Expect a ‘foul’ cry from Marcos’ heirs
Finance

Expect a ‘foul’ cry from Marcos’ heirs

Mar 18, 2022, 8:29 AM
Rose De La Cruz

Rose De La Cruz

Columnist

Now it’s the Department of Finance asking its collection arm, the Bureau of Internal Revenue, to ask for payment of P203 billion estate tax from the heirs of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos to help the government in institutionalizing its assistance programs for the people to ease their plight during the oil price crisis.

The Department of Finance is pushing the Bureau of Internal Revenue to collect from the heirs of the late dictator, Ferdinand Marcos, some P203 billion of estate taxes to generate more revenues to help government institutionalize programs to ease the lives of Filipinos in the ongoing oil price crisis.

As I see it, the Marcos children would cry ‘foul’ and make it look like they are being persecuted at a time that Ferdinand Jr. the only male son of the former president, is running for president in the May 9 national and local elections.

When the BIR confirmed recently that it sent a demand letter to the Marcos family last December 31, 2021, already the election survey frontrunner immediately called it ‘fake news,’ as if its timing was meant to reduce his chances at the polls.

The CNN Philippines ran a story at past noon about the DoF pushing the BIR to collect the unpaid P203 billion estate taxes of the Marcos heirs.

"In general, we have been pushing the BIR and the Bureau of Customs to collect revenue, and to look for sources of revenue, as you know, we really need more funds given the situation," Finance Assistant Secretary Paola Alvarez told CNN Philippines' The Source show today.

Alvarez referred to the shortage of funds to subsidize more sectors that are struggling with rising pump prices and increased costs of other basic commodities.

The BIR, as previously confirmed by the Aksyon Demokratiko Party, wrote a demand letter in December 2021 asking the Marcoses to pay their estate taxes.

"As to how they (BIR) have been approaching the heirs, we are not quite privy because it's the BIR handling it," Alvarez said.

As per BIR, estate tax is not a tax on property, but one "imposed on the privilege of transmitting property upon the death of the owner." It further explained via its official site that "the Estate Tax is based on the laws in force at the time of death notwithstanding the postponement of the actual possession or enjoyment of the estate by the beneficiary."

Fake news

Presidential candidate BBM earlier claimed "there's a lot of fake news involved" in his family's unpaid estate taxes despite the 1997 Supreme Court ruling that they must settle their liabilities, which initially amounted to ₱23 billion in 1997.

In other words, based on the estate tax definition by the BIR, the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos' heirs, namely, his wife Imelda, and children Imee, Bongbong and Irene, are obligated to pay the estate tax because of the privilege of transmitting Marcos' property to them.

Manila Mayor Isko Moreno, who chairs Aksyon Demokratiko, earlier said the Marcos family should voluntarily pay the amount to show their sincerity for the welfare of Filipinos.

He argued that if the survey frontrunner gets elected and runs the government for the next six years, the said ₱200 billion tax liabilities will likely be forgotten.

Alvarez said even the government is currently stretched with resources with regard to the provision of a measly ₱200 monthly aid for the country's poorest households amid the fuel crisis.

The DOF is also pushing the BIR to collect revenue sources from other online gaming and other forms of taxes.

The government has so far allocated ₱5 billion to subsidize public transport drivers and ₱1 billion fuel discount for the agricultural sector which is also bearing the brunt of increased oil prices.

Tags: #DoF, #BIR, #estatetaxesofMarcosheirs, #fakenews, #finance


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