Brexit centre

The decision of the UK people to leave the European Union is one of the most significant events to occur in the history of the EU. Because of our geographic, social and economic ties with the UK, Ireland will experience the greatest impact of this decision among EU countries. The land border makes the situation particularly onerous. Ireland currently operates a trade surplus with the UK and customs checks and controls are increasingly likely.

Chartered Accountants Ireland

Latest Brexit news

Brexit

The Institute has created a hub for members to read all published guidance from the UK, Irish and EU authorities to help prepare for the possibility of a no-deal Brexit. If you’re confused about the votes that will take place in the UK Parliament mid-March, take a look at our Brexit decision tree explaining the process.  No deal guidance The Institute has created a dedicated hub on its Brexit webpage which collates guidance and information leaflets produced by the UK and Irish governments and the EU to help businesses and people prepare in the event of a no-deal Brexit.  The page will be updated as information is released by the authorities.   You can also read the practical customs guide prepared by the Institute and ICAEW using this link.   Read all our Brexit updates on our Brexit web centre. Mid-March voting UK Prime Minister Theresa May has said that she will put her withdrawal bill, including any changes agreed with the EU, to a meaningful vote in the UK Parliament by 12 March at the latest.  If the bill is not passed, MPs will then be offered two further votes. The first vote will be on 13 March on whether MPs support a no-deal Brexit. MPs will be asked whether they support “leaving the EU without a Withdrawal Agreement and a framework for a future relationship on 29 March”. If that vote fails and MPs don’t wish to leave the EU without a deal, MPs will have a vote on 14 March on whether to extend the two year Article 50 negotiations which would delay the UK leaving the EU beyond 29 March. The UK Prime Minster said that any “short limited extension” should not go beyond the end of June 2019.  European Parliament elections are due to take place from 23 May. The UK Prime Minister in her statement to Parliament on Tuesday said “Let me be clear, I do not want to see Article 50 extended. Our absolute focus should be on working to get a deal and leaving on 29 March. An extension beyond the end of June would mean the UK taking part in the European Parliament elections. What kind of message would that send to the more than 17 million people who voted to leave the EU nearly three years ago now?”

Feb 28, 2019
Tax

The Institute has created a dedicated hub for members to read published guidance from the UK, Irish and EU authorities to help prepare for the possibility of a no-deal Brexit. The Institute has created a hub on its Brexit webpage which collates guidance and information leaflets produced by the UK and Irish governments and the EU to help businesses and people prepare in the event of a no-deal Brexit.  The page will be updated as information is released by the authorities. You can also read the practical customs guide prepared by the Institute and ICAEW using this link.  

Feb 25, 2019
Tax

With just 32 days to go until Brexit day and the UK Prime Minister delaying the key vote on the withdrawal agreement until 12 March things are going down to the wire.  As noted above the Irish Government published its no deal Brexit legislation last week to help protect Ireland’s economy and citizens. Brexit Omnibus Bill published by Irish Government The Irish Government last week published its Brexit Omnibus Bill, a 15 part series of legislation designed to protect the Irish economy and its citizens in the event of a no-deal Brexit. The Bill prioritises issues that need to be addressed urgently and immediately through primary legislation at national level. Each Part will be commenced by the individual Minister at the appropriate time. Legislative provisions have been put in place to deal with the following areas: Health services:  to enable essential Common Travel Area healthcare arrangements, including reimbursement arrangements, to continue between Ireland and the UK. Industrial development: to help vulnerable enterprises deal with the effects of Brexit by giving Enterprise Ireland extra powers to offer enhanced businesses through investment, loans and Research Development and Innovation grants. Electricity: The Commission for the Regulation of Utilities will be allowed to amend the licences of electricity market participants for one year without recourse to the normal modification and appeal processes, to facilitate the continuing operation of the Single Electricity Market. Student education: Some Irish students studying in the UK and UK nationals studying in the Republic of Ireland currently qualify for SUSI grants. This legislative provision makes sure that, even after Brexit, these arrangements can continue to apply to eligible students. Tax: The provisions cover corporation tax, income tax, VAT (including the postponement of VAT on imports from the UK), capital gains tax, capital acquisitions tax and stamp duty. The provisions extend existing legislative definitions to include the UK, in the event that they are no longer a member of the EU/EEA, in order to allow the continuation of existing arrangements in the immediate future. Read more about these provisions in the Irish tax section. Financial services: legislative amendments to support the decision of the European Commission to grant temporary equivalency in European legislation to the Central Securities Depositories and Central Counterparties based in the UK. The provisions also extend the protections contained in the Settlement Finality Directive to Irish participants in relevant third country domiciled settlement systems. Financial services – Insurance and Reinsurance: to enable UK insurance undertakings and intermediaries to continue to fulfil their contractual obligations to Irish customers for 3 years from Brexit day. Social welfare: the continuation of current benefits allowed under the Common Travel Area arrangements Bus services: a regulatory regime in relation to bus and coach passenger services between Ireland and the UK. Protection of employees: in the event of an employer becoming insolvent under UK law, their employees who work and pay PRSI in Ireland, will continue to be covered by the protections set out in the Protection of Employees (Employers’ Insolvency)  Act. Extradition: In the event of a no-deal Brexit the European Arrest Warrant system will cease to apply to the UK.  Immigration: Immigration officers, when considering removing or deporting a person from the State, have the power to undertake refoulement consideration (i.e forcible return to the person’s original country). Harbours Act: Seafarers who have a pilot exemption certificate can apply for new certificates in the period leading up to 29 March 2019 even if their existing certificate has not expired. Read the Bill and the explanatory memorandum. Timeline for the passing of the Bill: Week of 25 Feb – Brexit Bill in 2nd Stage in Dail; Week of 4 March – Brexit Bill in Committee, Report and Final Stage in the Dail; and Week of 11 March – Brexit Bill in Seanad  

