A. v Board of Inland Revenue

JurisdictionTrinidad & Tobago
JudgeBarnes, J.,Burke, J.,Dean-Maharaj, J.
Judgment Date12 June 1992
CourtTax Appeal Board (Trinidad and Tobago)
Docket NumberNos. I 58 & I 90 of 1988
Date12 June 1992

Tax Appeal Board

Barnes, J.; Burke, J.; Dean-Maharaj, J.

Nos. I 58 & I 90 of 1988

Board of Inland Revenue

Mr. C.W.R. Phelps and Mr. S. Seemungal for appellant.

Miss Allyson West for respondent.

Revenue law - Practice and procedure — Stay of proceedings — Application for stay to facilitate appeal to Court of Appeal — Evidence that hearing of appeal had commenced and there were no exceptional circumstances to justify stay — Application refused.


This is an application by the appellant for a stay of proceedings to facilitate an appeal to the Court of Appeal against a ruling of this Court on a point raised by him in limine in Appeal No. I 58 of 1988. In order to set out clearly the status of the proceedings and the relationship of the Appeals I 58 of 1988 and I 90 of 1988, we think it desirable to go into some detail about the history of these appeals.


On 3. 5.1988 the appellant filed a Notice of Appeal against assessment raised on him by the respondent in respect of the year of income 1980. The first ground of appeal set out in that Notice of Appeal is as follows –

“The assessment for Income year 1980 is statute barred by virtue of the provisions of the Income Tax Act in particular section 89(1) thereof.”


On 20.12.1988, the appellant filed another appeal No. I 190 of 1988, a assessments raised on him by the respondent in respect of the year of income 1981. The appellant contends in both appeals that in respect of each of the years of income under appeal he made a net loss and therefore is not liable to pay income tax for those years.


These appeals are to be heard together by consent of the parties, since there are in both common questions of law and fact to be determined. However the statute barred ground of appeal related only to No. I 58 of 1988. This ground having been argued, this Court ruled on 24. 3.1992, finding against the appellant. It is to appeal this ruling that the appellant now applies for a stay of proceedings. In order to inform itself more fully the court put certain questions to counsel for the appellant and for the respondent.


In response to these questions, we found that both parties were agreed that this Court has an inherent jurisdiction to grant or refuse applications for stay of proceedings and that this jurisdiction is put beyond doubt by section 6(7) of the Tax Appeal Board Act which states

“(7) The Appeal Board as respects the attendance and examination of witnesses, the production and inspection of documents, the enforcement of its orders, the entry on and inspection of property, and other matters necessary or proper for the due exercise of its jurisdiction has all such powers, rights and privileges as are vested in the High Court of Justice on the occasion of an action.”


In support of his application for a stay. Mr. Phelps argued that the statute barred point was a point of law and consequently he was entitled to appeal our ruling and that it was in pursuance, of that entitlement he was seeking to have this Court stay the proceedings currently before it. He contended that the circumstances were exceptional in that should his appeal he successful, the entire appeal No....

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