Tax Arbitrage

The introduction in the Portuguese law of arbitration in tax issues, as an alternative to judicial resolution of conflicts in the tax area, has three main goals:

strengthen the effective protection of the rights and legally protected interests of individuals;
give a faster resolution of disputes between the tax to the taxpayer;
reduce the pending cases in administrative and tax courts.

Arbitration is a way of solving a dispute through a neutral and impartial – the arbitrator – chosen by the parties or appointed by the Administrative Arbitration Centre and whose decision has the same legal value as the court rulings.

In order to give the necessary speed to tax arbitration proceedings, a process is adopted without special formalities in accordance with the principle of autonomy of arbitrators in conducting the process, and is set a time limit of six months to issue a ruling, with possibility of extension that never exceed six months.

The competence of arbitral tribunals cover the evaluation of the declaration of illegality of settlement of taxes, reverse charge, withholding and payment on account, the declaration of illegality of acts of determining taxable, acts of determination taxable and acts of asset values and setting, as well as the assessment of any issue of fact or law on the draft settlement, where the law does not ensure the right to deduct the claim referred above.

It is accepted as a general rule the irreversible aspect of the decision rendered by the Arbitration Courts, however this does not preclude the possibility of an appeal to the Constitutional Court, in the cases that the decision refuse the application of any rule on the grounds of unconstitutionality or apply a norm whose constitutionality has been raised as well as the appeal to the Supreme Administrative Court in some cases.

The institution of arbitration does not mean the non legal act of the tax process, as it is forbidden to resort to equity, the arbitrators should judge according to established law.

tgs has on its board of referees Tax professionals who can help you solve as an alternative way instead of judicial settlement, your conflicts in the tax area.