The Tax Code of the Philippines (National Internal Revenue Code of 1997)

Tax codes and wordsTaxes have already existed since the ancient times. Tax is the lifeblood of nations and governments. Without tax revenues or collections, a democratic republic country like the Philippines will have no money to fund its national expenditures, such as public infrastructures (public schools, hospitals, roads and bridges), health care, and national security. Thus, our government has established, enacted, and implemented a national tax system to regulate taxation in our country.

Our current tax system is basically outlined in the Republic Act No. 8424, known as the Tax Reform Act of 1997 or the National Internal Revenue Code of 1997, as amended. This act has amended Presidential Decree No. 1158, Presidential Decree No. 1994 and Executive Order No. 273, otherwise known as the National Internal Revenue Code, as amended.

However, some parts of the Republic Act No. 8424 or the Tax Reform Act of 1997 have also been amended by the latest enacted tax laws and BIR regulations. For example, Republic Act 9337, more commonly known as the E-Vat or the R-Vat Law, has already amended sections 27, 28, 34, 106, 107, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 116, 117, 119, 121, 148, 151, 236, 237 and 288 of the National Internal Revenue Code of 1997, as amended. Furthermore, these amendments may still be further amended in the future.

The National Internal Revenue Code of 1997 covers the organization and function of the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR). It sets out the power and duties of the BIR and the powers and authorities of its commissioner, regional directors, and revenue officers. This can be read on the first title of the code.

Perhaps the largest content of the code pertains to the income tax, which can be read in the second title of the code. This portion of the Act states the definitions, general principles, tax rates, and computations of income tax on individual taxpayers, corporations, estates, and trusts. It also prescribes the accounting periods, methods of accounting, and other income tax requirements that taxpayers should comply.

Since almost all of us pay taxes, either as employees or business owners, and since we are all affected by the taxation system in our country, it is good to read and learn our National Internal Revenue Code where our basic tax system and principles are laid down.

The following is the outline of the National Internal Revenue Code of 1997:

Title I – Organization and Function of the Bureau of Internal Revenue
Title II – Tax on Income
Chapter I – Definitions
Chapter II – General Principles
Chapter III – Tax on Individuals
Chapter IV – Tax on Corporations
Chapter V – Computation of Taxable Income
Chapter VI – Computation of Gross Income
Chapter VII – Allowable Deductions
Chapter VIII – Accounting Periods and Methods of Accounting
Chapter IX – Returns and Payment of Tax
Chapter X – Estates and Trusts
Chapter XI – Other Income Tax Requirements
Chapter XII – Quarterly Corporate Income Tax Annual Declaration and Quarterly Payments of Income Taxes
Chapter XIII – Withholding on Wages
Title III Estate and Donor’s Taxes
Chapter I – Estate Tax
Chapter II – Donor’s Tax
Title IV Value-Added Tax
Chapter I – Imposition of Tax
Chapter II – Compliance Requirements
Title V Other Percentage Taxes
Title VI Excise Taxes on Certain Goods
Chapter I – General Provisions
Chapter II – Exemption or Conditional Tax-free Removal of Certain Articles
Chapter III- Excise Tax on Alcohol Products
Chapter IV – Excise Tax on Tobacco Products
Chapter V – Excise Tax on Petroleum Products
Chapter VI – Excise Tax on Miscellaneous Articles
Chapter VII – Excise Tax on Mineral Products
Chapter VIII – Administrative Provisions Regulating Business of Persons Dealing in Articles Subject to Excise Tax
Title VII Documentary Stamp Tax
Title VIII Remedies
Chapter I – Remedies in General
Chapter II – Civil Remedies for Collection of Taxes
Chapter III – Protesting as Assessment, Refund, Etc.
Title IX Compliance Requirements
Chapter I – Keeping of Books of Accounts and Records
Chapter II – Administrative Provisions
Chapter III – Rules and Regulations
Title X Statutory Offenses and Penalties
Chapter I – Additions to the Tax
Chapter II – Crimes, Other Offenses, and Forfeitures
Chapter III – Penalties Imposed in Public Officers
Chapter IV – Other Penal Provisions
Title XI Allotment of Internal Revenue
Chapter I – Disposition and Allotment of National Internal Revenue in General
Chapter II – Special Disposition of Certain National Internal Revenue Taxes
Title XII Oversight Committee
Title XIII Repealing Provisions
Title XIV Final Provisions 

To download a PDF file copy and read the full text of the NIRC of 1997 or the Republic Act No. 8424, please go here.

Victorino Abrugar is a retired CPA practitioner, a blogger, speaker, and an entrepreneur. He's the President of Optixor, Inc., a digital marketing company based in the Philippines. Follow him on Twitter at @viclogic.


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