Miss Universe 2015 is not exempted from paying taxes on her winnings from the 64th edition of the most anticipated pageant in the world. Tax commissioner of the Philippines has indicated that Pia Wurtzbach should pay taxes from the earnings that she won as the latest Miss Universe. Pia Wurtzbach is just the latest international celebrities that have been slapped with mandatory tax liabilities even if she brought another pride to her country as the 3rd Filipina woman to win the most coveted crown.
The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), which is the main governing body in the Philippine government's tax regulation is gaining another attention to the public for its treatment to the country's modern heroes. These are entertainers, athletes, professional gamers, and all other Filipinos who won major international competitions. BIR created outrage to the public, in particular for those fans of past winners from major international competition. This is mainly due to existing taxation laws in the Philippines that is not yet been amended by lawmakers who are now busy concentrating on their campaign strategies. Pia Wurtzbach will be discussing the manner with the administrators of MUO regarding her financial statements that will be legally presented to the Philippine government's taxation department.
|Kim Henares is waiting for Pia Wurtzbach to pay for her winning tax from MUO|
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As based from Republic Act No. 7549: Pia Wurtzbach situation falls on this civil code of the Philippines. As a reigning Miss Universe, she is not exempted because the civil code says that "an act exempting all prizes and awards gained from local and international sports tournaments and competitions from the payment of income and other forms of taxes and for other purposes".
The Republic Act No. 7549 was authored by former Congressman Leonardo B. Fugoso
As based in section 1 of the code, all awards and prizes granted to all competitors from both local and international competitions that are held in the Philippines or abroad will mandate their donors to deduct the taxes from their gross income. This means that MUO should deduct the gross income to Pia Wurtzbach and then pay it to the Philippine government for mandatory compliance.
In the Philippines, this is a civil law that have had successfully passed by both the Senate and the Congress that represents an existing legal right, privilege, protection, or sanctions to protect the interest of the public. This is a law that is signed by the President of the Philippines after the lawmakers approved the bill into a new law.
If Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach or the Miss Universe Organization (MUO) fails to comply with the requirements provided by the Philippine government, any of the entrants will be facing legal offenses. This means that Pia Wurtzbach will be filed with tax evasion if she fails to pay her liabilities to the Philippine government.
Your favorite Miss Universe will be imprisoned due to this particular law in the Philippines due to that particular law.
This means that Miss Globe 2015 Ann Colis, Miss Earth 2015 Angela Ong, Miss International Queen 2015 Trixie Maristela, Miss Scuba International 2015 Cindy Madumma, and Miss Tourism Queen International Leren Mae Bautista will be also at risk for being imprisoned if they fail to pay their winning taxes.
Heartbreak for modern Philippine heroes
Past Filipino winners cry foul over the mandatory tax liabilities that were extracted from their winnings in their respective international competitions. Most athletes and entertainers who won international competitions were dismayed by this provision. They feel violated and insulted from the decisions made by the BIR over their mandatory tax liabilities from their earnings from the major competitions.
There were also some athletes who were already been required to pay taxes even at the airports. Some trophies are made up of valuable minerals that is worth hundreds, thousands, or even millions worth of bucks. Even winning competitors who even have less or no money that came from home are required to pay for taxes at the airport because they are carrying a valuable item that is not made in the Philippines. The sad truth is that winning competitors who made pride for their country can be imprisoned just arriving home.
Philippine taxation laws
The Philippines have one of the highest taxation regulations in Asia or probably the world. Personal income tax is measured to at least 32%, the second highest in the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nation). Corporate Income tax is the highest in ASEAN and one of the highest in Asia.
Taxation rates in the Philippines have been responsible for creating a financial burden for all Filipinos, slashing the opportunity to earn to build a brighter future. Most individuals, residents, and corporations have been struggling to seek for alternative ways to earn in order to just comply with the taxation policies.
Filipinos who are earning at least 10,000 to 30,000 Php (250 - 750 USD), they should pay 500 (10 USD) plus 10%. For those earning between 30,000 to 70,000 Php (750 - 1, 750 USD), tax liability of 2,500 (50 USD) or 15% should be paid. 70,000 to 140,000 (1,750 - 3100 USD) should pay 8,500 php or 20% of gross should be paid to the government. 140,000 - 250,000 (3100 to 5,000 USD) will have to pay 22,500 Php (more or less 500 USD) or 25% tax. 250,000 - 500,000 Php (5,000 to 10,000 USD) pays 50,000 (10,000 USD) plus 30% tax. And for 500,000 Php and above or (10,000 USD), they should pay 125,000 or 3,000 USD plus 32% in monthly taxes.
If Pia won $30,000 USD or 1.5 Million Php as her title cash prize, she should have to pay at least 125,000 Php or 3,000 USD. Her crown is worth $300,000 (13.2 Million Php), so she should pay 4.2 Million Php or 96,000 USD. Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach could be paying for an estimated total of 4.325 for just being as Miss Universe. This legal situation can probably happen in the Philippines.
Outrage and criticism
Social media websites are now calling the attention of Pia's supporters regarding their reactions on the recent mandatory compliance towards her. The money that should have been the answer to improves the life of Pia can just go to waste because she will not be benefiting the rewards that were made out of her hardships during the pageant.
There are numerous memes and caricatures that are now circulating in various social media as well as in the general public. Pia's wide fan base are mostly in dismay over the current taxation rulings, stating that the payments will just proceed to the corrupt hands of the Philippine officials. Since the Philippines has been struggling to wipe up corruption, the move against Pia is said to be one of the worst-case scenarios that could happen to her because she may be giving her money to unlawful officials.