As we wrote earlier, from the Russian shoe company Ralf Ringer, the federal tax authorities want to recover about 1,5 billion rubles in tax fees, fines and penalties. The shoe manufacturer and retailer is trying to challenge the actions of the tax authorities through the Moscow Arbitration Court and gave his comments.
As Ralf Ringer explains, the claims of the tax authorities against the company appeared as a result of an on-site tax audit in December 2017, which concerned the period of operation of the shoe company for the period from 2014 to 2016, and the decision on which was made on November 25, 2021. The amount of taxes, fines and penalties charged to the company amounted to 3 billion 209 million rubles. The reason was the conclusion of the inspection, "that less materials and components used for the production of shoes were imported across the border than supplied." At the same time, the sole supplier of materials for AO Ralf Ringer was recognized as a related party. From which the tax authority actually concluded that there were no supplies of materials at all, and the costs and VAT deductions for all materials purchased by him during the 3 audited years were excluded from the costs of the manufacturer, reducing the taxable base. The company comments that “according to the logic of the tax authority, all shoes released in three years were released“ out of thin air ”.
On January 10, 2022, Ralf Ringer appealed the decision of the Federal Tax Service to the Moscow Department of the Federal Tax Service. On August 25, 2022, by the decision of the Federal Tax Service for Moscow, this complaint was partially satisfied, and the amount of claims was reduced to 1 billion 420 million, the supply of 56% of materials and components was recognized as valid.
The decision to charge additional taxes and penalties to Ralph Ringer JSC came into force, and the tax authority immediately began to enforce their collection by seizing the company's accounts and property.
It is noted that during the period of consideration of the claims of the Federal Tax Service No. 15, an independent examination was carried out, which confirmed that the norms for writing off materials per unit of product, in force at Ralf Ringer, correspond to generally accepted industry standards. “However, the tax authority did not take into account the results of the examination. At the same time, by its decision, the Moscow Department of the Federal Tax Service actually confirmed the reality of relations with the only supplier of materials, thereby refuting controllability, but did not answer the question of how shoes can be made from 56% of the required amount of materials,” the company comments.
Ralf Ringer appealed the decision of the tax authority to the central office of the Federal Tax Service. The complaint must be answered by December 7, 2022. In addition, the decision of the Federal Tax Service was appealed to the Moscow Arbitration Court, which is currently under consideration. The next meeting in the arbitration is scheduled for December 15, 2022.
Ralf Ringer points out that due to the long period of time from the moment of verification and additional assessment of taxes and fines, the tax authority has lost the right to claim them. Since the Tax Code clearly and unambiguously regulates the timing of the conduct and registration of the results of tax audits. It is impossible to check the taxpayer for years, and then for many months to consider his complaints, to a large extent causing damage to the taxpayer by the suspension of his condition.
On these grounds, Ralf Ringer disputes the legitimacy of the request of the Federal Tax Service for the payment of additional charges and the decision to enforce collection from the funds on the company's settlement accounts and its property in the Moscow Arbitration Court, where the case is now being considered. The next meeting is scheduled for December 22, 2022.
As part of the process, the consultants of Lemchik, Krupsky and Partners obtained interim measures by the court, suspending the claim and the decision pending the entry into force of the court decision.
Litigation with tax officials Ralf Ringer, already the second high-profile case in the field of violations of tax laws in the industry. This is the third year of litigation with the Federal Tax Service of the Zenden Group shoe holding, which is accused of deliberately splitting the business to evade taxes. The tax inspectorate bases its accusation on the fact that Zenden's counterparties (its franchisees), who purchase goods from it in bulk, use simplified taxation regimes. The scheme, which the tax authorities spotted, drew almost a billion in additional charges. At this stage, the court took the side of the tax inspectorate, but the company will challenge this decision.
Both enterprises of the Zenden Group and Ralf Ringer are included in the list of backbone enterprises and have a significant impact on the industry, for example, the number of employees of Ralf Ringer is more than 2 thousand people. At the same time, experts believe that the recovery from Ralf Ringer of the amount of 1,5 billion rubles. may lead to bankruptcy of the company.