BEFORE THE UTAH STATE TAX COMMISSION
Petitioner, : FINDINGS OF FACT,
: CONCLUSIONS OF LAW,
: AND FINAL DECISION
COLLECTION DIVISION OF THE : Appeal No. 91-1261
UTAH STATE TAX COMMISSION, :
: Account No. XXXXX
STATEMENT OF CASE
This matter came before the Utah State Tax Commission for a formal hearing on XXXXX. Alan Hennebold, Presiding Officer, heard the matter for and on behalf of the Commission. XXXXX appeared for Petitioner.
Based upon the evidence and testimony presented at the hearing, the Tax Commission hereby makes its:
FINDINGS OF FACT
1. The tax in question is sales tax.
2. The periods in question are the third quarters of XXXXX and XXXXX.
3. Petitioner did not file its third quarter XXXXX sales tax report by the due date of XXXXX. On XXXXX, Respondent estimated Petitioner's tax liability at $$$$$ and assessed penalty in the amount of $$$$$, as well as interest. Respondent notified Petitioner of the foregoing assessment of tax, penalty and interest, which Petitioner paid. However, on XXXXX, Petitioner itself filed a sales tax return for the third quarter XXXXX, thereby establishing a tax liability of $$$$$. In light of Petitioner's increased tax liability, Respondent recomputed the interest and penalties which had already been assessed against Petitioner. The penalties, totaling 20%, were later reduced to 10% by Commission action.
2. Petitioner's third quarter XXXXX sales tax report was due on XXXXX, but was not submitted until XXXXX. The report, when filed, established a sales tax liability of $$$$$ which was not paid until XXXXX. Interest and a 10% late payment penalty were assessed against Petitioner.
3. Petitioner's failure to properly file and pay its third quarter XXXXX and XXXXX sales tax liability was due to the lack of expertise of its employees. Also, with respect to the third quarter XXXXX, Petitioner failed to pay the tax due with its return because of lack of funds. Petitioner has since employed experienced personnel to insure that future tax liability is properly reported and paid.
4. Commission records indicate penalties were previously imposed against Petitioner with respect to its third quarter XXXXX and second quarter XXXXX sales tax liability.
CONCLUSIONS OF LAW
Utah law authorizes imposition of a 10% penalty for late filing of sales tax returns. An additional 10% penalty is imposed for late payment of any tax liability. [Utah Code Ann. §59-1-401(1).]
The Tax Commission is granted authority to waive, reduce, or compromise penalties and interest upon a showing of reasonable cause. [Utah Code Ann. §59-1-401(8).]
DECISION AND ORDER
The Petitioner admits its failure to properly report and pay its sales tax liability for the third quarters of XXXXX and XXXXX. It attributes its failure to a lack of competent personnel, and asserts that it has taken steps to correct the problem in the future. However, Commission records indicate that Petitioner has failed to properly file and/or pay its sales tax liabilities on at least two occasions prior to the quarters in question. The Commission also notes that Petitioner has been granted a partial waiver in this matter, reducing the penalty assessed on the third quarter of XXXXX from $$$$$ to $$$$$.
Based on the foregoing, the Commission finds insufficient reason to further reduce the penalty assessed against Petitioner for the third quarters of XXXXX and XXXXX.
Petitioner's request for waiver is therefore denied. It is so ordered.
DATED this 25th day of March, 1992.
BY ORDER OF THE UTAH STATE TAX COMMISSION.
R. H. Hansen Roger O. Tew
Joe B. Pacheco S. Blaine Willes