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Lawmaker seeks higher income tax exemption for K+12 parents

President Benigno S. Aquino III shares the stage with the students from the Center for Excellence (CENTEX) Elementary School for a group photo souvenir during the ceremonial signing of Republic Act No. 10533 or the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013 at the Rizal Ceremonial Hall of the Malaca?n Palace on Wednesday (May 15). The K to 12 program covers Kindergarten and 12 years of basic education (six years of primary education, four years of Junior High School, and two years of Senior High School) to provide sufficient time for mastery of concepts and skills, develop lifelong learners, and prepare graduates for tertiary education, middle-level skills development, employment, and entrepreneurship. In photo are House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte, Jr., and Senator Edgardo Angara. (MNS photo)

President Benigno S. Aquino III shares the stage with the students from the Center for Excellence (CENTEX) Elementary School for a group photo souvenir during the ceremonial signing of Republic Act No. 10533 or the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013 at the Rizal Ceremonial Hall of the Malaca?n Palace on Wednesday (May 15). The K to 12 program covers Kindergarten and 12 years of basic education (six years of primary education, four years of Junior High School, and two years of Senior High School) to provide sufficient time for mastery of concepts and skills, develop lifelong learners, and prepare graduates for tertiary education, middle-level skills development, employment, and entrepreneurship. In photo are House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte, Jr., and Senator Edgardo Angara. (MNS photo)

QUEZON CITY (Mabuhay) – A House member is seeking to increase the additional income tax exemption for each qualified dependent of a taxpayer from P25,000 to P50,000 to help ease the burden of parents affected by the K+12 education program.

Rep. Maria Carmen Zamora (1st District, Compostela Valley) said while individual income tax payers are already extended an additional exemption of P25,000 for each dependent not exceeding four, the advent of the K+12 curriculum of the Department of Education (DepEd) will negate the relief being provided by the tax break as the additional two years of basic education will certainly entail more expenses to parents who are also taxpayers.

“As such, there is a need for the government to help ease the financial burden of the extended new schooling curriculum by providing our parent-taxpayers with increased additional exemptions for their qualified dependents,” said Zamora.

The tax relief, if favorably considered, will generally redound to the benefit of the dependents’ education and answer for their other basic needs, while providing additional financial support to parents, particularly those who are single and have sole custody of the dependent child or children, according to Zamora.

The lawmaker’s proposal embodied in House Bill 241 seeks to amend Chapter Vll, Section 35 (B) of the National Internal Revenue Code (NIRC), as amended, so that there shall be allowed an additional exemption of P50,000 for each taxpayer’s dependent not exceeding four.

Presently, Section 35(B) of Republic Act 9504, which amended the NIRC, provides for an additional exemption of 25,000 for each taxpayer’s dependent not exceeding four. The additional exemption for dependents shall be claimed by only one of the spouses in the case of married individuals.

The law provides that in the case of legally separated spouses, only the spouse who has custody of the child or children may claim additional exemptions. Provided, that the total amount of additional exemptions that may be claimed by both shall not exceed the maximum additional exemptions herein allowed.

Based on the law, a “dependent” means a legitimate, illegitimate or legally adopted child chiefly dependent upon and living with the taxpayer if such dependent is not more than 21 years of age, unmarried and not gainfully employed or if such dependent, regardless of age, is incapable of self-support because of mental or physical defect.(MNS)

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