How does one compute for Philippine Estate Taxes? While both are terrifying, taxes are often more unpleasant than death. This quick guide walks you by the hand on the new bank-busting changes impacted by TRAIN Law.
TRAIN LAW and Estate Taxes: finally in full effect as of December 19, 2017. Known as the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN), Republic Act (RA) 10963, was signed into law. The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) thereafter promulgated Revenue Regulations No. 12-2018, which contains the implementing guidelines related to the revised Estate Tax and Donor’s Taxes to rule all applicable transactions as of 2018. If you donated after January 2018 or experienced a death in the family since, this applies to you.
What’s New Under Philippine Estate Taxes under TRAIN Law
Philippine TRAIN Law amended the National Internal Revenue Code of 1997 (Tax Code). Blanket changes impacted personal-income taxation, passive income, estate tax, donor’s tax, value-added tax, excise tax and documentary stamp tax. TRAIN completed publication in the official gazette and affects all persons from January 2018 onwards.
Flat Philippine Estate Tax Rate of 6%
Simplifcation is key under President Duterte’s Tax Law. Sec 22 of the TRAIN law amends Section 84 of the Tax Code, which gioverns the estate-tax rate. Up till 2018, estate tax looked at the value of the net estate of the decedent and mandated a tax schedule where an estate worth P200,000 and over was taxed from 5 percent to twenty percent. This no longer holds under TRAIN law, and estate tax faces a flat rate of 6 percent. Residents or nonresident of the Philippines bear this responsibility
Philipine Estate Tax Deductions under TRAIN Law
Tax evaders throw in multiple fictitious deductions to lower taxes. Combatting the same, section 23 of the TRAIN law amends Section 86 of the Tax Code, which provides for the computation of the net estate and allowable deductions to the gross estate of an individual. Under TRAIN , the low no longer allows funeral expenses, judicial and litigation expenses or medical costs as allowable deductions.
It’s not all bad. The law provides relief by way of boosting the Standard Deduction to Five million pesos. Prior to TRAIN , said deduction only amounted to One Million . Today, citizens (resident or nonresident) and aliens,resident or nonresident aliens benefit from the standard deduction. Caveat: Non-resident aliens get up to P500,000 only.
Family Homes Exemption from Estate Taxes
TRAIN law looks upon family homes with more leniency. Under pre-2017 rules, only family homes worth One Million enjoyed exemption. From 2018 onwards, family homes that are worth up to P10 million will be exempted from estate tax.
Leniency of Estate Procedures under TRAIN Law
Filing of Notice of Death provision Changed
Sec 24 of the TRAIN law removes Sec 89 of the Tax Code. The repealed provision governs notice of death.
Filing of Philippine Estate Tax Return
Sec 25 of the TRAIN law amends Sec 90 of the Tax Code, which governs the procedural requirements for the estate-tax return.
From 2018 onwards, TRAIN law mandates that estate tax documents carrying a gross value exceeding P5 million must bear the stamp of a certified public accountant. The change is Three million higher than under previous regimes.
Period of Filing Estate Tax Returs
The TRAIN law upgraded the period for filing of estate-tax returns from six months from the decedent’s death to one year.
Withdrawals from Deceased’s Bank Deposits
Section 27 of TRAIN Law amends Section 97 of the Tax Code. Under the old provisions, only withdrawals up to P20,000 are allowed. The administrator of the estate or any one of the heirs may, when authorized by the commissioner, withdraw an amount not exceeding P20,000. Train Law offers leniency with increased allowable withdrawals from the deceased person’s account to any amount, subject to a 6-percent final withholding tax.
Estate Tax by Installment Availability
Section 26 of the TRAIN law offers payment by installment in a straightforward manner. There is a limitation of two years for the payment of the full estate-tax accountabilitues to the BIR
The Spirit of the TRAIN Law and Philippine Estate Taxes
Estate taxes posed great quandry to those who suffered loss of loved ones and compounded further with diminishment of assets. Law makers thereby so the expediency of convincing heirs to declare the real value of their deceased estate and to pay the proper estate tax.
Further reading will require a glance at BIR Regulations enacted to implement the TRAIN Law
BIR Revenue Regulations No. 12-2018
Consolidated Revenue Regulations on Estate Tax and Donor’s Tax Incorporating the Amendments Introduced by Republic Act No. 10963, Otherwise Known as the “Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law”
SECTION 1. SCOPE. – Pursuant to the provisions of Sec. 244 of the National Internal Revenue Code of 1997, as amended (NIRC), and Sec. 84 of Republic Act No. 10963, otherwise known as the “Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law”, these Regulations are hereby issued to consolidate the rules governing the imposition and payment of the estate and donor’s tax incorporating the provisions of the TRAIN Law, particularly the provisions in Chapters I and II of Title III of the NIRC, thereby repealing Revenue Regulations (RR) No. 2- 2003, as amended.
