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  • Interpretation
  • No.237
  • Date
  • 1989/03/17
  • Issue
    • Is there a contradiction with the Constitution when the deadline for issuing a uniform invoice is the date of payment collection, but the uniform invoice is issued on the date specified on the accepted post-dated check?
  • Holding
    •        A check is essentially a financial bill of payment, and may be used as a substitute for cash as a means of payment.  Paragraph 2 of Article 128 of the Act of Negotiable Instruments prescribes: “The holder shall not present for payment prior to the date of drawing indicated on the check”.  However, a check shall still be payable on demand after the date of drawing specified on the check, as provided in Paragraph 1 of said Article. Article 17 of the Rules for Using Uniform Invoices amended by the Ministry of Finance on September 20, 1970, provides: “According to the Table of Business Tax Classification and Calculation, when the deadline for issuing a uniform invoice is the date of payment collection, the uniform invoice may be issued on the date specified on the accepted post-dated check”.  The aforesaid is prescribed in consideration of the interests of business operators who receive checks prior to the date specified thereupon, and conforms to the legislative purpose of Paragraph 1 of Article 12 of the Business Tax Act at the time and does not contradict Article 23 of the Constitution.
  • Reasoning
    •        A profit-seeking enterprise, when conducting business, shall issue uniform invoices per Article 12 of the Business Tax Act.  A check, being a note of payment, can be used in place of cash payment.  Paragraph 2 of Article 128 of the Act of Negotiable Instruments prescribes that: “The holder shall not present for payment prior to the date of drawing indicated on the check”.  However, a check shall still be payable on demand after the date of drawing specified on the check, as provided in Paragraph 1 of said Article.
      
    •        The rule for issuing an invoice by a business engaged in trading is formulated on an accrual basis.  In principle, the deadline for issuing an invoice depends on the time of shipping, provided where payment is made prior to the shipping, the invoice shall be first issued accordingly.  The aforesaid is prescribed in the Table of Business Tax Classification and Calculation.  In such circumstances, where payment for goods is made by check prior to the specified date thereupon, the check, as a substitute for cash, may be a means of payment for goods. Article 17 (Article 16 of the Rules currently in force) of the Rules for Using Uniform Invoices amended by the Ministry of Finance on September 20, 1970, provides: “According to the Table of Business Tax Classification and Calculation, when the deadline for issuing a uniform invoice is the date of payment collection, the uniform invoice may be issued on the date specified on the accepted post-dated check”.  Since after the date specified on the check, the check is still payable at sight, apparently the aforesaid is provided for in consideration of the interests of business operators who receive checks prior to the date specified thereupon, and conforms to the legislative purpose of Paragraph 1 of Article 12 of the Business Tax Act at the time and does not contradict Article 23 of the Constitution.
      
    •        The petitioner alleged that Article 44 of the Tax Levy Act contradicted the Constitution.  In substance, the dispute was over whether a belatedly issued uniform invoice violated said Article and whether Article 48-1 of said Act should apply in such case, not whether or how the aforesaid rule contradicts the Constitution and thus is beyond the scope of Interpretation in the subject case.  It is hereby also explained. 
      
    • *Translated by Dr. C.Y. Huang of Tsar & Tsai Law Firm.
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