the Revenue Tax Code of Valenzuela.

Is BATAS Law liable to pay the assessed percentage business tax? Explain your answer. (3%)

XIV.

Globesmart Services, Inc. received a final assessment notice with formal letter of demand from the BIR for deficiency income tax, value-added tax and withholding tax for the taxable year 2016 amounting to P48 million. Globesmart Services, Inc. filed a protest against the assessment, but the Commissioner of Internal Revenue denied the protest. Hence, Globesmart Services, Inc. filed a petition for review in the CTA with an urgent motion to suspend the collection of tax.

After hearing, the CTA Division issued a resolution granting the motion to suspend but required Globesmart Services, Inc. to post a surety bond equivalent to the deficiency assessment within 15 days from notice of the resolution. Globesmart Services, Inc. moved for the partial reconsideration of the resolution and for the reduction of the bond to an amount it could obtain. The CTA Division issued another resolution reducing the amount of the surety bond to Jl24 million. The latter amount was still more than the net worth of Globesmart Services, Inc. as reported in its audited financial statements.

(a) May the collection of taxes be suspended? Explain your answer. (3%)

(b) Is the CTA Division justified in requiring Globesmart Services, Inc. to post a surety bond as a condition for the suspension of the deficiency tax collection? Explain your answer. (3%)

XV.

Casimira died on June 19, 2017 after three weeks of confinement due to an unsuccessful liver transplant. For her confinement, she had incurred substantial medical expenses that she financed through personal loans secured by mortgages on her real properties. Her heirs are still in the process of making an inventory of her assets that can be used to pay the estate taxes, if any, which are due on December 19, 2017.

(a) Are the medical expenses, personal loans and mortgages incurred by Casimira deductible from her gross estate? Explain your answer.(5%)

(b) May the heirs of Casimira file the estate tax return and pay the corresponding estate tax beyond December 19, 2017 without incurring interest and surcharge? Explain your answer.(3%)

XVI.

The BIR assessed the Babuyan Water District (BWD) with deficiency income taxes amounting to P8.5 million, inclusive of interest and surcharge. The BWD disputed the assessment, and argued that it was a wholly-owned government entity performing essential government functions. However, the BIR denied the protest.

The BWD filed a petition for arbitration in the Office of the Secretary of Justice pursuant to Sections 66 to 71, Chapter 14, Book IV of the Administrative Code of 1987 to assail the denial of its protest, and to seek the proper interpretation of Section 32(8)(7)(b) of the Tax Code that excluded from gross income the income derived by the Government or its political subdivisions. The Secretary of Justice rendered a decision declaring the BWD exempt from the payment of income tax.

The Commissioner of Internal Revenue appealed to the CTA on the sole ground that the Secretary of Justice had no jurisdiction to review the assessment of the BIR.

Is the appeal meritorious? Explain your answer. (4%)

XVII.

San Juan University is a non-stock, non-profit educational institution. It owns a piece of land in Caloocan City on which its three 2-storey school buildings stood. Two of the buildings are devoted to classrooms, laboratories, a canteen, a bookstore and administrative offices. The third building is reserved as dormitory for student athletes who are granted scholarships for a given academic year.

In 2017, San Juan University earned income from tuition fees and from leasing a portion of its premises to various concessionaires of food, books, and school supplies.

(a) Can the City Treasurer of Caloocan City collect real property taxes on the land and building of San Juan University? Explain your answer. (5%)

(b) Is the income earned by San Juan University for the year 2017 subject to income tax? Explain your answer. (5%)

XVIII.

(a) Differentiate outright smuggling from technical smuggling. (3%)

(b)Distinguish compromise from abatement of taxes. (3%)

XIX.

CMI School, Inc., a non-stock, non-profit corporation, donated its three parcels of idle land situated in the Municipality of Cuyapo, Nueva Ecija to SLC University, another non-stock, non-profit corporation, in recognition of the latter’s contribution to and participation in the spiritual and educational development of the former.

(a) Is CMI School, Inc. liable for the payment of donor’s tax? Explain your answer. (2.5%)

(b) If SLC University later sells the three parcels of idle land to Puregold Supermarket, Inc., a stock corporation, will SLC University be liable for capital gains tax? Explain your answer. (3%)

(c) If SLC University donates the three parcels of idle land in favor of the Municipality of Cuyapo, Nueva Ecija, will SLC University be liable for donor’s tax? Explain your answer. (2.5%)

-NOTHING FOLLOWS-

2016 BAR EXAMINATIONS
TAXATION LAW
November 13, 2016 2:00 P.M. – 6:00 P.M.
INSTRUCTIONS

1. This Questionnaire contains eight (8) pages. Check the number of pages and make sure it has the correct number of pages and their proper numbers.

All the items have to be answered within four (4) hours. Since there are twenty (20) questions, you have 12 minutes to answer each question, and 6 minutes to answer each sub-question. You may write on the Questionnaire for notes relating to the questions.

Read each question very carefully and write your answers in your Bar Examination Notebook in the same order the questions are posed. Write your answers only on the front of every sheet in your Notebook. If not sufficient, then start with the back page of the first sheet and thereafter. Note well the allocated percentage points for each number, question, or sub-question. In your answers, use the numbering system in the questionnaire.

2. Answer the Essay questions legibly, clearly, and concisely. Start each number on a separate page. An answer to a sub-question under the same number may be written continuously on the same page and the immediately succeeding pages until completed.

Your answer should demonstrate your ability to analyze the facts, apply the pertinent laws and jurisprudence, and arrive at a sound or logical conclusion. Always support your answer with the pertinent laws, rules, jurisprudence, and the facts.

A mere “Yes” or “No” answer without any corresponding explanation or discussion will not be given full credit. Thus, always briefly but fully explain your answers although the question does not expressly ask for an explanation. Do not re-write or repeat the question in your Notebook.

3. Make sure you do not write your name or any extraneous notels or distinctive marking/s on your Notebook that can serve as an identifying mark/s (such as names that are not in the given questions, prayers, or private notes to the Examiner). Writing, leaving, or making any distinguishing or identifying mark in the exam Notebook is considered cheating and can disqualify you.

YOU CAN BRING HOME THE QUESTIONNAIRE.

JUSTICE PRESBITERO J. VELASCO, JR.
Chairman
2016 Bar Examinations

I

Briefly explain the following doctrines: lifeblood doctrine; necessity theory; benefits received principle; and, doctrine of symbiotic relationship. (5%)

II

State at least five (5) cases under the exclusive appellate jurisdiction of the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA). (5%)

ANS: RA 9282

Section 7. Section 7 of the same Act is hereby amended to read as follows:

“Sec. 7. Jurisdiction. – The CTA shall exercise:

“a. Exclusive appellate jurisdiction to review by appeal, as herein provided:

“1. Decisions of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue in cases involving disputed assessments, refunds of internal revenue taxes, fees or other charges, penalties in relation thereto, or other matters arising under the National Internal Revenue or other laws administered by the Bureau of Internal Revenue;

“2. Inaction by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue in cases involving disputed assessments, refunds of internal revenue taxes, fees or other charges, penalties in relations thereto, or other matters arising under the National Internal Revenue Code or other laws administered by the Bureau of Internal Revenue, where the National Internal Revenue Code provides a specific period of action, in which case the inaction shall be deemed a denial;

