Still time to access Revenue’s pragmatic approach to late filing surcharge

Dec 14, 2020

Taxpayers and accountants can still make an application to Revenue to agree the non-application of late filing surcharges on income tax returns due last Friday if the application is made to Revenue today.  As previously reported in Tax News, Revenue told the CCAB-I that it will take a pragmatic approach to surcharges on tax returns which could not be filed on time due to COVID-19 restrictions.  At a TALC meeting last week, Revenue confirmed that taxpayers and accountants could contact Revenue on Monday 14th December to apply for the non-application of surcharges. 

We understand that the process to access Revenue’s pragmatic approach to agreeing the non-application of late filing surcharges is as follows:

  • Revenue should be notified by Monday 14th December (the previous position was that Revenue should be notified in advance of the income tax deadline).
  • The notification should set out the list of clients and their PPSNs and this should be submitted via MyEnquiries.
  • The notification should set out the exceptional circumstances why the accountant is unable to make the deadline and provide a timeline when he or she expects to file the tax returns.
  • Revenue will reply to the notification and accept the request for the non-application of late filing surcharges or decline the request.
  • Surcharges will not be suspended where the tax agent/taxpayer has a record of filing tax returns late.

Revenue’s systems will automatically apply the surcharge and a caseworker in Revenue will lift the surcharge subsequently where the arrangement is agreed with Revenue.  Initial output from Revenue’s systems may indicate that the tax return is late and that a surcharge will apply, and this will then be reversed on foot of a manual update by a Revenue caseworker. It may be a good idea for accountants to explain the arrangement with clients in advance to avoid misunderstandings.