Householders around the country are missing out on ‘free money’ in the form of tax refunds and tax credits because they either aren’t aware that they can make a claim or they simply aren’t bothered dealing with Revenue. Less then 1 in 20 taxpayers claimed money back on medical expenses last year.
Income taxpayers are entitled to get 20 per cent back from health expenses. That means that for every Ђ500 spent, taxpayers are entitled to a refund of Ђ100. This only applies to expenses that haven’t been reimbursed by a private health insurer but they include doctor visits, drugs, medicines, hearing aids, home nursing and maternity care among others.
Even smaller numbers are claiming tax credits. Tax credits have the effect of reducing your payable tax by the amount of the credit and whereas over 100,000 were claimed last year, more were expected.
The Consumer’s Association of Ireland have voiced their opinion stating that the Government and Revenue are not doing enough to keep people aware of their entitlements with regards to tax credits and tax refunds. Revenue have been accused of not being as proactive as they once were in promoting the claiming of allowances and relief.
The percentage drop in what can be claimed in tax refunds (which fell from 41 per cent to 20 per cent) combined with the tedious and daunting process of making claims to Revenue are perhaps a couple of factors that have been putting people off.
Refunds can be claimed online, by mobile phone and through the old-fashioned method of submitting forms. If the thought of having to gather and fill out forms is completely off-putting or you just don’t have the time, it may be worth researching a few websites such as Taxback.com who are specialist in tax return services and take much of the hassle out of making claims.
Courtesy of Irish Independent 25th June 2013