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Lawmaker seeks to simplify tax laws to lift bar pass rate.

THE low passing rate of bar examinees in the taxation law subject of the 2018 bar examinations prompted a lawmaker to seek for the simplification of the country's tax laws.

1-CARE Party-list Rep. Carlos Roman Uybarreta said Congress may have to do much more to simplify tax law and improve the math abilities of college graduates, commenting on the low passing rate of bar examinees in the taxation law subject of the 2018 bar examinations.

Uybarreta said he will confer with his colleagues on the ways and means committee and with top officials of the Department of Finance, Bureau of Internal Revenue and the Bureau of Customs 'to figure out more ways to simplify our country's tax laws' when session resumes this month.

'If most law school students are unable to pass the taxation law part of the annual bar exams, that is a good indicator that either the tax laws are not simple or law students are weak in math, or both,' said Uybarreta, a member of the House Committee on Ways and

Means Committee.

'Apparently, the taxation law exam scores were the deciding factor for most of the bar examinees because that is what flunked most of them,' he added.

Earlier, Supreme Court Associate Justice Mariano del Castillo said 18.78 percent was the passing rate in the taxation part of the bar exams, and taxation law had the lowest passing rate among the

various subjects.

According to the lawmaker, a graduate of senior high school and of college should be able to do his or her own income tax return without the aid of an accountant or lawyer, saying this is a key quality standard indicator Congress must aim for in tax reforms.

Uybarreta added the competency standard for business course graduates would be higher since financial matters are among their specialty.

'Tax reform is a delicate and sensitive matter. The 17th Congress was able to take the first simplification steps with the changes to income taxation on compensation and mixed income earners,' he said, referring to the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion Law. 'In the process, we were also able to give higher take-home pay net of taxes starting with the 2018 taxable year.'

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Publication:Business Mirror (Makati City, Philippines)
Date:May 6, 2019
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