Workers of Ireland, claim your refunds

by Gazette Reporter

Experts at Taxback.com are urging PAYE workers to submit their tax refund applications since most people would’ve received their P60s by now. The tax professionals say that their current average tax refund is €880 for a PAYE worker but that as the Government has gnawed away at various tax reliefs over the last few years they expect that average to drop as the years go on.

According to Christine Keily of www.taxback.com: “With the austerity budgets over the last few years, it’s obvious that people are paying more tax than they were five years ago. This should really bring it home to people that they absolutely should claim back their entitlements.”

Taxback.com say that although there have been a variety of cuts to tax reliefs in recent years many people are unaware of the fact that you can still reclaim tax as far back as 2010 when the tax reliefs were perhaps more generous.

Keily continued: “There is still a long list of tax reliefs available to people that could result in savings of hundreds of euro, but many of these go unclaimed every year either due to a lack of awareness or apathy.

“A lot of people still find applying for a tax refund confusing or complicated, resulting in them paying more tax than is necessary and losing out on entitlements. Revenue has made attempts to educate taxpayers as to their entitlements regarding tax credits and reliefs. However, despite this, we believe there are still millions of euro going unclaimed each year.”

Now, more than ever, people need this money. The following are some of the tax credits still available:

Medical / dental expenses:

While the rate at which tax relief can be claimed on medical expenses has been slashed from 41% to 20%, back in 2008 the relief is still available and can be claimed on most medical expenses incurred and on qualifying non-routine dental expenses.

Tuition fees:

The tax credit for tuition fees is still available. For the years 2009 to 2010 the max tax credit available was €1,000. A change was introduced in the 2011 tax year where the relief does not apply to the first €2,000 of qualifying fee or if less, the full amount. Similarly, for part time courses the first €1,000 was disregarded in respect of each claim. These amounts were increased to €2,250 and €1,250 respectively for 2012-13 academic year. The maximum limit on qualifying fees remains capped at €7,000 so the maximum credit available has been effectively reduced from €1,000 to €950.

Rent:

The rent credit has been reduced to €200 for a single person in the year 2013 and the tax credit is set to be phased out by the end of 2017. Taxpayers still have an opportunity to claim the rent credit back to 2010 (for 2011 and subsequent years the relief will only apply if you were in rented accommodation on 07/12/2010) and should take advantage of this.

Keily went on to say: “Obviously, not everyone is entitled to the same tax credits and reliefs so it is up to the individual themselves to ensure they know their entitlements. For example people should ensure that they have claimed the home carer credit if they are entitled to it.

“Overpaying tax is also an area which results in many people receiving much welcomed refunds from the Revenue. Individuals should look back on their income levy and USC payments to ensure that they have not overpaid such payments in prior years and should claim a refund before it’s too late.

“Most employers should’ve issued P60s by now. If people aren’t sure how to review them, we can help them.”

Other tax reliefs and incentives which have remained available are:

• Rent a room relief

• Exemption on income earned from caring for children in your own home

• Employment and investment incentive (EII) scheme

• Film relief is still available

• Capital losses are still allowable

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