After the BIR examiners now the lawyers.
Commissioner Joel L. Tan Torres in his bid to improve tax administration and collection has issued Revenue Memorandum Order (RMO) No. 15-2010 which provides the guidelines and procedures on handling tax court cases. With this RMO, the expected result is more favorable decisions that would enhance the image and stature of BIR’s litigation and prosecution offices.
The first guideline cited, is that BIR lawyers along with their witnesses shall follow the “BIR Time – On Time”(OT-BT) habit, meaning being punctual in attending to their court cases. The lawyers’ attendance (or non-attendance) shall be closely monitored by the Assistant Commissioner (ACIR) for Inspection Service and ACIR, Legal Service shall institute the necessary action for non-observance of the OT-BT.
Besides being on time, adequate preparation for their court hearings shall be observed. Close coordination of BIR lawyers with their witnesses as to the case details was also stressed in the RMO.
To coincide with this, submission of a prescribed Summary Report after each hearing is required which shall be submitted to the Assistant Commissioner (ACIR) of Legal Service or the Chief, Legal Division for National and Regional Offices respectively. Said Summary Report/s shall be then forwarded by all the heads of legal offices monthly to the ACIR of Legal Service for consolidation, preparation and circularization of a tax digest, for reference to all BIR employees.
For adverse tax court decisions and motions for postponement of hearings or extension of time to submit pleadings or present witnesses, this shall be further evaluated or addressed by the ACIR of Legal Service for National Office cases and Chief, Legal Division for the Revenue Region (RR) for institution of motion for reconsideration or appeal.
Motions for withdrawal of cases shall be approved only by the Commissioner or Internal Revenue (CIR).
The Deputy Commissioner (DCIR) for Legal and Inspection shall be responsible for the legal training, provision of necessary allowance, incentive system and manpower planning for the BIR lawyers. (mldn)