Taxpayers miss out on €550 in refunds
TAXPAYERS are missing out on up to €550 each by failing to claim tax refunds for the likes of medical expenses, service charges and trade union subscriptions, according to tax advisers taxback.com.
The tax experts said millions of euro was going unclaimed by ordinary PAYE (pay as you earn) workers because they were either unaware of their entitlements or because of apathy.
Aoife Twohig of taxback.com said the average tax refund amounted to about €550. She urged taxpayers to ensure they claimed all the reliefs they were entitled to, such as medical expenses, rent relief, tuition fees and home carer's credit.
Many of these reliefs can still be claimed up to four years after the tax year in which they were paid.
"We are advising that people look back over the past four years and assess and claim any tax rebates they are due. It's probably worth quite a few euro," Ms Twohig said.
Tax relief on qualifying medical expenses was slashed from 41pc to 20pc at the start of 2009, but this has not deterred people from applying for refunds. If a person has incurred expenses such as doctors' bills, prescription medicines or even laser eye surgery, they can claim tax relief on all of these.
Tax relief at the standard rate (20pc) may be available in respect of tuition fees paid for approved undergraduate and postgraduate courses in colleges. The maximum limit for qualifying fees is €5,000.
Married couples who are jointly assessed and where one spouse works in the home caring for their children may be entitled to an extra tax credit of up to €900 in certain instances.
This credit has been slashed to €810 starting in January 2011.