員工分紅費用化之研究─以所得稅問題為中心

李瑞生;黃明聖;黃淑惠

中文摘要

台灣的高科技產業—尤其是電子業—數十年來將員工分紅列於盈餘分配項下支出,而非列於人事費用項下。此舉有助於公司降低人事費用,進而提升帳面盈餘數字,具有美化財務報表之功能。但境外投資人每每質疑,員工分紅列於盈餘分配將損及投資人權益,且不符合國際公認會計準則。立法院乃於民國95 年8 月通過修正商業會計法第64 條,行政院金融監督暨管理委員會96 年3 月亦隨之公布處理員工分紅費用化之相關會計準則,從此員工分紅改列於費用而不再列於盈餘分配項下。 本文將討論有關員工分紅費用化與所得稅相關的案例與行政函釋,例如依據所得基本稅額條例第12 條規定,員工分紅配股之所得,應於可處分日次日之年度,計入基本所得額。高等行政法院即曾據此解決實務案例紛爭。本文又發現一有趣之議題:如公司已經確定有員工分紅配股計劃,但尚未發行並配發給員工之前,員工已經死亡。該股票事後發給時,究竟應歸入員工生前所得列入遺產範圍抑或繼承已開始而列入繼承人之所得範圍?就此類似問題美國法院有相當多之案例加以討論,可惜國內並無這種案例;僅有一關於生前存款之利息於死後給付應如何歸屬之案例。本文也介紹一些關於員工分紅因消滅時效完成或因拋棄,而導致並未實際發給時,應如何處理之相關規範。 經由案例研究及行政規則介紹,本文認為我國員工分紅費用化乃正確方向,惟仍有少數問題必須解決。本文建議:參考美國第五巡迴法院之「實質確定收入原則」,衡量員工死亡時該分紅計畫是否已經進展到「確定會發給」之程度,如是;則該分紅明確屬於員工實質可收入之所得,應歸入其遺產範圍,如否;則列入繼承人所得範圍。但此一問題仍相當複雜,必須更近一步的研究才能發展出適合我國國情且合理的理論以供實務運用。

 

On Expensing Employee Bonus─Especially Focus on Income Tax Cases

Jui-Sheng Lee;Ming-Sheng Huang;Shu-Hui Huang

abstract

The high-tech Industries in Taiwan—especially the Electronic Industries—treated the employee bonus as surplus earning distribution for more then thirty years. This may help firms reduce personnel expense and to raise surplus. But, some foreign investor argued against that the employee bonus causing of the loss of the stockholders' equity, doesn't match with International Financial Reporting Standards(IFRS). The Legislative Yuan passed the amendment of Business Accounting Act on April 28, 2006, and FSC announced the related accounting rules for expensing employee bonus on August 28, 2008. With such revision, the employee bonus will be recognized as expense rather than earning distribution. This paper discusses some practice regulations and cases related to expensing employee bonus and income tax. According to article 12 of Income Basic Tax Act, employee bonus shall be added to the amount of basic income on the year of the date next following the date of acquisition. We also noted an interesting issue both important in Taiwan and USA, if a company has an employee bonus plan, the employee dead before the shares were designated, whether the bonus constituted income in respect of a decedent or income of the inheritor? It’s difficult to identify. The US Courts have a lots of cases concern about this but we can’t find any case in Taiwan. This thesis then introduces the practice regulation about extinctive prescription and waive of the bonus. After all discusses above these cases and regulations, this paper conclude that expensing employee bonus is on the right way but still has a few problems to be resolve. We suggest selecting and adopting the “Substantial Certainty of Receipt Test” —decided by Fifth Circuit Court of US.—to clear up the question of “employee bonus plan before death and designated after death”. But we must admit that this issue is very complex and need more study to develop a rational theory for our country.