Making Sense of The BIR’s E-Filing System

Consider this post a continuation of sorts of the entries I did recently on the BIR (Bureau of Internal Revenue) registration and taxation for (part-time) freelancers. To be specific, I’ll be tackling here about the e-filing system recently introduced by the BIR that has caused much confusion, frustration, and a lot of quite negative sentiments against the agency. (as if it has not been getting enough of those already, but that’s another story)

It took me quite a while myself to finally understood how these things work, something I finally figured out quite recently. With that knowledge in mind, I’m happy to help you understand what it is all about.

Unless you have been living under the rock during the past months, I suppose you already know that the BIR mandated that taxpayers should be registered in its online system as it is going to do away with manual forms. Admittedly, it is a noble endeavor to bring about much needed convenience in filing taxes. However, it was implemented haphazardly without a longer transition period in place, causing many problems, especially during the period of filing annual income taxes last April. Thankfully, the dust has settled now and I, at least, got a better understanding of how this new system would work, thanks in part to a recent visit at my Revenue District Office. (RDO)

First things first, the BIR actually has two online systems in place: the eFPS which caters to large taxpayers, (individual and corporate ones that are up to the 20000th rank) local government units, stock brokers, and the like; and the eBIRForms which other individual and non-individual taxpayers fall under. In the case of freelancers, we would be using eBIRForms.

eBIR

The first thing you need to do to set up your online account for the eBIRForms at http://ebirforms.bir.gov.ph. Once completed, you would be asked to go to the RDO where you registered to submit a printed copy of the email confirmation of your eBIRForms account registration, 2 valid IDs, and a letter of intent that you wish to register to eBIRForms. (I know, the letter of intent thing is kinda silly but what can we do?) If you will have someone do that task for you, of course you need to provide a letter of authorization.

I mentioned previously by which you download the eBIRForms zip file to install the program on your computer which will generate the tax forms you need as well as the calculation of the taxes. Once you are done filling out the details, you click the “submit” button and it will pop up a screen that takes you to your online eBIRForms account which would then reflect that you successfully filed the form online.

If for some reason you are unable to access the online account, the BIR has made it available as an option for you to email the forms. Please refer to this circular (as hyperlinked) for information on the email addresses as well as the format of the subject when sending the file via email.

If there is payment to be made, you would have to do the efiling first then print the online return and the email confirmation then go to one of the authorized banks to make a manual payment.

I hope this follow-up entry is of big help to your current efiling woes. As always, for further questions or concerns, it is best to get in touch with the BIR, though I’ll try to answer them as much as I can based on what I know so far.

For the meantime, let us all do our part and be responsible citizens.

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