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CTA affirms PLAI’s P115.2-M refund

THE COURT of Tax Appeals (CTA) affirmed the granted claim for refund of Premium Leisure and Amusement, Inc. (PLAI) of P115.2 million in erroneously paid income tax for the calendar year 2015.

In a 17-page ruling on April 12 and made public on April 18, the CTA en banc said there was no new reason given by the petitioner to reverse or modify the CTA First Division’s decision.

PLAI is a domestic investment holding company that engages in gaming-related businesses in the country.

CIR, the petitioner, under the law has the authority to refund internal revenue taxes, fees or other charges, and penalties provided by the country’s Tax Code.

The Commissioner of Internal Revenue (CIR) earlier asked the CTA en banc to nullify the prior ruling, claiming the court’s First Division made an error in saying the company was entitled to the tax refund.

The company asserted in its claim that being a licensee of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR), it is entitled to benefits that include income tax privilege. It also argued that it showed proof of payment of the applicable license fee to PAGCOR inclusive of the franchise tax.

Meanwhile, the petitioner said the company has not proven its entitlement to the refund and that the judicial claim was not filed in the proper period.

“At the outset, Petitioner (CIR) presents no new argument to persuade us that it has a meritorious case,” according to a copy of the ruling written by CTA Associate Justice Maria Belen M. Ringpis-Liban. “They were already passed upon, addressed, and resolved in the assailed decision and assailed resolution.”

The court noted that the company timely filed its claims within the tax court’s prescribed two-year period from filing its annual income tax returns.

The tribunal stressed that the respondent properly indicated in its annual tax income return its paid tax due amounting to P115.2 million as well as official receipts issued by PAGCOR were proven credible sources of evidence.

“In this case, respondent was able to prove that it is entitled to refund or issuance of a tax credit certificate for its erroneously paid income tax for CY 2015,” said the en banc.

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