HomeSocietyThe guardianship/lawyer tussle sees the end of the tunnel

The guardianship/lawyer tussle sees the end of the tunnel

The government and the lawyers have, it seems, found common ground in the crisis which, according to some, responds to the sweet name of “fiscal crisis”. The two parties have agreed on a compromise formula which would put an end to the dispute between the black togas and their guardianship, the Ministry of Justice.

According to MoroccoLatestNews sources, the two parties ended their standoff by reaching an agreement, during a meeting which was held in the presence of representatives of the lawyers, of Fouzi Lekjaa, Minister Delegate to the Minister of Economy and Finance in charge of the budget, and Abdellatif Ouahbi, Minister of Justice. An agenda included the main subject of the disagreement, namely the VAT tax regime applicable to certain regulated liberal professions including those of Justice and particularly that of lawyer, included in the 2023 finance bill (PLF 2023).

The meeting ended with a compromise formula. Lawyers have the possibility of paying an amount of 300 dirhams for each final and complete case in the different stages of the litigation in each level of jurisdiction, in first instance, on appeal, as well as in cassation or during their declaration at the end of every six months by signifying the number of cases.

It was also decided, according to our sources, to exempt files submitted under Chapter 148 of the Code of Civil Procedure, as well as matters related to the judiciary of proximity with the payment of taxes. As for the cases of industrial accidents and disputes, the tax will be paid after the execution of the judgment. As part of the support and encouragement for new lawyers, the government has decided, on the basis of the aforementioned agreement, to exempt them from taxation for their first three years of their careers.

However, this Friday, the lawyers are preparing to hold an extended meeting at the Bouskoura Lawyers Club, where it was planned to discuss this file, which angered the black robes. In an interview with MoroccoLatestNews on Thursday, one of the presidents of bar associations confirmed that the meeting, which will be attended by 250 members of all bars in Morocco, will result in escalation steps and the continuation of movements , in case no agreement is reached that can satisfy the different parties.

On Tuesday, the black robes observed a strike in several cities such as Casablanca, Rabat, Fez, Tangier, El Jadida or even Oujda, Tetouan… Several demonstrations were organized in various courts of the kingdom, to denounce the upward revision of the rates of their taxation. Courts of Appeal in various parts of the Kingdom have turned into arenas for chanting against the government, in a sign of lawyers’ rejection of the contents of the Finance Bill 2023. Courts halted after sessions boycotted by the lawyers, confirming their protest and their rejection of the tax measure provided for in the finance bill for the financial year. According to the same sources, all cases and files, scheduled by some courts, have been postponed to a later date.

Mustapha Baitas, government spokesman, assured during the press briefing held on Thursday, November 3, that the lawyers’ anger was not aimed at the tax itself, but at the terms of its collection. But if calm seems to have returned to the level of the black dresses, this is not the case of the white coats of the private sector, protesting against the new tax measures which appear in the 2023 finance bill.



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