Feb 25, 2019
Brexit

Despite campaigns by HMRC and Revenue, there has been a low uptake in the number of traders applying for a business registration to allow Irish and UK businesses to trade with each other after Brexit.  We encourage traders to register as soon as possible.   It seems from Revenue figures that there has been a low uptake in the number of traders registering for an Economic Operators’ Registration and Identification (EORI) number.  We understand from our discussions with HMRC officers that the uptake in the UK has also been low.  At a minimum, UK and Irish traders need to apply for this business registration if they want to continue trading with each other.  This number will enable traders to make relevant customs declarations among other things and is a requirement for trading with countries outside of the EU.  For UK traders, the UK government has advised that an EORI number will be required to continue to trade with the EU in the event of no-deal. We are told that applying for an EORI number is very simple, can be done online at Revenue.ie or on Gov.uk and only takes a few days. We encourage traders to register as soon as possible.    

Feb 25, 2019
Brexit

Last week, we looked at the simplified customs procedures the HMRC propose to introduce in the event of a no-deal Brexit.  This week we look at the changes that are proposed for claiming back EU VAT suffered by UK businesses in the event of a no-deal Brexit. If the UK leaves the EU without an agreement, then UK businesses will continue to be able to claim refunds of VAT from EU member states but in future they will need to use the existing processes for non-EU businesses.  This will mean a change in practice for businesses. As the UK will no longer be an EU Member State, UK business will no longer have access to the EU VAT refund system. According to recently released HMRC guidance, and in letters sent to impacted businesses, after 29 March 2019, UK businesses that suffer VAT in an EU country must claim VAT refunds from that EU member state by using the relevant member state’s existing process for businesses based outside the EU.  This includes outstanding claims that relate to 2018 expenses, and claims relating to 2019.  Read further guidance from HMRC. This process varies across the EU and UK businesses will need to make themselves aware of the processes in the individual countries where they incur costs and want to claim a refund. The general practice is that a claim is made directly to the EU country where the VAT arose.   VAT incurred in Ireland For example in Ireland, foreign traders established outside the EU (which will include UK businesses after Brexit) paying Irish VAT can claim back VAT from the Revenue Commissioners.  Revenue’s guidance on this process can be found here and there are strict conditions that need to be adhered to in order to reclaim VAT and not all VAT on expenditure can be reclaimed. The EU has also provided information on claiming back VAT incurred in Ireland and details can be found on the European Commission’s website. Readers can also find further general information about claiming VAT refunds from other EU member states on the EU Commission’s website. The above guidance is relevant in the event of a no-deal Brexit. We will keep members updated on developments in this area. Read all our Brexit updates on our Brexit web centre.  

Feb 21, 2019
Brexit

The Institute has created a hub for members to read all published guidance from the UK, Irish and EU authorities to help prepare for the possibility of a no-deal Brexit. In other news, with just over a month to go until Brexit day, UK Prime Minister Theresa May is in Brussels this week attempting to get a solution to make the Irish backstop more palatable to her MPs. No deal guidance The Institute has created a dedicated hub on its Brexit webpage which collates guidance and information leaflets produced by the UK and Irish governments and the EU to help businesses and people prepare in the event of a no-deal Brexit.  The page will be updated as information is released by the authorities.   You can also read the practical customs guide prepared by the Institute and ICAEW using this link.   Irish no deal legislation to be passed by 15 March The Irish Government has said it plans to have its Brexit Omnibus Bill pass all stages in the Oireachtas by Friday 15 March.  If required, the President will sign the Bill into law on Friday 29 March – Brexit day. The Omnibus Bill will come into use in a no-deal Brexit situation. A rush to the finish line With just over a month to go until Brexit day, the UK Prime Minister Theresa May is in Brussels attempting to get a solution to make the Irish backstop more palatable to her UK MPs. The Prime Minister met with President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker this week where agreement was made to review progress on the issue by the end of February.  In a joint statement, talks were said to be “constructive” and that “guarantees could be given with regard to the backstop that underlines once again its temporary nature and give the appropriate legal assurance to both sides.” There are reports that Mrs May wants some concrete plan to bring back to the UK Parliament next week.  If she doesn’t come up with something new by 27 February, she faces losing control of the Brexit process and the UK Parliament will be forced into delaying Brexit .

Feb 21, 2019