“3. Decisions, orders or resolutions of the Regional Trial Courts in local tax cases originally decided or resolved by them in the exercise of their original or appellate jurisdiction;

“4. Decisions of the Commissioner of Customs in cases involving liability for customs duties, fees or other money charges, seizure, detention or release of property affected, fines, forfeitures or other penalties in relation thereto, or other matters arising under the Customs Law or other laws administered by the Bureau of Customs;

“5. Decisions of the Central Board of Assessment Appeals in the exercise of its appellate jurisdiction over cases involving the assessment and taxation of real property originally decided by the provincial or city board of assessment appeals;

“6. Decisions of the Secretary of Finance on customs cases elevated to him automatically for review from decisions of the Commissioner of Customs which are adverse to the Government under Section 2315 of the Tariff and Customs Code;

“7. Decisions of the Secretary of Trade and Industry, in the case of nonagricultural product, commodity or article, and the Secretary of Agriculture in the case of agricultural product, commodity or article, involving dumping and countervailing duties under Section 301 and 302, respectively, of the Tariff and Customs Code, and safeguard measures under Republic Act No. 8800, where either party may appeal the decision to impose or not to impose said duties.

III

Rakham operates the lending company that made a loan to Alfonso in the amount of Pl20,000.00 subject of a promissory note which is due within one (1) year from the note’s issuance. Three years after the loan became due and upon information that Alfonso is nowhere to be found, Rakham asks you for advice on how to treat the obligation as “bad debt.” Discuss the requisites for deductibility of a “bad debt?” (5%)

A bad debt is a monetary amount owed to a creditor that is unlikely to be paid and, or which the creditor is not willing to take action to collect because of various reasons, often due to the debtor not having the money to pay, for example due to a company going into liquidation or insolvency

IV

The City of Maharlika passed an ordinance imposing a tax on any sale or transfer of real property located within the city at a rate of fifty percent (50%) of one percent (1%) of the total consideration of the transaction. Jose sold a parcel of land in the city, which he inherited from his deceased parents, and refused to pay the aforesaid tax. He instead filed a case asking that the ordinance be declared null and void since the tax it imposed can only be collected by the national government, as in fact he has paid the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) the required capital gains tax. If you were the City Legal Officer of Maharlika, what defenses would you raise to sustain the validity of the ordinance? (5%)

V

Sure Arrival Airways (SAA) is a foreign corporation, organized under the laws of the Republic of Nigeria. Its commercial airplanes do not operate within Philippine territory, or service passengers embarking from Philippine airports. The firm is represented in the Philippines by its general agent, Narotel.

SAA sells airplane tickets through Narotel, and these tickets are serviced by SAA airplanes outside the Philippines. The total sales of airplane tickets transacted by Narotel for SAA in 2012 amounted to Pl0,000,000.00. The Commissioner of Internal Revenue (CIR) assessed SAA deficiency income taxes at the rate of 30% on its taxable income, finding that SAA’s airline ticket sales constituted income derived from sources within the Philippines.

SAA filed a protest on the ground that the alleged deficiency income taxes should be considered as income derived exclusively from sources outside the Philippines since SAA only serviced passengers outside Philippine territory. It, thus, asserted that the imposition of such income taxes violated the principle of territoriality in taxation.

Is the theory of SAA tenable? Explain. (5%)

VI

Mapagbigay Corporation grants all its employees (rank and file, supervisors, and managers) 5% discount of the purchase price of its products. During an audit investigation, the BIR assessed the company the corresponding tax on the amount equivalent to the courtesy discount received by all the employees, contending that the courtesy discount is considered as additional compensation for the rank and file employees and additional fringe benefit for the supervisors and managers. In its defense, the company argues that the discount given to the rank and file employees is a de minimis benefit and not subject to tax. As to its managerial employees, it contends that the discount is nothing more than a privilege and its availment is restricted.

Is the BIR assessment correct? Explain. (5%)

VII

Philippine National Railways (PNR) operates the rail transport of passengers and goods by providing train stations and freight customer facilities from Tutuban, Manila to the Bicol Province. As the operator of the railroad transit, PNR administers the land, improvements and equipment within its main station in Tutuban, Manila.

Invoking Section 193 of the Local Government Code (LGC) expressly withdrawing the tax exemption privileges of government-owned and controlled corporations upon the effectivity of the Code in 1992, the City Government of Manila issued Final Notices of Real Estate Tax Deficiency in the amount of P624,000,000.00 for the taxable years 2006 to 2010. On the other hand, PNR, seeking refuge under the principle that the government cannot tax itself, insisted that the PNR lands and buildings are owned by the Republic.

Is the PNR exempt from real property tax? Explain your answer. (5%)

VIII

In 2011, Solar Computer Corporation (Solar) purchased a proprietary membership share covered by Membership Certificate No. 8 from the Mabuhay Golf Club, Inc. for P500,000.00. On December 27, 2012, it transferred the same to David, its American consultant, to enable him to avail of the facilities of the Club. David executed a Deed of Declaration of Trust and Assignment of Shares wherein he acknowledged the absolute ownership of Solar over the share; that the assignment was without any consideration; and that the share was placed in his name because the Club required it to be done. In 2013, the value of the share increased to P800,000.00.

Is the said assignment a “gift” and, therefore, subject to gift tax? Explain. (5%)

IX

[a] Explain the procedure for claiming refunds or tax credits of input Value Added Tax (VAT) for zero-rated or effectively zero-rated sales under Sec. 112 of the National Internal Revenue Code (NIRC) from the filing of an application with the CIR up to the CTA. (2.5%)

[b] Explain the procedure for claiming refunds of tax erroneously or illegally collected under Sec. 229 of the NIRC from the filing of the claim for refunds with the CIR up to the CTA. (2.5%)

X

Congress issued a law allowing a 20% discount on the purchases of senior citizens from, among others, recreation centers. This 20% discount can then be used by the sellers as a “tax credit.” At the initiative of BIR, however, Republic Act No. (RA) 9257 was enacted amending the treatment of the 20% discount as a “tax deduction.” Equity Cinema filed a petition with the RTC claiming that RA 9257 is unconstitutional as it forcibly deprives sellers a part of the price without just compensation.

[a] What is the effect of converting the 20% discount from a “tax credit” to a “tax deduction”? (2.5%)

[b] If you are the judge, how will you decide the case? Briefly explain your answer. (2.5%)

XI

Soaring Eagle paid its excise tax liabilities with Tax Credit Certificates (TCCs) which it purchased through the One Stop Shop Inter-Agency Tax Credit Center (Center) of the Department of Finance. The Center is a composite body of the DOF, BIR, BOC and the BOI. The TCCs ~ere accepted by the BIR as payments. A year after, the BIR demanded the payment of alleged deficiency excise taxes on the ground that Soaring Eagle is not a qualified transferee of the TCCs it purchased from other BOI-registered companies. The BIR argued that the TCCs are subject to post-audit as a suspensive condition. On the other hand, Soaring Eagle countered that it is a buyer in good faith and for value who merely relied on the Center’s representation of the genuineness and validity of the TCCs. If it is ordered to pay the deficiency, Soaring Eagle claims the same is confiscatory and a violation of due process. Is the assessment against Soaring Eagle valid? Explain. (5%)

XII

The Philippine-British Association, Inc. (Association) is a non-stock, non-profit organization which owns the St. Michael’s Hospital (Hospital). Sec. 216 in relation to Sec. 215 of the LGC classifies all lands, buildings and other improvements thereon actually, directly, and exclusively used for hospitals as “special.” A special classification prescribes a lower assessment than a commercial classification.

