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Subject: Re: [tax] Comments on XML Position Paper


I think the issue is more one of content first and implementation second, at least in my mind.  Agreed that a key source of information will be the accounting system, but not always.  XBRL GL is a good implementation of a transport mechanism for the reporting supply chain. One might even argue that the enhancement of XBRL GL with Tax XML standard tags may serve to meet many tax audit/compliance needs for fully.  But I would argue also that this is not always the case.  Data sourced in sub-ledgers and support systems may be equally important from a compliance perspective. There are some jurisdictions that define a tax liability at a point other than when an transaction is posted to the GL.  XBRL GL may not support such sources completely.  A well formed ontology framework can be used to ensure that XBRL GL or STF or SAF could all meet compliance needs because the information is mappable to the framework definitions and terms both globally and potentially locally.   There also may be equally persuasive arguments to have a recommended Tax XML  reporting format that is a superset of all requirements, and that also provides recommendations on when to use other XML standards such as XBRL GL, CIQ, Tax Core Component tags for transaction tax details, etc.

I think XBRL as a deployment for reporting does have its benefits, but we will inevitably require support for multiple expressions of the Tax Ontology. 

Just my thoughts,

George Farkas wrote:
I agree that one ought to be careful, but the discussion ignores XBRL GL. 

XBRL GL (and Eric Cohen is the expert here) enables the tax world to get  the information it needs at a far more granular level than XBRL financial reporting. If we ignore XBRL GL, we are ignoring some of the best standardized ways of obtaining the tax information that is required. IMHO, if my limited knowledge of XBRL GL is correct,  XBRL GL can provide the reports of the transactions as is needed.

Disclosure: As Chair of XBRL Canada, I may be biased in that direction.

George Farkas
President, XBI Software Inc
Chair, XBRL Canada

At 02:01 AM 3/12/2004, Lutes Terence H wrote:

I very much agree with Phil and Andy's point.

-----Original Message-----
From: Philip Allen [mailto:plega-oasis@decisionsoft.com]
Sent: Thursday, March 11, 2004 4:15 AM
To: tax@lists.oasis-open.org
Subject: Re: [tax] Comments on XML Position Paper

On Tuesday 09 March 2004 11:47, Andy Greener wrote:

> I'm also a little nervous about recommending XBRL wholesale as the
> standard for tax reporting. It is certainly appropriate in the
> corporate financial reporting world, and by extension therefore the
> corporate tax reporting world, but I can think of a number of tax
> reporting scenarios here in the UK for instance for which it would be
> less than ideal (personal tax compliance information, payroll
> deduction and compliance information for income tax and National
> Insurance, duty on property and financial transactions, etc).

I would like to support Andy's point here.  XBRL is very well suited for corporate financial data and related tax and regulatory reporting - but much other tax data is transactional in nature and so there is a strong case for couching it in conventional XML.  The widespread acceptance of XBRL is a huge step forward for the financial services industry but we must be careful not to oversell it.

Philip Allen, Chairman      DecisionSoft Limited
+44-1865-203192             http://www.decisionsoft.com

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