Report social media influencer evading taxes, get P1-M reward from BIR

Former Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) examiner Mon Abrea said Monday anyone who will report a social media influencer avoiding paying taxes could get a P1 million cash from the government.

“‘Yun ‘yung hindi masyado alam ng publiko. Tayo mismo pwede kumita…‘pag sinabi natin o tinuro natin ‘yung mga kasama natin na mukhang hindi nagbabayad ng buwis. (That’s what people don’t know much about. We can actually earn…when we report fellow citizens who seem to be evading taxes),” Abrea told “Agenda” on One News.

On 16, 2021, the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) issued Revenue Memorandum Circular No. 97-2021 – Taxation of Any Income Received by Social Media Influencers.

“The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) has been receiving reports that certain social media influencers have not been paying their income taxes despite earning huge income from the different social media platforms. There are also reports that they are not registered with the BIR or are registered under different tax types or line of business but are also not declaring their earnings from social media platforms for tax purposes. Whatever may be the reasons, it is now the most opportune time to discuss the tax obligations of these social media influencers,” according to the RMC signed by Internal Revenue Commissioner Caesar Dulay.

BIR said social media influencers are categorized as self-employed individuals or persons engaged in trade or business as sole proprietors. BIR said the following sources of income that are taxable:

  • YouTube Partner Program
  • Sponsored Social & Blog Posts
  • Display Advertising

Report social media influencer evading taxes, get P1-M from BIR

  • Becoming a Brand Representative/Ambassador
  • Affiliate Marketing
  • Co-creating Product Lines
  • Promoting Own Products
  • Photo & Video Sales
  • Digital Courses, Subscriptions, eBooks
  • Podcasts and Webinars

Abrea said social media influencers need to settle their tax obligations just like artists, media practitioners, self-employed, and others. They are also obliged to register with the BIR for their tax obligations.

“It’s easy to trace them, it’s just like a bank account. It’s easy to type your name in the system of the BIR,” he said in a mix of English and Filipino.

“The easiest basis here is when you don’t have a TIN (tax identification number), or you are not registered. This is for sure tax evasion because you earn a huge amount but you are not registered,” he added.

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