Within the premises of the Hospital, the Association constructed the St. Michael’s Medical Arts Center (Center) which will house medical practitioners who will lease the spaces therein for their clinics at prescribed rental rates. The doctors who treat the patients confined in the Hospital are accredited by the Association.

The City Assessor classified the Center as “commercial” instead of “special” on the ground that the Hospital owner gets income from the lease of its spaces to doctors who also entertain out-patients. Is the City Assessor correct in classifying the Center as “commercial?” Explain. (5%)

XIII

Pursuant to Sec. 11 of the “Host Agreement” between the United Nations and the Philippine government, it was provided that the World Health Organization (WHO), “its assets, income and other properties shall be : a) exempt from all direct and indirect taxes.” Precision Construction Corporation (PCC) was hired to construct the WHO Medical Center in Manila. Upon completion of the building, the BIR assessed a 12% VAT on the gross receipts of PCC derived from the construction of the WHO building. The BIR contends that the 12% VAT is not a direct nor an indirect tax on the WHO but a tax that is primarily due from the contractor and is therefore not covered by the Host Agreement. The WHO argues that the VAT is deemed an indirect tax as PCC can shift the tax burden to it. Is the BIR correct? Explain. (5%)

XIV

Lucky V Corporation (Lucky) owns a IO-storey building on a 2,000 square meter lot in the City of Makati. It sold the lot and building to Rainier. for P80 million. One month after, Rainier sold the lot and building to Healthy Smoke Company (HSC) for P200 million. Lucky filed its annual tax return and declared its gain from the sale of the lot and building in the amount of P750,000.00.

An investigation conducted by the BIR revealed that two months prior to the sale of the properties to Rainier, Lucky received P40 million from HSC and not from Rainier. Said amount of P40 million was debited by HSC and reflected in its trial balance as “other inv. – Lucky Bldg.” The month after, another P40 million was reflected in HSC’s trial balance as “other inv. – Lucky Bldg.” The BIR concluded that there is tax evasion since the real buyer of the properties of Lucky is HSC and not Rainier. It issued an assessment for deficiency income tax in the amount of P79 million against Lucky. Lucky argues that it resorted to tax avoidance or a tax saving device, which is allowed by the NIRC and BIR rules since it paid the correct taxes based on its sale to Rainier. On the other hand, Rainier and HSC also paid the prescribed taxes arising from the sale by Rainier to HSC. Is the BIR correct in assessing taxes on Lucky? Explain. (5%)

XV

Peter is the Vice-President for Sales of Golden Dragon Realty Conglomerate, Inc. (Golden Dragon). A group of five (5) foreign investors visited the country for possible investment in the condominium units and subdivision lots of Golden Dragon. After a tour of the properties for sale, the investors were wined and dined by Peter at the posh Conrad’s Hotel at the cost of Pl 50,000.00. Afterward, the investors were brought to a party in a videoke club which cost the company P200,000.00 for food and drinks, and the amount of P80,000.00 as tips for business promotion officers. Expenses at Conrad’s Hotel and the videoke club were receipted and submitted to support the deduction for representation and entertainment expenses. Decide if all the representation and entertainment expenses claimed by Golden Dragon are deductible. Explain. (5%)

XVI

Amor Powers, Inc. (API) is a domestic corporation registered with the BIR as a value-added taxpayer. API incurred excess input VAT in the amount of P500,000,000.00 on August 3, 2008. Hence, it filed with the BIR an administrative claim for the refund or credit of these input taxes on August 15, 2010. Without waiting for the CIR to act on its claim, API filed a Petition for Review with the CT A on September 15, 2010 before the lapse of two years after the close of the taxable quarter concerned.

In its Comment on the Petition, the CIR argues that API’s Petition should be dismissed as it was filed before the lapse of the 120-day period given to the CIR by Sec. 112(D) of the NIRC, which became effective on January 1, 1998. For the CIR, the 120- day period is mandatory and jurisdictional so that any suit filed before its expiration is premature and, therefore, dismissible.

API, on the other hand, invokes BIR Ruling No. DA-489-03 issued by the CIR on December 10, 2003 in answer to a query posed by the Department of Finance regarding the propriety of the actions taken by Lazi Bay Resources Development, Inc., which filed an administrative claim for refund with the CIR and, before the lapse of the 120-day period from its filing, filed a judicial claim with the CTA. BIR Ruling No. DA-489-03 stated that the taxpayer-claimant need not wait for the lapse of the 120-day period before it could seek judicial relief with the CTA.

Will API’s Petition for Review prosper? Decide with reasons. (5%)

XVII

The requisites for a valid waiver of the three-year (3-year) prescriptive period for the BIR to assess taxes due in the taxable year are prescribed by Revenue Memorandum Order (RMO) No. 20-90:

1. The waiver must be in the proper form prescribed by RMO 20-90.

2. The waiver must be signed by the taxpayer himself or his duly authorized representative. In the case of a corporation, the waiver must be signed by any of its responsible officials. In case the authority is delegated by the taxpayer to a representative, such delegation should be in writing and duly notarized.

3. The waiver should be duly notarized.

4. The CIR or the revenue official authorized by him must sign the waiver indicating that the BIR has accepted and agreed to the waiver. The date of such acceptance by the BIR should be indicated. However, before signing the waiver, the CIR or the revenue official authorized by him must make sure that the waiver is in the prescribed form, duly notarized, and executed by the taxpayer or his duly authorized representative.

5. Both the date of execution by the taxpayer and date of acceptance by the Bureau should be before the expiration of the period of prescription or before the lapse of the period agreed upon in case a subsequent agreement is executed.

6. The waiver must be executed in three copies, the original copy to be attached to the docket of the case, the second copy for the taxpayer and the third copy for the Office accepting the waiver. The fact of receipt by the taxpayer of his/her file copy must be indicated in the original copy to show that the taxpayer was notified of the acceptance of the BIR and the perfection of the agreement.

After being assessed by the BIR with alleged deficiency income taxes, VVV Corporation (VVV) through Enrique, its President, executed a waiver of the prescriptive period. The waiver was signed by Revenue District Officer (RDO) Alfredo. However, the waiver did not state the date of execution by the taxpayer and date of acceptance by the BIR. Enrique was also not furnished a copy of the waiver by the BIR.

VVV claims that the waiver is void due to non-compliance with RMO 20-90. Hence, the period for assessment had already prescribed. Moreover, since the assessment involves P2 million, the waiver should have been signed by the CIR and instead of a mere RDO. On the other hand, the BIR contends that the requirements ofRMO No. 20-90 are merely directory; that the execution of the waiver by VVV was a renunciation of its right to invoke prescription and that the government cannot be estopped by the mistakes committed by its revenue officers. Is VVV liable? Explain. (5%)

XVIII

Henry, a U.S. naturalized citizen, went home to the Philippines to reacquire Philippine citizenship under RA 9225. His mother left him a lot and building in Makati City and he wants to make use of it in his trading business. Considering that he needs money for the business, he wants to sell his lot and building and make use of the consideration. However, the lot has sentimental value and he wants to reacquire it in the future. A friend of Henry told him of the “sale-leaseback transaction” commonly used in the U.S., which is also used for tax reduction. Under said transaction, the lot owner sells his property to a buyer on the condition that he leases it back from the buyer. At the same time, the property owner is granted an option to repurchase the lot on or before an agreed date. Henry approaches you as a tax lawyer for advice.

Explain what tax benefits, if any, can be obtained by Henry and the buyer from the sale-leaseback transaction? (5%)

XIX

Jennifer is the only daughter of Janina who was a resident in Los Angeles, California, U.S.A. Janina died in the U.S. leaving to Jennifer one million shares of Sun Life (Philippines), Inc., a corporation organized and existing under the laws of the Republic of the Philippines. Said shares were held in trust for Janina by the Corporate Secretary of Sun Life and the latter can vote the shares and receive dividends for Janina. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) of the U.S. taxed the shares on the ground that Janina was domiciled in the U.S. at the time of her death.

[a] Can the CIR of the Philippines also tax the same shares? Explain. (2.5%)

[b] Explain the concept of double taxation. (2.5%)

XX

Patrick is a successful businessman in the United States and he is a sole proprietor of a supermarket which has a gross sales of $10 million and an annual income of $3 million. He went to the Philippines on a visit and, in a party, he saw Atty. Agaton who boasts of being a tax expert. Patrick asks Atty. Agaton: if he (Patrick) decides to reacquire his Philippine citizenship under RA 9225, establish residence in this country, and open a supermarket in Makati City, will the BIR tax him on the income he earns from his U.S. business? If you were Atty. Agaton, what advice will you give Patrick? (5%)

-END-

2015 BAR EXAMINATIONS
TAXATION LAW
November 15, 2015 2:00 P.M. – 6:00 P.M.
INSTRUCTIONS

1. This Questionnaire contains eight (8) pages including these Instructions pages. Check the number of pages and the page numbers at the upper right hand corner of each page of this Questionnaire and make sure it has the correct number of pages and their proper numbers.

There are 22 items (I to XXII) to be answered within four (4) hours.

2. Read each question very carefully and write your answers in your Bar Examination Notebook in the same order the questions are posed. Write your answers only on the front, not the back, page of every sheet in your Notebook. Note well the allocated percentage points for each number, question, or sub-question. In your answers, use the numbering system in the questionnaire.

If the sheets provided in your Examination Notebook are not sufficient for your answers, use the back page of every sheet of your Examination Notebook, starting at the back page of the first sheet and the back of the succeeding sheets thereafter.

3. Answer the Essay questions legibly, clearly, and concisely. Start each number on a separate page. An answer to a sub-question under the same number may be written continuously on the same page and the immediately succeeding pages until completed.

Your answer should demonstrate your ability to analyze the facts presented by the question, to select the material from the immaterial facts, and to discern the points upon which the question turns. It should show your knowledge and understanding of the pertinent principles and theories of law involved and their qualifications and limitations. It should demonstrate your ability to apply the law to the given facts, to reason logically in a lawyer-like manner, and to form a sound conclusion from the given premises.

A mere “Yes” or “No” answer without any corresponding explanation or discussion will not be given any credit. Thus, always briefly but fully explain your answers although the question does not expressly ask for an explanation. At the same time, remember that a complete explanation does not require that you volunteer information or discuss legal doctrines that are not necessary or pertinent to the solution to the problem. You do not need to re-write or repeat the question in your Notebook.

4. Make sure you do not write your name or any extraneous note/s or distinctive marking/s on your Notebook that can serve as an identifying mark/s (such as names that are not in the given questions, prayers, or private notes to the Examiner).

Writing, leaving or making any distinguishing or identifying mark in the exam Notebook is considered cheating and can disqualify you for the Bar examinations.

You can use the questionnaire for notes you may wish/need to write during the examination.

YOU CAN BRING HOME THIS QUESTIONNAIRE OR SUBMIT IT TOGETHER WITH YOUR NOTEBOOK

JUSTICE TERESITA J. LEONARDO-DE CASTRO
Chairperson
2015 Bar Examinations

  1. Explain the principles of a sound tax system. (3%)
  2. Mr. A, a citizen and resident of the Philippines, is a professional boxer. In a professional boxing match held in 2013, he won prize money in United States (US) dollars equivalent to P300,000,000.

a) Is the prize money paid to and received by Mr. A in the US taxable in the Philippines? Why? (2%)

b) May Mr. A’s prize money qualify as an exclusion from his gross income? Why? (2%)

c) The US already imposed and withheld income taxes from Mr. A’s prize money. How may Mr. A use or apply the income taxes he paid on his prize money to the US when he computes his income tax liability in the Philippines for 2013? (4%)

  1. Ms. C, a resident citizen, bought ready-to-wear goods from Ms. B, a nonresident citizen.

a) If the goods were produced from Ms. B’s factory in the Philippines, is Ms. B’s income from the sale to Ms. C taxable in the Philippines? Explain. (2%)

b) If Ms. B is an alien individual and the goods were produced in her factory in China, is Ms. B’s income from the sale of the goods to Ms. C taxable in the Philippines? Explain. (2%)

  1. Mr. E and Ms. F are both employees of AAA Corp. They got married on February 14, 2011. On December 29, 2011, the couple gave birth to triplets. On June 25, 2013, they had twins. What were the personal exemptions/deductions which Mr. E and Ms. F could claim in the following taxable years:

a) For2010 (2%)

b) For 2011 (3%)

c) For 2013 (2%)

  1. BBB, Inc., a domestic corporation, enjoyed a particularly profitable year in 2014. In June 2015, its Board of Directors approved the distribution of cash dividends to its stockholders. BBB, Inc. has individual and corporate stockholders. What is the tax treatment of the cash dividends received from BBB, Inc. by the following stockholders:

a) A resident citizen (1%)

b) Non-resident alien engaged in trade or business (1%)

c) Non-resident alien not engaged in trade or business (1% )

d) Domestic corporation (1%)

e) Non-resident foreign corporation (1%)

  1. Differentiate between double taxation in the strict sense and in a broad sense and give an example of each. (4%)
  2. On May 15, 2013, CCC, Inc. received the Final Decision on Disputed Assessment issued by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue (CIR) dismissing the protest of CCC, Inc. and affirming the assessment against said corporation. On June 10, 2013, CCC, Inc. filed a Petition for Review with the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) in division. On July 31, 2015, CCC, Inc. received a copy of the Decision dated July 22, 2015 of the CT A division dismissing its Petition. CCC, Inc. immediately filed a Petition for Review with the CT A en banc on August 6, 2015. Is the immediate appeal by CCC, Inc. to the CTA en banc of the adverse Decision of the CTA division the proper remedy? (3%)
  3. In June 2013, DDD Corp., a domestic corporation engaged in the business of leasing real properties in the Philippines, entered into a lease agreement of a residential house and lot with EEE, Inc., a non-resident foreign corporation. The residential house and lot will be used by officials of EEE, Inc. during their visit to the Philippines. The lease agreement was signed by representatives from DDD Corp. and EEE, Inc. in Singapore. DDD Corp. did not subject the said lease to VAT believing that it was not a domestic service contract. Was DDD Corp. correct? Explain. (3%)
  4. For calendar year 2011, FFF, Inc., a VAT-registered corporation, reported unutilized excess input VAT in the amount of Pl ,000,000.00 attributable to its zero-rated sales. Hoping to impress his boss, Mr. G, the accountant of FFF, Inc., filed with the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) on January 31, 2013 a claim for tax refund/credit of the Pl,000,000.00 unutilized excess input VAT of FFF, Inc. for 2011. Not having received any communication from the BIR, Mr. G filed a Petition for Review with the CTA on March 15, 2013, praying for the tax refund/credit of the Pl,000,000.00 unutilized excess input VAT of FFF, Inc. for 2011.