SEC. 2. RATE OF ESTATE TAX. – The net estate of every decedent, whether resident or non-resident of the Philippines, as determined in accordance with the NIRC, shall be subject to an estate tax at the rate of six percent (6%).
SEC. 3. THE LAW THAT GOVERNS THE IMPOSITION OF ESTATE TAX. – It is a well-settled rule that estate taxation is governed by the statute in force at the time of death of the decedent. The estate tax accrues as of the death of the decedent and the accrual of the tax is distinct from the obligation to pay the same. Upon the death of the decedent, succession takes place and the right of the State to tax the privilege to transmit the estate vests instantly upon death.
Accordingly, the tax rates and procedures prescribed under these Regulations shall govern the estate of decedent who died on or after the effectivity date of the TRAIN Law.
SEC. 4. COMPOSITION OF THE GROSS ESTATE. – The gross estate of a decedent shall be comprised of the following properties and interest therein at the time of his/her death, including revocable transfers and transfers for insufficient consideration, etc.:
1. Residents and citizens – all properties, real or personal, tangible or intangible, wherever situated.
2. Non-resident aliens – only properties situated in the Philippines provided, that, with respect to intangible personal property, its inclusion in the gross estate is subject to the rule of reciprocity provided for under Section 104 of the NIRC.
Provided, That amounts withdrawn from the deposit accounts of a decedent subjected to the 6% final withholding tax imposed under Section 97 of the NIRC, shall be excluded from the gross estate for purposes of computing the estate tax.
SEC. 5. VALUATION OF THE GROSS ESTATE. – The properties comprising the gross estate shall be valued according to their fair market value as of the time of decedent’s death.
If the property is a real property, the appraised value thereof as of the time of death shall be, whichever is the higher of –
(1) The fair market value as determined by the Commissioner, or
(2) The fair market value as shown in the schedule of values fixed by the provincial and city assessors, whichever is higher.
For purposes of prescribing real property values, the Commissioner is authorized to divide the Philippines into different zones or areas and shall, upon consultation with competent appraisers, both from the private and public sectors, determine the fair market value of real properties located in each zone or area.
In the case of shares of stocks, the fair market value shall depend on whether the shares are listed or unlisted in the stock exchanges. Unlisted common shares are valued based on their book value while unlisted preferred shares are valued at par value. In determining the book value of common shares, appraisal surplus shall not be considered as well as the value assigned to preferred shares, if there are any. On this note, the valuation of unlisted shares shall be exempt from the provisions of RR No. 06-2013, as amended.
For shares which are listed in the stock exchanges, the fair market value shall be the arithmetic mean between the highest and lowest quotation at a date nearest the date of death, if none is available on the date of death itself.
The fair market value of units of participation in any association, recreation or amusement club (such as golf, polo, or similar clubs), shall be the bid price nearest the date of death published in any newspaper or publication of general circulation.
To determine the value of the right to usufruct, use or habitation, as well as that of annuity, there shall be taken into account the probable life of the beneficiary in accordance with the latest basic standard mortality table, to be approved by the Secretary of Finance, upon recommendation of the Insurance Commissioner.
Deductions from Gross Estate
SEC 6. COMPUTATION OF THE NET ESTATE OF A DECEDENT WHO IS EITHER A CITIZEN OR RESIDENT OF THE PHILIPPINES – The value of the net estate of a citizen or resident alien of the Philippines shall be determined by deducting from the value of the gross estate the following items of deduction:
1. Standard deduction. – A deduction in the amount of Five Million Pesos (P5,000,000) shall be allowed without need of substantiation. The full amount of P5,000,000 shall be allowed as deduction for the benefit of the decedent. The presentation of such deduction in the computation of the net taxable estate of the decedent is properly illustrated in these Regulations.
2. Claims against the estate. – The word “claims” is generally construed to mean debts or demands of a pecuniary nature which could have been enforced against the deceased in his lifetime and could have been reduced to simple money judgements. Claims against the estate or indebtedness in respect of property may arise out of: (1) Contract; (2) Tort; or (3) Operation of Law.
