FBR’s Chairman Says Punishments Still Valid in Month of January

News Desk3 months ago
FBR's Chairman Says Punishments Still Valid in Month of January

Punishments Still valid in Month of January

Chairman Malik Amjed Zubair Tiwana of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) refuted claims that the FBR has postponed the process of blocking mobile SIM cards and phones, along with disconnecting electricity and gas for non-filers. Tiwana clarified that the initiative has not been delayed until March 2024 and is scheduled to commence in the current month.

Regarding field formations’ reported strikes against FBR restructuring, FBR Member Inland Revenue (Operations) Mir Badshah Khan Wazir stated that there is no strike, dismissing rumors as baseless. It’s worth noting that earlier reports suggested a potential delay in stringent actions against non-filers until March.

FBR Warnings to Non-Filers in Pakistan: 2023

January 2023

Initial Press Release: FBR issues a press release urging potential non-filers to register and file their income tax returns before the deadline of June 30th, 2023. The release highlights the benefits of compliance, including avoiding penalties and enjoying various tax incentives.

Social Media Campaign: FBR launches a social media campaign utilizing the slogan “File your return, avoid the burn” to raise awareness about the consequences of non-filing.

February 2023

Targeted Notifications: FBR begins sending personalized notifications to identified non-filers highlighting their potential tax liability and urging them to comply.

Also Read: FBR has introduced fresh taxes on mobile phones.

March 2023

Increased Media Coverage: FBR intensifies its media campaign, partnering with television and radio channels to broadcast informative talks and advertisements emphasizing the importance of filing returns.

Focus on Specific Sectors: FBR targets specific sectors with high numbers of non-filers, such as real estate and professionals, with tailored awareness campaigns and educational workshops.

April 2023

Deadline Extension: Due to public demand and technical glitches, FBR extends the deadline for filing returns to September 30th, 2023. However, the tone of the warnings becomes more stern, emphasizing the possibility of legal action against non-compliant individuals.

Enforcement Measures Announced: FBR announces the initiation of enforcement measures against non-filers, including property freeze, bank account blocking, and travel restrictions.

May 2023

Public Service Announcements: FBR releases impactful public service announcements featuring prominent personalities urging individuals to fulfill their civic duty and file their returns.

Dedicated Complaint Platform: FBR establishes a dedicated online platform for non-filers to address their concerns and seek guidance regarding the filing process.

June 2023

Final Warning before Deadline: As the revised deadline approaches, FBR issues a final public warning emphasizing the severe consequences of non-filing, including hefty penalties and even criminal prosecution.

Special Camp for Last-Minute Filers: FBR sets up special camps across the country to assist filers facing difficulties during the final days before the deadline.

Also Read: Salary Tax Calculator Pakistan | Pakistan Salary Tax Calculator

July 2023

Post-Deadline Crackdown: After the deadline, FBR intensifies its crackdown on non-filers, utilizing data analytics and tax profiling to identify and penalize evaders.

Focus on Repeat Offenders: FBR prioritizes the prosecution of repeat non-filers, sending a strong message of deterrence and encouraging future compliance.

August 2023 onwards

Ongoing Enforcement and Awareness: FBR continues its enforcement efforts against non-filers while constantly reminding the public about the importance of registering and filing returns.

Focus on Tax Education: FBR emphasizes tax education, collaborating with educational institutions and community organizations to promote tax literacy and build a culture of compliance.

Overall Level of Compliance

No official data has been released by the FBR regarding the increase in filers after the warning campaign. However, media reports suggest a moderate rise in the number of tax returns filed compared to previous years.

It’s likely that the full impact on compliance won’t be clear until the next deadline for filing returns in June 2024.

Effectiveness of Enforcement Measures

The FBR claims to have successfully blocked bank accounts, frozen properties, and imposed travel restrictions on several non-filers in response to the warnings.

However, the full scope and effectiveness of these enforcement measures remain uncertain due to limited transparency and ongoing legal proceedings.

Some experts suggest that the effectiveness of these measures might be hampered by bureaucratic inefficiencies and potential legal challenges.

Also Read: FBR’s Rewards Scheme for Law Enforcement in Anti-Smuggling

Specific Outcomes for Individual Non-Filers

Individual outcomes vary depending on the severity of non-compliance and the FBR’s assessment of each case.

Penalties can range from fines to imprisonment, depending on the amount of tax evaded and the individual’s cooperation with the FBR.

Some non-filers might choose to settle with the FBR by paying penalties and back taxes to avoid further legal action.

Overall

While the full impact of the FBR’s warnings is still unfolding, it’s evident that the campaign has increased awareness about tax compliance in Pakistan. However, the effectiveness of enforcement measures and their impact on individual non-filers require further data and analysis.

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