January 20, 2016
Two Revenue eBriefs in the past 24 hours outline new income tax exemptions on travel expense payments to teachers who do State exam work, and non-executive directors who attend corporate board meetings.
Yet no such concessions are available to self-employed small business owners and entrepreneurs.
Instead, their travel expense claims are subject to a battery of arbitrary and complex restrictions – with no leeway and serious penalties for disallowed motor and subsistence costs.
In Ireland, it always pays to pursue a career in the public or corporate sectors.
Because, if you’re brave & independent enough to stand on your own two feet and run your own small business, you’ll be nailed to the wall at every turn.
January 8, 2016
The Irish Tax Institute (ITI) has today released Reshaping Ireland’s Personal Tax System, a fascinating analysis of Ireland’s personal tax system.
It’s a bold document, slaying many common tax myths.
Among its key findings are:
- Ireland has the second most progressive personal tax system in the OECD, with only Israel ranking higher.
- Irish taxpayers earning above the average industrial wage pay more personal tax than their counterparts in other countries
- Irish low-income taxpayers pay less personal tax than their counterparts elsewhere.
- 29% of income earners pay no personal tax whatsoever.
- The top 1% of income earners pay 22% of all income tax and USC. The bottom 75% pay just 19%.
- Our tax system continues to discriminate against the self-employed.
The Institute warns that the heavy tax burden on higher earners is likely to damage Ireland’s international competitiveness, both in attracting business investment and skilled workers to locate here.
It’s good to see these important issues being highlighted. Hats off to the ITI.
January 4, 2016
If your business employs staff, don’t forget that the National Minimum Wage increased on 1 January 2016.
The standard minimum wage for an experienced adult employee is now €9.15 per hour.
Lower minimum wage rates apply to employees under 18 years old and to those who have recently turned 18.
The minimum wage for a worker:
- under 18 is €6.41 per hour (70% of the adult minimum wage).
- in their first year of employment since their 18th birthday is €7.32 per hour (80% of the adult minimum wage).
- in their second year of employment since their 18th birthday is €8.24 per hour (90% of the adult minimum wage).
Apprentices & Trainees
The new minimum wage rates for an apprentice or other trainee are as follows:
- First one-third of training course €6.86 per hour (75% of national minimum wage rate)
- Second one-third of training course €7.32 per hour (80% of national minimum wage rate)
- Final one third of the training course €8.24 per hour (90% of national minimum wage rate).
If you employ staff, it is your responsibility to ensure you are complying with the updated minimum wage law, by paying all staff members at least the applicable minimum wage.
The WorkplaceRelations.ie website answers many of the key Frequently Asked Questions on how the minimum wage works.
If you have any doubts on any aspect of how the minimum wage works in practice, I recommend you obtain professional advice.