COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE vs. METRO STAR SUPERAMA, INC.- Pre-Assessment Notice
Metro Star Superama was audited for taxable year 1999 and received a Preliminary 15-day Letter on November 15, 2001. On April 11, 2002, it received a Formal Letter of Demand dated April 3, 2002. Denying that it received a Pre-Assessment Notice and thus not accorded due process, Metro Star Superama filed a Petition with the CTA.
Was the Petitioner accorded the required due process?
NO. Since the Petitioner denied receipt of the Pre-Assessment Notice, the burden of proving the same shifts to the BIR. To raise the presumption of receipt, it must be shown that (a) the letter was properly addressed with postage prepaid and (b) that it was mailed. If receipt is denied, the BIR must then show actual receipt through presentation of the registry receipt or, if the same cannot be located, at least a certification from the Bureau of Posts.
The Court likewise added that the issuance of a Pre-Assessment Notice is a mandatory requirement save only on specified instances. The old rule laid down in CIR vs. Menguito that only the FAN is mandatory no longer applies since the same was ruled upon based on the old provision.