CIR has no fresh or separate 180-day period to decide administrative appeals
November 11, 2022
In Commissioner of Internal Revenue v Ruben U Yu,(1) the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) en banc clarified that the 180-day period referred to in section 228 of the Tax Code, as amended, applies only to the period within which the Commissioner of Internal Revenue (CIR), or their duly authorised representative, may act on a protest against a tax assessment.
Thus, if a taxpayer files an administrative appeal to request the reconsideration of the decision of the CIR's duly authorised representative on a protest, the CIR is not given a fresh or separate 180-day period to decide the administrative appeal.
The taxpayer filed a protest on 3 December 2015, disputing the correctness and validity of the tax assessment issued against him and requesting a reinvestigation. The taxpayer had 60 days from that date, or until 1 February 2016, to submit the required supporting documents. Thereafter, the CIR's duly authorised representative (in this case, the regional director (RD)), had 180 days from 1 February 2016 (ie, until 30 July 2016) to act on the taxpayer's protest. The taxpayer opted to wait for the RD's decision instead of filing an appeal with the CTA within 30 days from 30 July 2016, which was the end of the 180-day period. On 22 August 2016, the RD issued a revised tax assessment, demanding the immediate payment of the taxpayer's deficiency taxes.
Upon receipt of the RD's decision, the taxpayer had the option of:
- appealing the RD's decision to the CTA; or
- elevating his protest through a request for reconsideration of the RD decision to the CIR (ie, filing an administrative appeal).
Both had to be done within 30 days from receipt of the decision. The taxpayer opted to file an administrative appeal with the CIR on 20 September 2016.
In view of the CIR's inaction on the administrative appeal, the taxpayer filed a petition for review with the CTA on 17 April 2017. The taxpayer was under the impression that the CIR had a fresh or separate 180-day period to act on the administrative appeal and thus filed his petition for review with the CTA within 30 days from the lapse of the 180-day period.
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