More than half of professionals said they had no income

Some 63 percent of the professionals who filed a tax return in 2010 said they had no income.

That was a report from the Contraloría General de la República, which studied six years of tax activity involving lawyers, accountants, veterinarians, medical professionals and architects. The report was released Tuesday.

The Contraloría, the budgetary watchdog agency, said that 1.4 percent of those who filed returns paid 66 percent of the tax.

The report covers individuals and corporations in these professions. Those filing returns grew 15 percent from
7,924 in 2007 to 9,073 in 2010.

In 2007, the average professional taxpayer paid an average of 202,927 colons. In 2010, the amount was 298,024 colons or about $600.

The report said that 29,585 of 46,795 professionals reported no income and did not file a return in 2010. That is 63.2 percent, said the report.

Although the Contraloría is an agency of the legislature, the report comes at a time when the central government is trying to put through a 14 percent value-added tax. The central government seeks to extend the 14 percent value-added tax to professional services that are not now covered.

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