Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Online Sellers Beware!! BIR is now coming!

MANILA – Online traders and entrepreneurs beware, as the Bureau of Internal Revenue this year will start going after those who fail to issue electronic invoices to customers.

Commissioner Kim Jacinto-Henares told reporters that online businesses – such as sulit.com.ph, e-bay Philippines, alibaba.com, ayosdito.ph and multiply.com - would have to be registered with the BIR.

"These businesses shall be registered to us, and that they should be paying the corresponding taxes. Otherwise, we will run after them," Jacinto-Henares said.

She said even entrepreneurs who use their personal Facebook accounts for business transactions would have to comply with the invoicing requirement.

"Some sellers negotiate directly on their personal Facebook accounts, and if these transactions are done on a regular basis, it would make him or her engaged in business, thus they also have to register and issue the necessary receipts and/or invoices," Jacinto-Henares said.

"What happens when you buy is you receive it by e-mail since the negotiation takes place via email or online. The buyer gets the receipt of his or her purchase through e-mail, which in turn, be printed out and the buyer could keep the same," she said.

"This plan will push through hopefully within the year. Under the rules, online sellers shall be registered as such to the BIR, and that their electronic invoicing shall likewise be registered either directly to us or a third-party accredited by us," the BIR chief said.

"The electronic invoicing could be availed of through a third party, but such third-party shall be accredited by the BIR. Meaning, private parties could participate and get the necessary accreditation from us," she added.

Citing Section 237 of the National Internal Revenue Code, the BIR chief said the bureau need not issue a revenue regulation to implement the law requiring the issuance of receipts and sales invoices for online transactions as well as penalties for non-compliance.

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