a) Did the CTA acquire jurisdiction over the Petition of FFF, Inc.? (2%)

b) Discuss the proper procedure and applicable time periods for administrative and judicial claims for refund/credit of unutilized excess input VAT. (4%)

  1. Indicate whether each of the following individuals is required or not required to file an income tax return:

a) Filipino citizen residing outside the Philippines on his income from sources outside the Philippines. (1%)

b) Resident alien on income derived from sources within the Philippines. (1%)

c) Resident citizen earning purely compensation income from two employers within the Philippines, whose income taxes have been correctly withheld. (1%)

d) Resident citizen who falls under the classification of minimum wage earners. (1%)

e) An individual whose sole income has been subjected to final withholding tax. (1%)

  1. What are de minim is benefits and how are these taxed? Give three (3) examples of de minimis benefits. (4%)
  2. Mr. H decided to sell the house and lot wherein he and his family have lived for the past 10 years, hoping to buy and move to a new house and lot closer to his children’s school. Concerned about the capital gains tax that will be due on the sale of their house, Mr. H approaches you as a friend for advice if it is possible for the sale of their house to be exempted from capital gains tax and the conditions they must comply with to avail themselves of said exemption. How will you respond? (4%)
  3. GGG, Inc. offered to sell through competitive bidding its shares in HHH Corp., equivalent to 40% of the total outstanding capital stock of the latter. JJJ, Inc. acquired the said shares in HHH Corp. as the highest bidder. Before it could secure a certificate authorizing registration/tax clearance for the transfer of the shares of stock to JJJ, Inc., GGG, Inc. had to request a ruling from the BIR confirming that its sale of the said shares was at fair market value and was thus not subject to donor’s tax. In BIR Ruling No. 012-14, the CIR held that the selling price for the shares of stock of HHH Corp. was lower than their book value, so the difference between the selling price and the book value of said shares was a taxable donation. GGG, Inc. requested the Secretary of Finance to review BIR Ruling No. 012-14, but the Secretary affirmed said ruling. GGG, Inc. filed with the Court of Appeals a Petition for Review under Rule 43 of the Revised Rules of Court. The Court of Appeals, however, dismissed the Petition for lack of jurisdiction declaring that it is the CTA which has jurisdiction over the issues raised. Before which Court should GGG, Inc. seek recourse from the adverse ruling of the Secretary of Finance in the exercise of the latter’s power of review? (3%)
  4. KKK Corp. secured its Certificate of Incorporation from the Securities and Exchange Commission on June 3, 2013. It commenced business operations on August 12, 2013. In April 2014, Ms. J, an employee of KKK Corp. in charge of preparing the annual income tax return of the corporation for 2013, got confused on whether she should prepare payment for the regular corporate income tax or the minimum corporate income tax.

a) As Ms. J’s supervisor, what will be your advice? (2%)

b) What are the distinctions between regular corporate income tax and minimum corporate income tax? (3%)

  1. In 2012, Dr. K decided to return to his hometown to start his own practice. At the end of 2012, Dr. K found that he earned gross professional income in the amount of P1,000,000.00; while he incurred expenses amounting to P560,000.00 constituting mostly of his office space rent, utilities, and miscellaneous expenses related to his medical practice. However, to Dr. K’s dismay, only P320,000.00 of his expenses were duly covered by receipts. What are the options available for Dr. K so he could maximize the deductions from his gross income? (3%)
  2. LLL is a government instrumentality created by Executive Order to be primarily responsible for integrating and directing all reclamation projects for the National Government. It was not organized as a stock or a non-stock corporation, nor was it intended to operate commercially and compete in the private market.

By virtue of its mandate, LLL reclaimed several portions of the foreshore and offshore areas of the Manila Bay, some of which were within the territorial jurisdiction of Q City. Certificates of title to the reclaimed properties in Q City were issued in the name of LLL in 2008. In 2014, Q City issued Warrants of Levy on said reclaimed properties of LLL based on the assessment for delinquent property taxes for the years 2010 to 2013.

a. Are the reclaimed properties registered in the name of LLL subject to real property tax? (4 % )

b. Will your answer be the same in (a) if from 2010 to the present time, LLL is leasing portions of the reclaimed properties for the establishment and use of popular fastfood restaurants J Burgers, G Pizza, and K Chicken? (2%)

  1. Mr. L owned several parcels of land and he donated a parcel each to his two children. Mr. L acquired both parcels of land in 1975 for ll200,000.00. At the time of donation, the fair market value of the two parcels of land, as determined by the CIR, was 112,300,000.00; while the fair market value of the same properties as shown in the schedule of values prepared by the City Assessors was 112,500,000.00. What is the proper valuation of Mr. L’s gifts to his children for purposes of computing donor’s tax? (3%)
  2. Under the Tariff and Customs Code, as amended:

a. When does importation begin and when is it deemed terminated? (2%)

b. In what easels is the decision of the Collector automatically reviewed by the Commissioner of Customs? In what instance/s is the decision of the Commissioner automatically appealed to the Secretary of Finance? (4%)

  1. In 2014, M City approved an ordinance levying customs duties and fees on goods coming into the territorial jurisdiction of the city. Said city ordinance was duly published on February 15, 2014 with effectivity date on March 1, 2014.

a. Is there a ground for opposing said ordinance? (2%)

b. What is the proper procedural remedy and applicable time periods for challenging the ordinance? (4%)

  1. After filing an Information for violation of Section 254 of the National Internal Revenue Code (Attempt to Evade or Defeat Tax) with the CTA, the Public Prosecutor manifested that the People is reserving the right to file the corresponding civil action for the recovery of the civil liability for taxes. As counsel for the accused, comment on the People’s manifestation. (3%)
  2. MMM, Inc., a domestic telecommunications company, handles incoming telecommunications services for non-resident foreign companies by relaying international calls within the Philippines. To broaden the coverage of its telecommunications services throughout the country, MMM, Inc. entered into various interconnection agreements with local carriers. The non-resident foreign corporations pay MMM, Inc. in US dollars inwardly remitted through Philippine banks, in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.

MMM, Inc. filed its Quarterly VAT Returns for 2000. Subsequently, MMM, Inc. timely filed with the BIR an administrative claim for the refund of the amount of P6,321,486.50, representing excess input VAT attributable to its effectively zero-rated sales in 2000. The BIR ruled to deny the claim for refund of MMM, Inc. because the VAT official receipts submitted by MMM, Inc. to substantiate said claim did not bear the words “zero-rated” as required under Section 4.108-1 of Revenue Regulations (RR) No. 7-95. On appeal, the CTA division and the CT A en bane affirmed the BIR ruling.

