The National Pensions Framework was published by the Department of Social and Family Affairs last week. Key recommendations made include:
- An effective tax relief on personal pension contributions at 33%
- A mandatory approach to pension scheme membership
- A cap of €200,000 on the tax free lump sum
- Increasing the state pension age
The top rate of VAT has fallen from 21.5% to 21% from 1 January 2010. While this decrease will not reverse the Northern shopping trend it will bring the VAT rate somewhat in line with that of the UK, which will increase from 15% to 17.5%. Revenue has published a guide to the rate change on www.revenue.ie.
Where a business is awaiting a redundancy rebate and has difficulty in meeting their tax liabilities, Revenue previously announced that the business can offset the redundancy rebate directly against the outstanding taxes, thereby mitigating against any interest and penalties that may be accruing on the unpaid liabilities.
Revenue has broadened the criteria for businesses to qualify for the reduced filing frequency of VAT and PAYE/PRSI returns from 1 January 2010 in a bid to reduce administration costs for small businesses.
The following is a summary of upcoming pay and file dates: