Saturday, March 6, 2010

Dealing with Hacienda

Solar Blog Entry - Dealing with Hacienda

Dealing with the Puerto Rico tax office Hacienda is an important element of an alternative energy installation. The tax credit for tax year 2009 is 50%, which we expect to qualify for.

It was important for us for our file to be opened in 2009, as many of the required documents took time to obtain and were not finally submitted until early January 2010. All of these documents need to be submitted in person to office 624B of the Divisíon de Opiniones Administrativas y Legislación del Negociado de Asistencia Contributiva y Consultas Especializada (that mouthful translates roughly to the Division of Administrative Opinions and Legislation of the Office of Tax Assistance and Specialized Consultations). Some are submitted by the installer and others by the customer, as I summarize below.

1. First, they require demonstration that the taxpayer/customer has no debts to any government office or agency. For this, they require Certificaciones Negativas de Deuda, or Negative Debt Certificates from ...
- Department of Hacienda (tax office)
This can be obtained from the local Hacienda office or online from
- Centro de Recaudaciín de Ingresos Municipales, or CRIM (Municiple Property Tax Office), which refer to property taxes.
This must be obtained from the local CRIM office (have fun :-)).
- Departamento de Trabajo y Recursos Humanos (Department of Labor and Human Resources), which requires communicating with the central office in San Juan but can be carried out via FAX. This is automatic for a home installation, if you are not a business owner and have no relationship with this department.
We discovered that our local office in Arecibo could not provide this, and we called the main office in San Juan at 787-754-5818 who asked us to FAX the required information (photocopy of my drivers license and social security number along with an address of where to send the certification) to 787-281-5649.
- Corporación del Fondo del Seguro del Estado (State Insurance Fund Corporation), which, for a modest annual fee, provides accident and injury coverage for home and business owners who contract work on their property.
We went to our local Fondo office for this certification.
- ASUME, which is the office that monitors legal obligations such as child support and alimony payments.
We received this certification at the local ASUME office, which was the most efficient of all the offices we visited.
- and if the installation is for a business, such certifications must be obtained from its investors and partners who own over 25% of the company's shares or represent over 25% of its operations.
Happily, we did not have to do this one.
2. Second, you have to deliver certification of tax filings, which are obtained from Hacienda. If there is a partnership involved, such as for a business with investors and/or partners, they must also obtain these certifications.

3. The Installer should be responsible to submit the Photovoltaic Equipment Certifications (Certificados de de Equipos Fotovoltaicos) filed by the Administración de Asuntos Energéticos (Energy Issues Administration of Hacienda) (AAE).

4. The Installer Certificate must be provided, same as that issued by the AAE. This is also responsibility of the Installer.

5. The Installer should submit a "Design and Installation of Photovoltaic System" certificate, again issued by the AAE.

6. A copy of the Commercial Invoice from the Installer (i.e. the receipt for the installation, including both parts and labor, from the Installer to the Customer).

7. Any other document the petitioner considers relevant.

All of these documents must be delivered within a period of 60 days. Our process began December 14 and ended on January 25. Once delivered, Hacienda evaluates the case and submits a determination of whether the project qualifies for the tax credit. We are currently awaiting that determination, which we hope to have in time for filing our taxes in April.

My next post will summarize the first month of performance of our photovoltaic system.

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