The Powers of SAT in Guatemala

January 26, 2021

The SAT (Superintendencia de Administración Tributaria – Superintendency of Tax Administration) was created in 1997 as a decentralized and autonomous public sector entity with jurisdiction throughout Guatemala, which seeks the facilitation of taxpayers’ compliance with their tax obligations through a set of actions.

Thus, it has attributions and powers conferred by law to fulfill its duties. This article describes the main powers of the Tax Administration.

Attributions and Powers of SAT

According to Article 98 of the Tax Code of Guatemala, approved by Decree No. 6-91 as amended, the powers of the Tax Administration to verify the correct compliance with tax regulations are as follows:

  • Request information from individuals or legal entities, and in case of being responsible, may request the elements that constitute the taxable base for a correct determination.
  • Require the payment of taxes, interest, and fines.
  • Verify compliance with formal obligations, such as tax returns.
  • To sanction taxpayers or responsible parties, according to the Tax Code and their infractions.
  • To organize the collection system.
  • To carry out the appraisals of goods and rights if the taxpayer has not previously provided information on their value.
  • To request collaboration from other government agencies.
  • Verify inventories of goods and merchandise.

Other Attributions and Powers of SAT

According to Article 98 A of the Tax Code, the Administration may also have the following powers or attributions:

  • To establish an electronic address or mailbox by mutual agreement with the taxpayer.
  • To establish some procedures to keep books, invoices, among others.
  • To exchange tax information when there is an agreement with other Tax Administrations, as long as it is only for purposes related to auditing and tax control.
  • Enter into mutual cooperation agreements with other Tax Administrations.
  • Update the taxpayer’s RTU (Registro Tributario Único – Single Tax Registry), ex officio.