The Tax Appeal Tribunal has ruled that a taxpayer’s right of objection or appeal is not waived by the fact that the taxpayer has paid the assessment being subsequently disputed.
The company paid the full liability following an additional assessment issued by the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS.
However, following a review of its position vis-a-vis the assessment, the company lodged an appeal at the Tax Appeal Tribunal challenging the assessment as invalid and defective in law.
At the appeal, FIRS argued that having paid the liability, the taxpayer had waived its right to appeal the assessment and therefore the appeal should be struck off as being an academic exercise since the company was no longer aggrieved.
Conversely, the company argued that payment of an assessment issued by the FIRS does not foreclose a taxpayer’s right of appeal particularly where the notice of appeal prima facie contained triable grounds of appeal and the validity of an assessment was in contention.
The Tribunal held that it has additional powers to examine the validity of an assessment regardless of the additional assessment has been paid. This implies that payment of a tax liability arising from an assessment does not foreclose a taxpayer from contesting the assessment.