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ISLAMABAD: In order to reduce litigations of Rs2.3 trillion in courts, the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has started the process of appointment of a panel of advocates of Inland Revenue across the country.

According to the FBR, the FBR has its subordinate offices all over the country and is in the process of evolving a smart legal team for its sub-ordinate offices to plead the departmental cases of Inland Revenue before various courts.

Legal teams shall be hired at the regional level at different stations of Inland Revenue Field Formations, i.e., Islamabad/ Rawalpindi, Lahore, Faisalabad, Multan Sialkot, Bahawalpur, Gujranwala, Sahiwal, Sargodha, Abbottabad, Peshawar, Karachi, Hyderabad, Sukkur, and Quetta.

The description of work revealed that the panel advocates shall provide legal opinion/ endorsement/ recommendations on matters relating to taxation or services or Anti-Money Laundering (AML)/ Criminal Law.

They shall appear before the various courts on the direction of the department and help in the preparation of para-wise comments wherever required for vetting by the department and for submission before the courts.

The panel advocates shall convey the court’s directions to the department in time.

The competent authority has the right to increase/ decrease the number of panel advocates or cancel the hiring process at any time.

Remuneration shall be given on a case-to-case basis as per the FBR’s professional fee structure, the FBR added.

In the case of retired officers of the FBR who have served in the Inland Revenue Service (IRS) or Pakistan Customs Service (PCS) for at least 10 years, a minimum of one-year experience as an Advocate High Court is required.

The FBR has already decided to approach trade bodies, including chambers of commerce all across the country to utilise the Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR) option to the optimum level.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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