Depressed in New Mexico? You Must Still Pay Taxes
- Dec 31, 2015 | Gail Cole
A New Mexico business that booked package deals at golf resorts in New Mexico in 2008 and 2009 was found liable for penalties and interest on taxes not paid. The owner of the business claimed she failed to remit gross receipts taxes for 2008 and 2009 because she was “experiencing personal problems and … dealing with depression issues.” While she did not dispute the amount of taxes owed (once the proper amount owed was determined), she requested that penalties and interest be abated on the unpaid taxes because of the state of her health.
Under New Mexico law (188.8.131.52), certain situations “may indicate that a taxpayer has not been negligent or in disregard of rules and regulations.” The state is permitted to take circumstances into account “in deciding whether to assess civil penalty.” Prolonged illness or injury may be a valid circumstance.
The New Mexico Taxation and Revenue Department does not dispute that the owner was suffering from depression. However, it determined that “there was not sufficient evidence that her illness rendered her incapable of taking care of the Taxpayer’s [the business'] taxes, especially since the Taxpayer still managed to file its federal income taxes. Therefore, the Taxpayer was negligent and in disregard of the tax law.” Penalties and interest were properly assessed.
Additional information is available in the Decision and Order, In the Matter of Golf New Mexico/Golf West.
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