First of two Costa Rican tax forms due today

Today is the deadline for the hated D-151 tax form that is due at the Ministerio de Hacienda.

The form is a list of income and expenses for the last fiscal year. The form must be filed by anyone who is listed as a taxpayer with the ministry’s Dirección General de Tributación.

The form is a runner up to the D-101 that reports total income and expenses. That is due Dec. 15.

The D-151 is supposed to list any income from a single source that totals more than 2.5 million colons or about $4,750. Salaries that are reported to the Caja Costarricense de Segurio Social are not included.

Taxpayers are supposed to report expenditures that total 2.5 million colons to a single Costa Rican source during the fiscal year, October to last Sept. 30. The amount runs up quickly, so an expat building a house almost certainly will have reportable expenses.

Many expats do not have income from a Costa Rican source, but they may have a corporation that is doing business here.

Also reportable are expenditures that total more then 50,000 colons to professionals, like physicians or dentists. That’s basically one doctor’s visit.

If the expenses are not reported, they cannot be used as deductions on the expat’s or the expat’s corporation’s tax return.

This is the way the tax agency keeps track of income. And failing to file the D-151 can bring a 4 million-colon fine.

But there is a trick for those who are caught short today. An accountant can file a rough report by today’s deadline and then update it later with correct amounts to avoid sanctions.

These forms have to be filed online, and usually it makes sense to let a professional do it.

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