After the signing of the Joint Rules and Regulations implementing Republic Act (RA) No. 9520 (Philippine Cooperative Code of 2008) last February 5, 2010, the BIR issued a revenue issuance, Revenue Memorandum Circular (RMC) No. 19-2010 regarding the tax audit guidelines for more than 75,000 cooperatives nationwide.The RMC provided that, all tax cases prior to the effectivity date of R.A. 9520 last March 22, 2009, the old Cooperative Code under R.A. 6938 shall govern since the new law (R.A. 9520) did not provide any retroactive effect.

Also, all BIR Offices are authorized to issue notices of investigation for the 2008 internal revenue tax returns of cooperatives, including tax returns of fiscal period taxpayers whose taxable year ended March 22, 2009.

Lastly, BIR has to secure prior authorization from the CDA or from any of its Extension Offices having jurisdiction over the cooperative for all other tax cases covering the period beyond March 22, 2009. Said authorization shall be released by CDA and the concerned extension office within twenty (20) days from receipt of the request from the BIR.

Likewise, CDA shall also be providing the concerned cooperative said authorization provided to the BIR for their information.

BIR Commissioner Joel L. Tan-Torres said “Cooperatives, even though they enjoy preferential tax treatment, shall still have to undergo BIR audit to ensure that they are properly complying with the requirements of the Tax Code and the Cooperative Code.”