On November 2011, the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) has issued Revenue Regulation No. 19-2011, requiring taxpayers to use the revised forms for filing their income tax returns. The new forms, which include BIR Form 1700 (Annual Income Tax Return for Individuals Earning Purely Compensation Income), BIR Form 1701 (Annual Income Tax Return for Self-Employed Individuals, Estates and Trusts), and BIR Form 1702 (Annual Income Tax Return for Corporation, Partnership and Other Non-Individual Taxpayer), are required correspondingly for individual and non individual taxpayers to use for their annual income tax filing covering and starting calendar year 2011, which is due on or before April 15, 2012. The revised forms include additional fields that are not included in the old forms. That is why taxpayers find them more complicated to fill up than the previous forms. But here comes the good news… the BIR has already made available the “interactive forms” on their website.
An interactive form is a document with blank spaces that allows the user to insert data, edit, save and print. The BIR has made available for download interactive format of the November 2011 versions of BIR forms 1700, 1701, and 1702.
You may download the interactive forms in the BIR website forms section. There, you will find a zipped file that contains the Interactive PDF file and an MSWord file for BIR’s guidelines on using the form. In the BIR guidelines, you can read important information, such as the features of the interactive forms, computer system requirements, how to fill up the form, how to print the form, how to file the form, and frequently asked questions.
The interactive forms can be viewed, edited and printed using Acrobat Reader and PDF-Xchange Viewer. However, only the PDF-Xchange Viewer will give you the ability to save the file. Acrobat Reader will only allow you to view, edit and print the interactive form, but it will not allow you to save the file. A link to the website where you can download PDF-Xchange Viewer for free is provided in the BIR’s guideline file included in the zipped file you will download together with the interactive form.
These interactive forms are convenient to use since they can be edited and automatic computations are done even if you don’t have an Internet connection and the form is offline. These automatic computations also avoid errors usually committed in manual computation.
To fill up the form, you just need to place the cursor of the mouse within the boxes and click to start entering data. You can also use the form even without a mouse by using the tab key to move around the form. The form can be saved and the taxpayer can easily edit the form, and re-use it in the future. Another feature of the interactive form is that the items can be validated. For example, fields that require alphabetical characters will not allow a taxpayer to enter numbers and vice versa.
Mandatory items are also outlined in red. Once the taxpayer saves the form without filling up mandatory items, a message will appear stating: “Reminder: You have not yet filled out all the red boxes. If these boxes are not all filled out and this form is submitted, it will be considered incomplete and/or you may be subject to audit.”
In order to use the Interactive Forms, your computer should support Windows 2000/XP/Vista/7 Operating Systems.