MMM, Inc. appealed to the Supreme Court arguing that the NIRC itself did not provide for such a requirement. RR No. 7-95 should not prevail over a taxpayer’s substantive right to claim tax refund or credit.

a. Rule on the appeal of MMM, Inc. (3%)

b. Will your answer in (a) be any different if MMM, Inc. was claiming refund of excess input VAT attributable to its effectively zero-rated sales in 2012? (2%)

  1. State the conditions for allowing the following as deductions from the gross estate of a citizen or resident alien for the purpose of imposing estate tax:

a. Claims against the estate (2%)

b. Medical expenses (2%)

—ooo0ooo—

 

2014 BAR EXAMINATIONS
TAXATION LAW
October 12, 2014 2:00 P.M.- 6:00 P.M.
INSTRUCTIONS

1. This Questionnaire contains THIRTEEN (13) pages including these Instructions pages. Check the number of pages and the page numbers at the upper right hand corner of each page of this Questionnaire and make sure it has the correct number of pages and their proper numbers.

There are TWENTY-NINE (29) Essay and Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs) to be answered within four (4) hours.

The essay portion contains questions that are equivalent to not less than 80% of the whole examination, while the MCQ portion contains questions equivalent to not more than 20%.

2. Read each question very carefully and write your answers in your Bar Examination Notebook in the same order the questions are posed. Write your answers only on the front, not the back, page of every sheet in your Notebook. Note well the allocated percentage points for each number, question, or sub-question. In your answers, use the numbering system in the questionnaire.

If the sheets provided in your Examination Notebook are not sufficient for your answers, use the back page of every sheet of your Examination Notebook, starting at the back page of the first sheet and the back of the succeeding sheets thereafter.

3. Answer the Essay questions legibly, clearly, and concisely. Start each number on a separate page. An answer to a sub-question under the same number may be written continuously on the same page and the immediately succeeding pages until completed.

Your answer should demonstrate your ability to analyze the facts presented by the question, to select the material from the immaterial facts, and to discern the points upon which the question turns. It should show your knowledge and understanding of the pertinent principles and theories of law involved and their qualifications and limitations. It should demonstrate your ability to apply the law to the given facts, and to reason logically in a lawyer-like manner to a sound conclusion from the given premises.

A mere “Yes” or “No” answer without any corresponding explanation or discussion will not be given any credit. Thus, always briefly but fully explain your answers although the question does not expressly ask for an explanation. At the same time, remember that a complete explanation does not require that you volunteer information or discuss legal doctrines that are not necessary or pertinent to the solution to the problem. You do not need to re-write or repeat the question in your Notebook.

4. MCQs are to be answered by writing in your Notebook the capital letter A, B, C, D, or E corresponding to your chosen answer. There is only one correct answer to every MCQ; choose the BEST answer from among the offered choices. Note that some MCQs may need careful analysis both of the questions and the choices offered.

5. Make sure you do not write your name or any extraneous note/s or distinctive marking/s on your Notebook that can serve as an identifying mark/s (such as names that are not in the given questions, prayers, or private notes to the Examiner).

Writing, leaving or making any distinguishing or identifying mark in the exam Notebook is considered cheating and can disqualify you for the Bar examinations.

You can use the questionnaire for notes you may wish/need to write during the examination.

YOU CAN BRING HOME THIS QUESTIONNAIRE OR HAND IT TOGETHER WITH YOUR NOTEBOOK

J. DIOSDADO M. PERALTA
Chairman
2014 Bar Examinations

I.

On March 27, 2012, the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) issued a notice of assessment against Blue Water Industries Inc. (BWI), a domestic corporation, informing the latter of its alleged deficiency corporate income tax for the year 2009. On April 20, 2012, BWI filed a letter protest before the BIR contesting said assessment and demanding that the same be cancelled or set aside.

However, on May 19, 2013, that is, after more than a year from the filing of the letter protest, the BIR informed BWI that the latter’s letter protest was denied on the ground that the assessment had already become final, executory and demandable. The BIR reasoned that its failure to decide the case within 180 days from filing of the letter protest should have prompted BWI to seek recourse before the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) by filing a petition for review within thirty (30) days after the expiration of the 180-day period as mandated by the provisions of the last paragraph of Section 228 of the National Internal Revenue Code (NIRC). Accordingly, BWI’s failure to file a petition for review before the CTA rendered the assessment final, executory and demandable. Is the contention of the BIR correct? Explain. (5%)

II.

Mr. De Sarapen is a candidate in the upcoming Senatorial elections. Mr. De Almacen, believing in the sincerity and ability of Mr. De Sarapen to introduce much needed reforms in the country, contributed P500,000.00 in cash to the campaign chest of Mr. De Sarapen. In addition, Mr. De Almacen purchased tarpaulins, t-shirts, umbrellas, caps and other campaign materials that he also donated to Mr. De Sarapen for use in his campaign. Is the contribution of cash and campaign materials subject to donor’s tax? (4%)

III.

Dr. Taimtim is an alumnus of the College of Medicine of Universal University (UU), a privately-owned center for learning which grants yearly dividends to its stockholders.

UU has a famous chapel located within the campus where the old folks used to say that anyone who wanted to pass the medical board examinations should offer a dozen roses on all the Sundays of October. This was what Dr. Taimtim did when he was still reviewing for the board examinations. In his case, the folk saying proved to be true because he is now a successful cardiologist. Wanting to give back to the chapel and help defray the costs of its maintenance, Dr. Taimtim donated P50,000.00 to the caretakers of the chapel which was evidenced by an acknowledgment receipt.

In computing his net taxable income, can Dr.Taimtim use his donation to the chapel as an allowable deduction from his gross income under the National Internal Revenue Code (NIRC)? (4%)

IV.

Gangwam Corporation (GC) filed its quarterly tax returns for the calendar year 2012 as follows:

First quarter – April 25, 2012

Second quarter – July 23, 2012

Third quarter – October 25, 2012

Fourth quarter – January 27, 2013

On December 22, 2013, GC filed with the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) an administrative claim for refund of its unutilized input Value-Added Tax (VAT) for the calendar year 2012. After several months of inaction by the BIR on its claim for refund, GC decided to elevate its claim directly to the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) on April 22, 2014.

In due time, the CTA denied the tax refund relative to the input VAT of GC for the first quarter of 2012, reasoning that the claim was filed beyond the two-year period prescribed under Section 112(A) of the National Internal Revenue Code (NIRC).

(A) Is the CTA correct? (3%)

(B) Assuming that GC filed its claim before the CTA on February 22, 2014, would your answer be the same? (3%)

V.

The City of Liwliwa assessed local business taxes against Talin Company. Claiming that there is double taxation, Talin Company filed a Complaint for Refund or Recovery of Illegally and/or Erroneously-collected Local Business Tax; Prohibition with Prayer to Issue Temporary Restraining Order and Writ of Preliminary Injunction with the Regional Trial Court (RTC). The RTC denied the application for a Writ of Preliminary Injunction. Since its motion for reconsideration was denied, Talin Company filed a special civil action for certiorari with the Court of Appeals (CA). The government lawyer representing the City of Liwliwa prayed for the dismissal of the petition on the ground that the same should have been filed with the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA). Talin Company, through its lawyer, Atty. Frank, countered that the CTA cannot entertain a petition for certiorari since it is not one of its powers and authorities under existing laws and rules.

