Are you paying too much tax? | PaycheckPlus Tax Tips

Considerations When Managing Your Tax

Revenue is encouraging PAYE taxpayers to use their online facilities over the coming weeks to be sure that all available tax credits are claimed back. Revenue’s online facilities have proven, for many, to be a lot more efficient compared to their offline facilities. Revenue is making it as easy and as straightforward as possible for taxpayers to manage their tax conveniently, however, do you know how best to manage your tax? Do you know if you’re paying too much tax and are you claiming back all of the tax credits that are available to you?

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For many people tax is a confusing and daunting topic. The ever changing tax levels and systems can be difficult to keep up with (view our Budget 2017 highlights here) and many find it difficult to ensure that they claim everything that they are entitled to. To add to this, everyone’s personal circumstances change and this changes their entitlements. So, when using Revenue’s online facilities, be sure to keep in mind the following when managing your taxes:

Update your personal circumstances

Have you stated a new job? Have you emigrated or returned home? Have you separated and started maintenance payments? Have you entered a marriage/civil partnership and have you optimized your tax credits (as unused tax credits can be transferred between spouses)?

Many changes in personal circumstances can affect your tax and, since Budget 2017, this can be different from previous years. For example: a married couple with three children one of whom works part time and one of whom is employed with earnings of 6,500 and 40,000 respectively will see an increase of €303 in annual net income in 2017. For more examples click here.

Medical Expenses and Medical Insurance

You may claim tax relief on a number of qualifying medical expenses such as costs of doctors and consultant fees, items or treatments prescribed by a doctor or consultant and maintenance or treatment in a hospital or a nursing home. For greater details on medical expenses tax relief read our detailed blog about it here.

If you have medical insurance and if you paid a premium to an authorised fund or society for medical insurance on behalf of yourself, your children and dependents, and if assessed under aggregation with your spouse you may be entitled to medical insurance relief.

Maternity Leave

It’s worth noting that if you’ve returned from maternity leave you may have been put on a “week one basis” so you may have overpaid tax and you might be due a refund. For more information on maternity benefit taxation click here.

Third Level Education Tuition fees

If you have paid qualifying fees for Third Level Education tuition to an approved college for an approved course you may claim tax relief. “Qualifying fees” means tuition fees (including the Student Contribution, post 2011), but not examination fees, registration fees or administration fees. For more information read our previous blog here.

Other Tax Relief Opportunities

There are many other considerations to keep in mind when claiming tax back. For example, if you have expenses incurred during employment, if you pay for an approved income protection policy, if you have paid too much USC (Universal Social Charge), if you’re a home carer, etc., all of these opportunities and more should be considered.

Be sure to update Revenue on your circumstances so you don’t overpay on tax and so you can claim your appropriate relief. And please note that a claim for repayment of tax must be made within four years after the end of the tax year to which the claim relates.

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