2.1. Requisites for Deductibility of Claims Against the Estate –
2.1.1. The liability represents a personal obligation of the deceased existing at the time of his death;
2.1.2. The liability was contracted in good faith and for adequate and full consideration in money or money’s worth;
2.1.3. The claim must be a debt or claim which is valid in law and enforceable in court;
2.1.4. The indebtedness must not have been condoned by the creditor or the action to collect from the decedent must not have prescribed.
2.2. Substantiation Requirements. – All unpaid obligations and liabilities of the decedent at the time of his death are allowed as deductions from gross estate. Provided, however, that the following requirements/documents are complied with/submitted:
2.2.1. In case of simple loan (including advances):
184.108.40.206 The debt instrument must be duly notarized at the time the indebtedness was incurred, such as promissory note or contract of loan, except for loans granted by financial institutions where notarization is not part of the business practice/policy of the financial institution-lender;
220.127.116.11. Duly notarized Certification from the creditor as to the unpaid balance of the debt, including interest as of the time of death. If the creditor is a corporation, the sworn certification should be signed by the President, or Vice- President, or other principal officer of the corporation. If the creditor is a partnership, the sworn certification should be signed by any of the general partners. In case the creditor is a bank or other financial institutions, the Certification shall be executed by the branch manager of the bank/financial institution which monitors and manages the loan of the decedent-debtor. If the creditor is an individual, the sworn certification should be signed by him. In any of these cases, the one who should certify must not be a relative of the borrower within the fourth civil degree, either by consanguinity or affinity, except when the requirement below is complied with.
When the lender, or the President/Vice-president/principal officer of the creditor-corporation, or the general partner of the creditor-partnership is a relative of the debtor in the degree mentioned above, a copy of the promissory note or other evidence of the indebtedness must be filed with the RDO having jurisdiction over the borrower within fifteen days from the execution thereof.
18.104.22.168. In accordance with the requirements as prescribed in existing or prevailing internal revenue issuances, proof of financial capacity of the creditor to lend the amount at the time the loan was granted, as well as its latest audited balance sheet with a detailed schedule of its receivable showing the unpaid balance of the decedent-debtor. In case the creditor is an individual who is no longer required to file income tax returns with the Bureau, a duly notarized Declaration by the creditor of his capacity to lend at the time when the loan was granted without prejudice to verification that may be made by the BIR to substantiate such declaration of the creditor. If the creditor is a non-resident, the executor/administrator or any of the legal heirs must submit a duly notarized declaration by the creditor of his capacity to lend at the time when the loan was granted, authenticated or certified to as such by the tax authority of the country where the non-resident creditor is a resident;
22.214.171.124. A statement under oath executed by the administrator or executor of the estate reflecting the disposition of the proceeds of the loan if said loan was contracted within three (3) years prior to the death of the decedent;
2.2.2. If the unpaid obligation arose from purchase of goods or services:
126.96.36.199. Pertinent documents evidencing the purchase of goods or service, such as sales invoice/delivery receipt (for sale of goods), or contract for the services agreed to be rendered (for sale of service), as duly acknowledged, executed and signed by decedent debtor and creditor, and statement of account given by the creditor as duly received by the decedent debtor;
188.8.131.52. Duly notarized Certification from the creditor as to the unpaid balance of the debt, including interest as of the time of death. If the creditor is a corporation, the sworn Certification should be signed by the President, or Vice- President, or other principal officer of the corporation. If the creditor is a partnership, the sworn certification should be signed by any of the general partners. If the creditor is a sole proprietorship, the sworn certification should be signed by the owner of the business. In any of these cases, the one who issues the certification must not be a relative of the decedent-debtor within the fourth civil degree, either by consanguinity or affinity, except when the requirement below is complied with.
When the lender, or the President/Vice-President/principal officer of the creditor-corporation, or the general partner of the creditor-partnership is a relative of the debtor in the degree mentioned above, a copy of the promissory note or other evidence of the indebtedness must be filed with the RDO having jurisdiction over the borrower within fifteen days from the execution thereof.
184.108.40.206. Certified true copy of the latest audited balance sheet of the creditor with a detailed schedule of its receivable showing the unpaid balance of the decedent-debtor. Moreover, a certified true copy of the updated latest subsidiary ledger/records of the debt of the debtor-decedent, (certified by the creditor, i.e., the officers mentioned in the preceding paragraphs) should likewise be submitted.
2.2.3. Where the settlement is made through the Court in a testate or intestate proceeding, pertinent documents filed with the Court evidencing the claims against the estate, and the Court Order approving the said claims, if already issued, in addition to the documents mentioned in the preceding paragraphs.
