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VAT Registration in Ireland

Updated on Wednesday 26th August 2020

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There are several taxes companies and natural persons need to pay in Ireland. These are divided into two categories: direct and indirect taxes. If the income tax is the most important direct levy, the value added tax (VAT) is the most important indirect one thanks to its significant contribution to the Irish economy.
 
The VAT is levied by Irish companies or other entities making VAT-taxable supplies of goods or services. For this purpose, economic operators are required to complete VAT registration in Ireland. You can rely on our Irish company formation agents if you want to start a business and register it for taxation, including VAT.
 

Types of VAT registration procedures in Ireland

It should be noted that VAT registration in Ireland can be completed on a voluntary or mandatory basis. Voluntary registration implies the process to be completed upon starting a business in Ireland without reaching the thresholds for which obtaining the VAT number becomes mandatory.
 
Voluntary registration for the Irish value added tax can be completed with the help of our local agents alongside the business incorporation procedure thus saving time along the way.
 
VAT registration is not available for companies only, as natural persons and sole traders must also obtain VAT numbers if they engage in economic activities liable for this tax.
 
According to recent regulations imposed at EU level, persons buying goods from EU member states and/or receiving services from abroad must also register for VAT in Ireland. New regulations apply to e-commerce businesses selling goods within the EU.
 
Our company registration agents in Ireland can offer detailed information on the new rules imposed on online businesses with respect to VAT registration.

The Irish value added tax

The value added tax (VAT) is applied to products and services that are sold in Ireland. The Irish VAT is charged to local business for the products and the services they provide to the Irish consumer market. The VAT in Ireland is also charged to the goods that are imported into this country. This means that the respective entities will be obliged to complete the formalities for VAT registration in Ireland
 
However, in order to be charged with the value added tax, the products or services must be imported from outside the European Union (EU), but the tax can also be imposed to businesses from EU states, depending on the nature of the goods. It is also necessary to know that specific products can be exempted from the payment of the VAT, in certain conditions. Our team of specialists in company formation in Ireland can offer advice on the Irish VAT registration procedures
 

What are the rates of the VAT in Ireland?

Just like in the case of other European countries, the Irish VAT is charged at different rates (there is a standard VAT rate and reduced VAT rates). Our specialists in company formation in Ireland can provide information on the types of services and products that are charged with lower VAT rates. Currently, the Irish VAT rates are the following: 
 
  • • the standard rate of 23%  is charged for most of the goods and services sold on the Irish market;
  • • a lower VAT rate, of 13,5%, is charged for fuel, electricity, cleaning services and entertainment;
  • • a lower VAT rate, of 9%, is imposed for touristic activities, hairdressing and newspapers;
  • • a reduced VAT rate, of 4,8%, is applicable to agricultural services and products;
  •  a 0% VAT rate is available for non-alcoholic beverages, fruit and vegetable, health and education products destined to exports.
 
A reduced tax rate of 13,5% also applies to citizens purchasing real estate property directly from a developer or a builder. There is an exemption on the payment of the Irish VAT on the sale and purchase of old properties. Renting a property is also subject to exemption from the value added tax in Ireland
 

VAT registration in Ireland

VAT registration in this country is not compulsory unless a certain threshold has been reached. In case of Irish companies exporting or importing products within the EU, registration is required provided that the registration threshold is exceeded or there are strong reasons to believe it will be exceeded within 12 months.
 
The general turnover threshold for supplying goods or products is established at EUR 75,000 for Irish companies, while for individuals manufacturing their products from zero-rated materials the registration threshold is EUR 37,500. Foreign companies supplying goods or services in Ireland are required to register for VAT without any exceptions.

 

What are the formalities for Irish VAT registration?

 
The VAT registration in Ireland is supervised by the Irish Revenue. Companies and natural persons required to register for VAT in this country can conclude the process through the Revenue’s Online Services (ROS) portal. In order to register, the interested parties must complete specific forms, which depend based on the legal nature of the party. Thus, in the case of natural persons, sole traders or for businesses operating as trusts and partnerships, the VAT registration in Ireland is completed through the TR1 registration form, while in the case of corporate entities, the TR2 registration form is required. 
 
The above mentioned requirements are necessary in the case of companies that are registered in Ireland or for Irish citizens. However, foreign businesses must also register for VAT in Ireland, even though the respective companies are not registered in this state. In this particular case, other documents have to be submitted, as follows: the TR1(FT) registration form, available for natural persons and businesses that are not corporate entities, and the TR2(FT) registration form, for corporate bodies. 
 
 
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When is the Irish VAT registration compulsory? 