Decide. (5%)

VI.

Choose the correct answer. Smuggling – (1%)

(A) does not extend to the entry of imported or exported articles by means of any false or fraudulent invoice, statement or practices; the entry of goods at less than the true weight or measure; or the filing of any false or fraudulent entry for the payment of drawback or refund of duties.

(B) is limited to the import of contraband or highly dutiable cargo beyond the reach of customs authorities.

(C) is committed by any person who shall fraudulently import or bring into the Philippines, or assist in so doing, any article, contrary to law, or shall receive, conceal, buy, sell or any manner facilitate the transportation, concealment or sale of such article after importation, knowing the same to have been imported contrary to law.

VII.

In accordance with the Local Government Code (LGC), the Sangguniang Panglungsod (SP) of Baguio City enacted Tax Ordinance No. 19, Series of 2014, imposing a P50.00 tax on all the tourists and travellers going to Baguio City. In imposing the local tax, the SP reasoned that the tax collected will be used to maintain the cleanliness of Baguio City and for the beautification of its tourist attractions. (D) is punishable by administrative penalty only.

Claiming the tax to be unjust, Baguio Travellers Association (BTA), an association of travel agencies in Baguio City, filed a petition for declaratory relief before the Regional Trial Court (RTC) because BTA was apprehensive that tourists might cancel their bookings with BTA’s member agencies. BTA also prayed for the issuance of a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) to enjoin Baguio City from enforcing the local tax on their customers and on all tourists going to Baguio City.

The RTC issued a TRO enjoining Baguio City from imposing the local tax. Aggrieved, Baguio City filed a petition for certiorari before the Supreme Court (SC) seeking to set aside the TRO issued by the RTC on the ground that collection of taxes cannot be enjoined. Will the petition prosper? (5%)

VIII.

Masarap Kumain, Inc. (MKI) is a Value-Added Tax (VAT)-registered company which has been engaged in the catering business for the past 10 years. It has invested a substantial portion of its capital on flat wares, table linens, plates, chairs, catering equipment, and delivery vans. MKI sold its first delivery van, already 10 years old and idle, to Magpapala Gravel and Sand Corp. (MGSC), a corporation engaged in the business of buying and selling gravel and sand. The selling price of the delivery van was way below its acquisition cost. Is the sale of the delivery van by MKI to MGSC subject to VAT? (4%)

IX.

Mr. Gipit borrowed from Mr. Maunawain P100,000.00, payable in five (5) equal monthly installments. Before the first installment became due, Mr. Gipit rendered general cleaning services in the entire office building of Mr. Maunawain, and as compensation therefor, Mr. Maunawain cancelled the indebtedness of Mr. Gipit up to the amount of P75,000.00. Mr. Gipit claims that the cancellation of his indebtedness cannot be considered as gain on his part which must be subject to income tax, because according to him, he did not actually receive payment from Mr. Maunawain for the general cleaning services. Is Mr. Gipit correct? Explain. (4%)

X.

Which of the following is an exclusion from gross income? (1%)

(A) Salaries and wages

(B) Cash dividends

(C) Liquidating dividends after dissolution of a corporation

(D) De minimis benefits

(E) Embezzled money

XI.

Triple Star, a domestic corporation, entered into a Management Service Contract with Single Star, a non-resident foreign corporation with no property in the Philippines. Under the contract, Single Star shall provide managerial services for Triple Star’s Hongkong branch. All said services shall be performed in Hongkong.

Is the compensation for the services of Single Star taxable as income from sources within the Philippines? Explain. (4%)

XII.

Which of the following should not be claimed as deductions from gross income? (1%)

(A) discounts given to senior citizens on certain goods and services.

(B) advertising expense to maintain some form of goodwill for the taxpayer’s business.

(C) salaries and bonuses paid to employees.

(D) interest payment on loans for the purchase of machinery and equipment used in business.

XIII.

Hopeful Corporation obtained a loan from Generous Bank and executed a mortgage on its real property to secure the loan. When Hopeful Corporation failed to pay the loan, Generous Bank extrajudicially foreclosed the mortgage on the property and acquired the same as the highest bidder. A month after the foreclosure, Hopeful Corporation exercised its right of redemption and was able to redeem the property. Is Generous Bank liable to pay capital gains tax as a result of the foreclosure sale? Explain. (4%)

XIV.

Mr. X, a Filipino residing in Alabama, U.S.A., died on January 2, 2013 after undergoing a major heart surgery. He left behind to his wife and two (2) kids several properties, to wit: (4%)

(1) Family home in Makati City;

(2) Condominium unit in Las Piñas City;

(3) Proceeds of health insurance from Take Care, a health maintenance organization in the Philippines; and

(4) Land in Alabama, U.S.A.

The following expenses were paid:

(1) Funeral expenses;

(2) Medical expenses; and

(3) Judicial expenses in the testate proceedings.

(A) What are the items that must be considered as part of the gross estate income of Mr. X?

(B) What are the items that may be considered as deductions from the gross estate?

XV.

When is a pre-assessment notice required under the following cases? (1%)

(A) When the finding for any deficiency tax is the result of mathematical error in the computation of the tax as appearing on the face of the return.

(B) When a discrepancy has been determined between the tax withheld and the amount actually remitted by the withholding agent.

(C) When the excise tax due on excisable articles has been paid.

(D) When an article locally purchased or imported by an exempt person, such as, but not limited to vehicles, capital equipment, machineries and spare parts, has been sold, traded or transferred to non-exempt persons.

XVI.

Mr. Tiaga has been a law-abiding citizen diligently paying his income taxes. On May 5, 2014, he was surprised to receive an assessment notice from the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) informing him of a deficiency tax assessment as a result of a mathematical error in the computation of his income tax, as appearing on the face of his income tax return for the year 2011, which he filed on April 15, 2012. Mr. Tiaga believes that there was no such error in the computation of his income tax for the year 2011. Based on the assessment received by Mr. Tiaga, may he already file a protest thereon? (4%)

XVII.

In a civil case for Annulment of Contract of Sale, plaintiff Ma. Reklamo presented in evidence the Contract of Sale which she sought to be annulled. No documentary stamp tax on the Contract of Sale was paid because according to plaintiff Ma. Reklamo, there was no need to pay the same since the sale was not registered with the Register of Deeds. Plaintiff Ma. Reklamo is now offering the Contract of Sale as her evidence. Is the Contract of Sale admissible? (4%)

XVIII.

Madam X owns real property in Caloocan City. On July 1, 2014, she received a notice of assessment from the City Assessor, informing her of a deficiency tax on her property. She wants to contest the assessment. (4%)

(A) What are the administrative remedies available to Madam X in order to contest the assessment and their respective prescriptive periods?

(B) May Madam X refuse to pay the deficiency tax assessment during the pendency of her appeal?

XIX.

The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) issued Revenue Memorandum Circular (RMC) No. 65-2012 imposing Value-Added Tax (VAT) on association dues and membership fees collected by condominium corporations from its member condominium-unit owners. The RMC’s validity is challenged before the Supreme Court (SC) by the condominium corporations.

