In order to keep the flow of tax revenue afloat to finance the growing public spending that is required to overcome the ravages of COVID-19, Hernández & Cía. Lawyers propose an alternative that will boost tax collection.
It is worth pointing out that in two years of the pandemic, approximately 135,000 companies closed in Peru, and in addition to this, inflation is currently being exacerbated by the geopolitical conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
In this sense, the lawyer Leonardo López – also president of the Tax Commission of the Lima Chamber of Commerce (CCL) – indicates that, until April of this year, some 1,400 companies still have legal disputes with Sunat for more than S / 13.4 billion.
Of this total, a large part responds to interest accumulated in years of litigation. “In some cases, this accumulated interest reaches 80% of the final amount required compared to the amount originally intended. And this problem applies to all types of taxpayers (large, medium or small)”, he refers.
The lawyer explains that the State cannot account for this amount as a debt in collection because it is in dispute, and that being in this situation it cannot be perceived as an asset because it can be lost. In addition to the fact that said contingent asset should not even generate interest when the State exceeds the legal deadlines to give it a solution, as the Constitutional Court has established in repeated rulings.
According to data from Sunat, during 2021 more than S / 5,000 million in disputes became doubtful debt collection, that is, uncollectible. According to López, this responds to the fact that a large part of the hypothetical debtors become unviable businesses.
“In other words, it is not only a contingent asset, but when it becomes demandable, the State runs the risk of not being able to execute it,” he adds.
The lawyer assures that, according to a Macroconsult study commissioned by the CCL, The creation of an alternative dispute mechanism would allow private or public companies to fully or partially pay tax debts, regardless of their collection status, corresponding to periods due up to 2018.
With this mechanism, Sunat would be allowed to collect up to S/ 12,000 million, thus freeing up resources for basic needs and reducing the administrative and judicial burden on the State.
“For example, to finance the purchase of fertilizers, bonds for families hit by inflation and unemployment, as well as to finance all the promises that the Executive has been making in the interior of the country,” he adds.
Finally, López considers it necessary to insist on this mechanism to solve tax disputes and also encourage taxpayers to withdraw from their processes, since it would not only generate a specific source of income for the treasury, but it would also give a better signal for investments. required and for the consequent creation of employment to the extent that companies no longer have liabilities that affect their possibilities of new financing.