(QCOSTARICA) Four out of ten businesses inspected by the Ministry of Finance (Ministerio de Hacienda) in the provinces of Puntarenas, Guanacaste, Heredia and Alajuela, had some degree of tax non-compliance.
According to tax authorities, in March of this year 51% of businesses in Guanacaste and 49% in Puntarenas had tax irregularities. In June the irregularities rose to 53% in Guanacaste and fell to 44% in Puntarenas.
The inspections are part of regular visits to verify tax compliance, business registration and delivery of invoices and receipts and the origin of products being sold.
Non-delivery of invoices and receipts (facturas in Spanish) remains a major failure. A businesses that does not issue invoices or receipts is exposed to a penalty equivalent to two base salaries, as provided in Article 85 of the Código de Normas y Procedimientos Tributarios (Tax Code, Rules and Procedures).
If the business is a repeat offender, it is exposed to closure of the business establishment of up to five calendar days.
“We again call on the people to demand a bill or pay stub, even if paying by credit card or debit card to ensure that businesses comply with their tax obligations and enter the Tax Lottery,” said the deputy minister of Finance, Fernando Rodriguez. See Finance Ministry Wants To Encourage Use of Plastic Money With A Lottery
In order for citizens to help in the fight against tax evasion, the Ministry of Finance created the DenuncieYa web application, which can be accessed from mobile phones with the Android operating system (that is just about every mobile phone except the iPhone) or computer.
The App allows a person to file a complaint against businesses that do not provide invoices, are not registered with the tax department and that do not accept credit or debit cards, among others.