The Solicitor General, counsel for BIR, claims that association dues, membership fees, and other assessment/charges collected by a condominium corporation are subject to VAT since they constitute income payments or compensation for the beneficial services it provides to its members and tenants.

On the other hand, the lawyer of the condominium corporations argues that such dues and fees are merely held in trust by the condominium corporations exclusively for their members and used solely for administrative expenses in implementing the condominium corporations’ purposes. Accordingly, the condominium corporations do not actually render services for a fee subject to VAT.

Whose argument is correct? Decide. (5%)

XX.

During his lifetime, Mr. Sakitin obtained a loan amounting to P10 million from Bangko Uno for the purchase of a parcel of land located in Makati City, using such property as collateral for the loan. The loan was evidenced by a duly notarized promissory note. Subsequently, Mr. Sakitin died. At the time of his death, the unpaid balance of the loan amounted to P2 million. The heirs of Mr. Sakitin deducted the amount of P2 million from the gross estate, as part of the “Claims against the Estate.” Such deduction was disallowed by the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Examiner, claiming that the mortgaged property was not included in the computation of the gross estate. Do you agree with the BIR? Explain. (4%)

XXI.

On August 31, 2014, Haelton Corporation (HC), thru its authorized representative Ms. Pares, sold a 16-storey commercial building known as Haeltown Building to Mr. Belly for P100 million. Mr. Belly, in turn, sold the same property on the same day to Bell Gates, Inc. (BGI) for P200 million. These two (2) transactions were evidenced by two (2) separate Deeds of Absolute Sale notarized on the same day by the same notary public.

Investigations by the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) showed that:

(1) the Deed of Absolute Sale between Mr. Belly and BGI was notarized ahead of the sale between HC and Mr. Belly; (2) as early as May 17, 2014, HC received P40 million from BGI, and not from Mr. Belly; (3) the said payment of P40 million was recorded by BGI in its books as of June 30, 2014 as investment in Haeltown Building; and (4) the substantial portion of P40 million was withdrawn by Ms. Pares through the declaration of cash dividends to all its stockholders.

Based on the foregoing, the BIR sent Haeltown Corporation a Notice of Assessment for deficiency income tax arising from an alleged simulated sale of the aforesaid commercial building to escape the higher corporate income tax rate of thirty percent (30%). What is the liability of Haeltown Corporation, if any? (4%)

XXII.

Choose the correct answer. Double Taxation – (1%)

(A) is one of direct duplicate taxations wherein two (2) taxes must be imposed on the same subject matter, by the same taxing authority, within the same jurisdiction, during the same period, with the same kind or character of tax, even if the purposes of imposing the same are different.

(B) is forbidden by law; and therefore, it is a valid defense against the validity of a tax measure.

(C) means taxing the same property twice when it should be taxed only once; it is tantamount to taxing the same person twice by the same jurisdiction for the same thing.

(D) exists when a corporation is assessed with local business tax as a manufacturer, and at the same time, value-added tax as a person selling goods in the course of trade or business.

XXIII.

Choose the correct answer. Tax Avoidance ‒ (1%)

(A) is a scheme used outside of those lawful means and, when availed of, it usually subjects the taxpayer to further or additional civil or criminal liabilities.

(B) is a tax saving device within the means sanctioned by law.

(C) is employed by a corporation, the organization of which is prompted more on the mitigation of tax liabilities than for legitimate business purpose.

(D) is any form of tax deduction scheme, regardless if the same is legal or not.

XXIV.

A, B, and C, all lawyers, formed a partnership called ABC Law Firm so that they can practice their profession as lawyers. For the year 2012, ABC Law Firm received earnings and paid expenses, among which are as follows: (6%)

Earnings:

(1) Professional/legal fees from various clients

(2) Cash prize received from a religious society in recognition of the exemplary service of ABC Law Firm

(3) Gains derived from sale of excess computers and laptops

Payments:

(1) Salaries of office staff

(2) Rentals for office space

(3) Representation expenses incurred in meetings with clients

(A) What are the items in the above mentioned earnings which should be included in the computation of ABC Law Firm’s gross income? Explain.

(B) What are the items in the above-mentioned payments which may be considered as deductions from the gross income of ABC Law Firm? Explain.

(C) If ABC Law Firm earns net income in 2012, what, if any, is the tax consequence on the part of ABC Law Firm insofar as the payment of income tax is concerned? What, if any, is the tax consequence on the part of A, B, and C as individual partners, insofar as the payment of income tax is concerned?

XXV.

Which of the following transactions is subject to Value-Added Tax (VAT)? (1%)

(A) Sale of shares of stock-listed and traded through the local stock exchange

(B) Importation of personal and household effects belonging to residents of the Philippines returning from abroad subject to custom duties under the Tariff and Customs Code

(C) Services rendered by individuals pursuant to an employeremployee relationship

(D) Gross receipts from lending activities by credit or multi-purpose cooperatives duly registered with the Cooperative Development Authority

XXVI.

Freezy Corporation, a domestic corporation engaged in the manufacture and sale of ice cream, made payments to an officer of Frosty Corporation, a competitor in the ice cream business, in exchange for said officer’s revelation of Frosty Corporation’s trade secrets.

May Freezy Corporation claim the payment to the officer as deduction from its gross income? Explain. (4%)

XXVII.

In January 2013, your friend got his first job as an o ffice clerk. He is single and lives with his family who depends upon him for financial support. His parents have long retired from their work, and his two (2) siblings are still minors and studying in grade school. In February 2014, he consulted you as he wanted to comply with all the rules pertaining to the preparation and filing of his income tax return. He now asks you the following:

(A) Is he entitled to personal exemptions? If so, how much? (1%)

(B) Is he entitled to additional exemptions? If so, how much? (1%)

(C) What is the effect of the taxes withheld from his salaries on his taxable income? (2%)

XXVIII.

Choose the correct answer. Tax laws – (1%)

(A) may be enacted for the promotion of private enterprise or business for as long as it gives incidental advantage to the public or the State

(B) are inherently legislative; therefore, may not be delegated

(C) are territorial in nature; hence, they do not recognize the generally-accepted tenets of international law

(D) adhere to uniformity and equality when all taxable articles or kinds of property of the same class are taxable at the same rate

XXIX.

Doña Evelina, a rich widow engaged in the business of currency exchange, was assessed a considerable amount of local business taxes by the City Government of Bagnet by virtue of Tax Ordinance No. 24. Despite her objections thereto, Doña Evelina paid the taxes. Nevertheless, unsatisfied with said Tax Ordinance, Doña Evelina, through her counsel Atty. ELP, filed a written claim for recovery of said local business taxes and contested the assessment. Her claim was denied, and so Atty. ELP elevated her case to the Regional Trial Court (RTC).

The RTC declared Tax Ordinance No. 24 null and void and without legal effect for having been enacted in violation of the public ation requirement of tax ordinances and revenue measures under the Local Government Code (LGC) and on the ground of double taxation. On appeal, the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) affirmed the decision of the RTC. No motion for reconsideration was filed and the decision became final and executory. (4%)

(A) If you are Atty. ELP, what advice will you give Doña Evelina so that she can recover the subject local business taxes?

(B) If Doña Evelina eventually recovers the local business taxes, must the same be considered as income taxable by the national government?

—ooo0ooo—

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s