3. Claims of the deceased against insolvent persons as defined under R.A. 10142 (“The Financial Rehabilitation and Insolvency Act (FRIA) of 2010”) and other existing laws, where the value of the decedent’s interest therein is included in the value of the gross estate.
4. Unpaid mortgages, taxes and casualty losses.
4.1. Unpaid mortgages upon, or any indebtedness in respect to, property where the value of the decedent’s interest therein, undiminished by such mortgage or indebtedness, is included in the value of the gross estate. The deduction herein allowed in the case of claims against the estate, unpaid mortgages or any indebtedness shall, when founded upon a promise or agreement, be limited to the extent that they were contracted bona fide and for an adequate and full consideration in money or money’s worth.
4.2. Taxes which have accrued as of the death of the decedent which were unpaid as of the time of death. This deduction will not include income tax upon income received after death, or property taxes not accrued before his death, or the estate tax due from the transmission of his estate.
4.3. There shall also be deducted losses incurred during the settlement of the estate arising from fires, storms, shipwreck, or other casualties, or from robbery, theft or embezzlement, when such losses are not compensated for by insurance or otherwise, and if at the time of the filing of the return such losses have not been claimed as a deduction for income tax purposes in an income tax return, and provided that such losses were incurred not later than the last day for the payment of the estate tax as prescribed in Subsection (A) of Section 91.
In case unpaid mortgage payable is being claimed by the estate, verification must be made as to who was the beneficiary of the loan proceeds. If the loan is found to be merely an accommodation loan where the loan proceeds went to another person, the value of the unpaid loan must be included as a receivable of the estate. If there is a legal impediment to recognize the same as receivable of the estate, said unpaid obligation/mortgage payable shall not be allowed as a deduction from the gross estate.
In all instances, the mortgaged property, to the extent of the decedent’s interest therein, should always form part of the gross taxable estate.
5. Property previously taxed. – An amount equal to the value specified below of any property forming part of the gross estate situated in the Philippines of any person who died within five (5) years prior to the death of the decedent, or transferred to the decedent by gift within five (5) years prior to his death, where such property can be identified as having been received by the decedent from the donor by gift, or from such prior decedent by gift, bequest, devise or inheritance, or which can be identified as having been acquired in exchange for property so received:
a. One hundred percent (100%) of the value if the prior decedent died within one (1) year prior to the death of the decedent, or if the property was transferred to him by gift, within the same period prior to his death;
b. Eighty percent (80%) of the value, if the prior decedent died more than one (1) year but not more than two (2) years prior to the death of the decedent, or if the property was transferred to him by gift within the same period prior to his death;
c. Sixty percent (60%) of the value, if the prior decedent died more than two (2) years but not more than three (3) years prior to the death of the decedent, or if the property was transferred to him by gift within the same period prior to his death;
d. Forty percent (40%) of the value, if the prior decedent died more than three (3) years but not more than four (4) years prior to the death of the decedent, or if the property was transferred to him by gift within the same period prior to his death; and
e. Twenty percent (20%) of the value, if the prior decedent died more than four (4) years but not more than five (5) years prior to the death of the decedent, or if the property was transferred to him by gift within the same period prior to his death.
These deductions shall be allowed only where a donor’s tax, or estate tax imposed under Title III of the NIRC was finally determined and paid by or on behalf of such donor, or the estate of such prior decedent, as the case may be, and only in the amount finally determined as the value of such property in determining the value of the gift, or the gross estate of such prior decedent, and only to the extent that the value of such property is included in the decedent’s gross estate, and only if, in determining the value of the net estate of the prior decedent, no deduction is allowable under this Item, in respect of the property or properties given in exchange therefore. Where a deduction was allowed of any mortgage or other lien in determining the donor’s tax, or the estate tax of the prior decedent, which was paid in whole or in part prior to the decedent’s death, then the deduction allowable under this Item shall be reduced by the amount so paid. Such deduction allowable shall be reduced by an amount which bears the same ratio to the amounts allowed as deductions under Items 2, 3, 4 and 6 of this Subsection as the amount otherwise deductible under this Item bears to the value of the decedent’s estate. Where the property referred to consists of two (2) or more items, the aggregate value of such items shall be used for the purpose of computing the deduction.
6. Transfers for public use. – The amount of all bequests, legacies, devises or transfers to or for the use of the Government of the Republic of the Philippines or any political subdivision thereof, for exclusively public purposes.
