Extension hurdles Senate
SENATOR Sherwin “Win” Gatchalian said heirs will have another chance to avail of the government’s estate tax amnesty program as the Senate approved on the third and final reading a proposed measure that would extend by two years the period of availment and simplify the process of the tax relief.
Gatchalian, the chairperson of the Senate Ways and Means Committee, filed Senate Bill (SB) 2219 or An Act Amending Republic Act (RA) 11213, otherwise known as the “Tax Amnesty Act” as amended by RA 11569, which seeks to extend by two years and simplify the process of availing of the estate tax amnesty program.
“Gusto nating bigyan ng huling pagkakataon ang ating mga kababayan na mapakinabangan ang amnestiya ukol sa pagbabayad ng estate tax. Inaasahan natin na mas marami sa ating mga kababayan na nawalan ng mahal sa buhay sa kasagsagan ng pandemiya ang makikinabang sa pagpapalawig ng amnestiyang ito,” Gatchalian said.
The lawmaker noted that as of April this year, about 130,000 taxpayers have so far availed of the tax amnesty.
Heeding the clamor to extend the amnesty – the proposed measure seeks to extend until June 14, 2025, the period of availment, which is set to expire under existing law on June 14 this year.
The measure will also expand the coverage of the estate tax amnesty program by including estates of decedents who passed away on or before May 31, 2022, originally from December 31, 2017, to include those who lost a loved one at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Senate version also includes an installment payment feature to encourage more taxpayers to avail of the amnesty program.
According to Gatchalian, such a feature will be provided to taxpayers without civil penalties and interest, ensuring that taxpayers with limited available cash in the estate can fulfill their obligations in a more manageable and financially sustainable manner.
“Inaasahan natin na mas marami sa ating mga taxpayers, lalo na yung mga may limitasyon sa kanilang budget, ang makikinabang sa extension dahil mapapagaan nito nang husto ang kanilang pagbabayad ng estate tax,” he said.
Gatchalian further emphasized that in addition to providing relief for taxpayers of amnesty tax, the measure would also pave the way for estate taxpayers to realize the full potential of their assets.
“This program provides an opportunity for taxpayers to formalize their ownership of land, thus securing property rights, and would empower them to maximize the value of their assets through various economic activities,” he ended.