Tax is assessed on a fiscal-year, self-assessment basis, which may or may not match the calendar year.
The due date for filing the profits and the minimum notional income tax return is during the second week of the fifth month after the fiscal year-end. Tax returns are filed electronically.
Payment of tax
Instalment payments on account of profit tax must be made in the course of the tax year. The instalment payments must be made on a monthly basis, beginning in the first month after the due date of filing of the tax returns.
Penalties derived from tax infractions may be applied by tax authorities, as follows:
- Failing to file the tax return: Fines range between ARS 200 and ARS 400.
- Tax omission: Fine of 100% of unpaid taxes.
- Tax avoidance: Fines range between two and six times the avoided tax.
- Certain tax infractions may be penalised by closing the business premises for two to six days. In addition, fines ranging between ARS 3,000 and ARS 100,000 may be imposed.
- Simple evasion: Entities or individuals evading payment of social security contributions or withholdings, or both, payable to the tax authorities under the social security regime, through deceitful declarations, malicious concealment, or any fraudulent or deceitful procedure, either through action or omission, in excess of ARS 200,000 per fiscal period, shall be punished with two to six years’ imprisonment. Such amount will be ARS 1,500,000 in the case of taxes, it being applied by tax and by fiscal year.
- If the infringement qualifies as aggravated evasion: Imprisonment could be extended from three years and six months to nine years in certain situations.
Interest on late payments
Late payment of taxes is subject to compensatory interest. The applicable rate is periodically updated by the tax authorities (3.6% for the first quarter of 2020). Interest will start accruing on the day after the filing due date.
Tax audit process
The tax authorities are entitled to audit taxpayers within the statute of limitations period. Audits consist of revising the calculation of any national or provincial tax based on formal requirements. Where any assessment is issued by the tax authorities, the taxpayer is entitled to either accept it or file a claim. Assessments can be done under a real or estimated basis, depending on the specific case and the information that the taxpayers have on their transactions. In the case that the taxpayers do not accept the assessment during the administrative period, they can claim against Tax Courts before any judicial process.
There are no specific provisions about e-auditing.
Statute of limitations
The actions and powers of the tax authorities to determine and require payment of federal taxes, and to implement and enforce fines and closures planned, prescribe:
- five years in the case of registered taxpayers, as well as in the case of unregistered taxpayers who are not legally required to register with the AFIP; or that, having that obligation, had not fulfilled them and, spontaneously, regularise their situation, and
- ten years in the case of unregistered taxpayers.
The statute of limitations may be extended to ten years in certain provinces with respect to provincial taxes.
Topics of focus for tax authorities
Topics of focus for tax authorities include the following:
- Increasing cooperation: Tax information exchange.
- Tax treaty network still under review.
- Tax treaty benefits: Substance-over-form principle.
- High penalties and tax criminal law.
- Transfer pricing (inter-company charges and export of commodities to international intermediaries).
- Wealth tax: Applicability on branches.
- Corporate income tax: Application of inflationary adjustment.