7. The Family Home. – An amount equivalent to the current fair market value of the decedent’s family home: Provided, however, that if the said current fair market value exceeds Ten million pesos (P10,000,000), the excess shall be subject to estate tax.
Definition of Terms
7.1. Definition of terms
Family home – The dwelling house, including the land on which it is situated, where the husband and wife, or a head of the family, and members of their family reside, as certified to by the Barangay Captain of the locality. The family home is deemed constituted on the house and lot from the time it is actually occupied as a family residence and is considered as such for as long as any of its beneficiaries actually resides therein. (Arts. 152 and 153, Family Code)
For purposes of these Regulations, however, actual occupancy of the house or house and lot as the family residence shall not be considered interrupted or abandoned in such cases as the temporary absence from the constituted family home due to travel or studies or work abroad, etc.
In other words, the family home is generally characterized by permanency, that is, the place to which, whenever absent for business or pleasure, one still intends to return.
The family home must be part of the properties of the absolute community or of the conjugal partnership, or of the exclusive properties of either spouse depending upon the classification of the property (family home) and the property relations prevailing on the properties of the husband and wife. It may also be constituted by an unmarried head of a family on his or her own property. (Art. 156, Ibid.)
For purposes of availing of a family home deduction to the extent allowable, a person may constitute only one family home. (Art. 161, Ibid.)
Husband and Wife – Legally married man and woman.
Unmarried Head of a Family – An unmarried or legally separated man or woman with one or both parents, or with one or more brothers or sisters, or with one or more legitimate, recognized natural or legally adopted children living with and dependent upon him or her for their chief support, where such brothers or sisters or children are not more than twenty one (21) years of age, unmarried and not gainfully employed or where such children, brothers or sisters, regardless of age are incapable of self-support because of mental or physical defect, or any of the beneficiaries mentioned in Article 154 of the Family Code who is living in the family home and dependent upon the head of the family for legal support.
The beneficiaries of a family home are:
(1) The husband and wife, or the head of a family; and
(2) Their parents, ascendants, descendants including legally adopted children, brothers and sisters, whether the relationship be legitimate or illegitimate, who are living in the family home and who depend upon the head of the family for legal support. (Art. 154, Ibid)
7.2. Conditions for the allowance of family home as deduction from the gross estate:
7.2.1. The family home must be the actual residential home of the decedent and his family at the time of his death, as certified by the Barangay Captain of the locality where the family home is situated;
7.2.2. The total value of the family home must be included as part of the gross estate of the decedent; and
7.2.3. Allowable deduction must be in an amount equivalent to the current fair market value of the family home as declared or included in the gross estate, or the extent of the decedent’s interest (whether conjugal/community or exclusive property), whichever is lower, but not exceeding P10,000,000.
8. Amount received by heirs under Republic Act No. 4917. – Any amount received by the heirs from the decedent’s employer as a consequence of the death of the decedent-employee in accordance with Republic Act No. 4917 is allowed as a deduction provided that the amount of the separation benefit is included as part of the gross estate of the decedent.
9. Net share of the surviving spouse in the conjugal partnership or community property. – After deducting the allowable deductions appertaining to the conjugal or community properties included in the gross estate, the share of the surviving spouse must be removed to ensure that only the decedent’s interest in the estate is taxed.
SEC. 7. COMPUTATION OF THE NET ESTATE OF A DECEDENT WHO IS
A NON-RESIDENT ALIEN OF THE PHILIPPINES. – The value of the net estate of a decedent who is a non-resident alien in the Philippines shall be determined by deducting from the value of that part of his gross estate which at the time of his death is situated in the Philippines the following items of deductions:
1. Standard deduction. – A deduction in the amount of Five Hundred Thousand Pesos (P500,000) shall be allowed without need of substantiation. The full amount of P500,000 shall be allowed as deduction for the benefit of the decedent.
2. The proportion of the total losses and indebtedness which the value of such part bears to the value of his entire gross estate wherever situated. Losses and indebtedness shall include the following:
2.1. Claims against the estate.
2.2. Claims of the deceased against insolvent persons where the value of the interest therein is included in the value of the gross estate.
2.3. Unpaid mortgages, taxes and casualty losses.
The allowable deduction under this subsection shall be computed using the following formula:
[Phil Gross Estate / World Gross Estate] x [Item No. 2] = Allowable Deduction
3. Property previously taxed.
4. Transfers for public use.
5. Net share of the surviving spouse in the conjugal property or community property.
Unless otherwise provided in this section, the rules for the availment of deductions in the preceding section shall apply.
One can find sample computations on this forum