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Case: REV. FR. CASIMIRO LLADOC v.

CIR and CTA (14 SCRA 202) Date: June 16, 1965 Ponente: J. Paredes Facts: In 1957, the M.B. Estate, Inc. in Bacolod City donated P10,000 in case to Rev. Fr. Crispin Ruiz, the then parish priest of Victorias, Negros Occidental and the predecessor of Rev. Fr. Casimiro Lladoc, for the construction of a new Catholic Church. The total amount was actually spent for the purpose intended. On March 1958, M.B. Estate filed a donors gift tax return. Subsequently, on April 1960, the CIR issued an assessment for donees gift tax in the amount of P1,370 including surcharges, interest of 1% monthly from May 1958 to June 1960 and the compromise for the late filing of the return against the Catholic Parish of Victorias, Negros Occidental of which Lladoc was a priest. Lladoc protested and moved to reconsider but it was denied. He then appealed to the CTA, in his petition for review, he claimed that at the time of the donation, he was not the parish priest, thus, he is not liable. Moreover, he asserted that the assessment of the gift tax, even against the Roman Catholic Church, would not be valid, for such would be a clear violation of the Constitution. The CTA ruled in favor of the CIR. Hence, the present petition. Issue: WON donees gift tax should be paid Held: Yes. Ratio: Section 22 (3), Art. VI of the Constitution of the Philippines, exempts from taxation cemeteries, churches and parsonages or convents, appurtenant thereto, and all lands, buildings, and improvements used exclusively for religious purposes. The exemption is only from the payment of taxes assessed on such properties enumerated, as property taxes, as contra distinguished from excise taxes. In the present case, what the Collector assessed was a donee's gift tax; the assessment was not on the properties themselves. It did not rest upon general ownership; it was an excise upon the use made of the properties, upon the exercise of the privilege of receiving the properties. Manifestly, gift tax is not within the exempting provisions of the section just mentioned. A gift tax is not a property tax, but an excise tax imposed on the transfer of property by way of gift inter vivos, the imposition of which on property used exclusively for religious purposes, does not constitute an impairment of the Constitution. As well observed by the learned respondent Court, the phrase "exempt from taxation," as employed in the Constitution should not be interpreted to mean exemption from all kinds of taxes. And there being no clear, positive or express grant of such privilege by law, in favor of Lladoc, the exemption herein must be denied. However, the Court noted the merit of Lladocs claim, and held as liable the Head of Deocese for being the real party in interest instead of Lladoc who was held to be not personally liable; the former manifested that it was submitting himself to the jurisdiction and orders of the Court and he presented Lladocs brief, by reference, as his own and for all purposes.

JJMO