 
Businesses and natural persons alike have to be registered for VAT in Ireland once their annual turnover (calculated based on the calendar year) exceeds a specific threshold. The thresholds established by the Irish Revenue depend based on the nature of the goods or products and those opening a company in Ireland should take into consideration the fact that the basic thresholds available in this country are the following: 
 
  • the VAT registration in Ireland is compulsory for the supply of services once the annual turnover reaches EUR 37,500;
  • the income obtained from distance sales and mail-orders will be charged once the entity reaches the threshold of EUR 35,000;
  • in the case of those making acquisitions from other EU countries, the Irish VAT registration should be done when they reach the threshold of EUR 41,000;
  • the supply of goods in Ireland is also charged with the Irish VAT, once the sales have reached EUR 75,000;
  • the same threshold, of EUR 75,000, is applicable for entities supplying both services and products on the Irish market, if more than 90% of the turnover is obtained from the sale of goods. 

Registering for VAT for the purpose of acquiring goods and services from abroad

There are cases where businesses or persons need to register for VAT only for the purpose of purchasing goods and services from abroad. Among these, are:
 
  • - companies that are not registered for VAT;
  • - persons who are not registered for VAT;
  • - companies exempt from VAT registration, such as banks and other financial institutions;
  • - public bodies;
  • - farmers and other agricultural-related operators.
 
In the case of natural persons, Irish residents or not, a VAT account becomes mandatory when they purchase goods or services from other EU states with an annual value of 41,000 euros. This requirement also applies to farmers and fishers which fall under the category of receiving goods and services from abroad, however, they can remain unregistered for VAT for their main activities.
 
Our company registration representatives in Ireland can offer more information on this aspect.

Non-residents selling goods and services in Ireland

Companies and natural persons who does not have a management or fixed place of business in Ireland are deemed as non-residents and are subject to specific VAT registration requirements here. In most cases, these must register with the relevant authorities in their home countries, however, specific exceptions apply.
 
These are required to register a VAT account in Ireland if:
 
  • - they import goods in Ireland;
  • - they supply services in Ireland;
  • - they engage in distance selling from Ireland;
  • - they engage in the transport of goods from Ireland;
  • - they engage in certain real estate transactions regarding properties located in Ireland;
  • - they provide various IT services from Ireland.
 
The procedure for registration for VAT in Ireland will imply the same steps as for local businesses.
 
If you want to open a company in Ireland and need guidance, you can rely on us.

VAT accounting requirements in Ireland

Just like any other tax-related matter, the VAT must also be recorded in a company’s accounting and financial situation.
 
VAT payments are made online based on the invoices and supporting documents indicating the collection of this tax. Moreover, VAT filings must be made. The VAT must be paid by the 19th if the following month for each tax period. In order to pay the VAT, a company or person must file form VAT3.
 
The VAT must be paid upon the issuance of an invoice, however, which an invoice is not issued, the VAT must be paid on the date of the supply or in advance.
 
You can also obtain various accounting services provided by our Irish specialists.

 

Is there a VAT exemption on imports for companies in Ireland? 

 
Yes, companies in Ireland can benefit from tax exemptions on the charge of the VAT in specific conditions, which are regulated by the VAT Act 1972. The Section 13 of the Act specifies that businesses can be taxed at a 0% tax rate on the VAT for their imports, purchases and supplies, as long as their international sales represent at least 75% of their total Irish turnover; our team of consultants in Irish company formation can provide more information on this regulation. 
 
In order to benefit from the advantages of this regulation, additional procedures for VAT registration in Ireland have to be concluded. Here, businesses have to obtain an authorization, which is issued based on the company’s total trade within the last six months (however, the Irish Revenue can request information on the company’s total trade level for the last financial year). 
 
If the company will meet the Revenue’s requirements, it will obtain the Certificate 13B, which will then allow it to benefit from VAT tax exemptions. Non-resident companies are also entitled to benefit from the provisions of the Section 13 of the VAT Act
 
Please note that foreign companies that have concluded the Irish VAT registration are legally required to comply with the VAT rules available in this country, which means that they will need to complete specific documents following the Irish tax rules, such as completing invoices and electronic invoices, credit notes, and other required documents. 
 

Why register for VAT in Ireland?

When not mandatory, VAT registration can also bring various benefits to taxpayers. This happens because, VAT refunds are available in Ireland based on the tax returns filed with the local tax authorities. This means that a company or person can claim back the amount of money paid as VAT partially or entirely.
 
One of the greatest advantages of VAT registration in Ireland is that one may claim a refund. If you require help for Irish VAT registration you may rely on our team of specialists in company formation in Ireland. You may also contact us for personalized accounting services and other information regarding the VAT procedures available for the import of goods into this country. 

 

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