The Ministerio de Hacienda maintains a special computer program for payment of taxes online.
This is the EDDI-7 system. With it, merchants can file the monthly sales tax reports, D-104, and everyone can file at the end of the year the annual income tax return.
The only problem is that the computer system is updated continually, and users have to download the lengthy program repeatedly. In a less technical description, some say the program is inhabited by demons.
One taxpayer found he could not file the annual income tax report or the monthly sales tax report last Dec. 15, the deadline.
The ministry server was not responding well. So the taxpayer was subject to fines for late filing.
That was just about enough, so the taxpayer filed an appeal with the Sala IV constitutional court.
In a decision released Tuesday, the court said that the man did not have to pay a fine for failing to file his sales tax report in a timely fashion. But he still was on the hook for the annual income tax report because he had the option of filing the report on paper with a number of banks and agencies that would have accepted it.
The sales tax report can only be filed online.
The court noted that there were 95,208 annual income tax returns filed from Friday, Dec. 13, to Monday, Dec. 15. The flood of filings appears to have overwhelmed the system.
The ministry’s Dirección General de Tributación said it would accept the court ruling and void any penalties assessed for late filing Dec. 16. Anyone who has paid a fine already can get credit or a refund, the agency said in a terse two-paragraph statement.