BEFORE THE UTAH STATE TAX COMMISSION
Petitioner : FINDINGS OF FACT,
: CONCLUSIONS OF LAW
v. : AND FINAL DECISION
: Appeal No. 89-1653
COLLECTION DIVISION OF THE :
UTAH STATE TAX COMMISSION :
: Account No. XXXXX
STATEMENT OF CASE
This matter came before the Utah State Tax Commission pursuant to the Utah Administrative Procedures Act for a formal hearing on XXXXX, before Joseph G. Linford, Presiding Officer. Petitioner was represented by XXXXX. No one representing Respondent appeared.
After reviewing the evidence and arguments of the parties in the record and the recommendation of the presiding officer, the Tax Commission hereby makes its:
FINDINGS OF FACT
1. The tax in question is sales and use tax.
2. The periods in question are the third and fourth quarters of XXXXX, the first, second, and fourth quarters of XXXXX, All four quarters of XXXXX and XXXXX, the first quarter of XXXXX, and the Second and third quarters of XXXXX.
3. Petitioner requests a waiver of the penalties and interest assessed in this case. Petitioner bases this on the fact that Petitioner was not aware that penalties would be as high as they are because Petitioner was allegedly told by an employee of the Tax Commission that penalties would be $$$$$ instead of $$$$$ per quarter.
4. Petitioner testified at the hearing that the reason sales tax had not been paid by Petitioner for the lengthy periods of time involved was because Petitioner "let it slip".
CONCLUSIONS OF LAW
1. Utah Code Ann. §§59-1-401 and59-1-402 provide that penalties and interest shall be imposed for the late filing and payment of sales tax. Generally a $50.00 fine is assessed for the late payment of taxes and another $50.00 fine is assessed for the late filing of returns. This is what occurred in this case.
2. Utah Code Ann. §59-1-401(8) provides that the Commission may, upon reasonable cause shown, waive or reduce the penalties and interest assessed under the above statutes.
3. Such reasonable cause has not been shown in this case. Petitioner was late in filing and paying its sales taxes repeatedly over a long period of time. Petitioner has given no substantial reason for this problem. The fact that Petitioner was under the impression that penalties would be for a smaller amount than they are is irrelevant. The amount of the penalty should not be the basis of the taxpayer's decision whether or not to file and pay taxes on time. Petitioner's testimony and everything in the file indicates that it has been all too easy for Petitioner over a long period of time to ignore the payment of taxes and put that off in favor of other things which Petitioner felt were more important than its obligations under the law.
DECISION AND ORDER
Based upon the foregoing, it is the decision and order of the Utah State Tax Commission that Petitioner's request for waiver of penalties and interest be denied.
DATED this 17 day of May, 1990.
BY ORDER OF THE UTAH STATE TAX COMMISSION.
R. H. Hansen Roger O. Tew
Joe B. Pacheco G. Blaine Davis