Revenue Note for Guidance

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Revenue Note for Guidance

1061 Recovery of penalties


This section, which applies up to the passing of the Finance (No. 2) Act 2008 (24 December 2008), outlines a method of recovery of penalties by way of institution of civil proceedings for a liquidated sum in a Court of competent jurisdiction. At present the monetary jurisdiction of the District and Circuit Courts are €6,348.69 (£5,000) and €38,092.14 (£30,000) respectively. While sections 13 and 14 of the Courts and Courts Officers Act 2002 provide for an increase in these limits, those sections have not yet been commenced.


(1) Regardless of the modes of recovery for the penalties outlined in the following provisions —

  • penalties for failure to make certain returns, etc (section 1052),
  • penalty for fraudulently or negligently making incorrect returns, etc (section 1053),
  • increased penalties in the case of body of persons (section 1054),
  • penalty for assisting in making incorrect returns, etc (section 1055),
  • penalty for false statement made to obtain allowance (section 1056),
  • fine for obstruction of officers in execution of duties (section 1057),
  • refusal to allow deduction of tax (section 1058),
  • power to add penalties to assessments (section 1059),
  • proceedings against executor or administrator (section 1060),
  • penalty for certain failures connected with Revenue’s access to records, information and premises (Chapter 4 of Part 38),
  • income tax allowances by means of discharge or repayment of tax (section 305(4)),
  • retirement annuities (section 783(6)),
  • purchased life annuities (section 789(5)), and
  • obligation to keep certain records (section 886(5)),

an officer of the Revenue Commissioners may institute Court proceedings for recovery of the penalty as a liquidated amount provided that officer is so authorised by the Revenue Commissioners.

(2) If the authorised officer, who has initiated the proceedings, or his/her authorised replacement, who has continued such proceedings, dies or otherwise ceases to be so authorised —

  • the Revenue Commissioners must nominate a replacement authorised officer if the proceedings are to be continued, and
  • the nominated replacement is entitled to be substituted as a party to the proceedings and must serve notice of such substitution to the defendant in the proceedings.

(3) In proceedings under this section a certificate signed by a Revenue Commissioner certifying that a person is an officer of the Revenue Commissioners and has been authorised to institute Court proceedings of the type allowed by this section is evidence of those facts until the contrary is proved.

(4) In proceedings under this section, in which the plaintiff has been replaced by another officer of the Revenue Commissioners under subsection (2), a certificate to that effect signed by a Revenue Commissioner is evidence of that fact until the contrary has been proved.

(5) A certificate certifying the facts referred to in subsection (3) or (4) and purporting to be signed by a Revenue Commissioner may be tendered in evidence without proof and is deemed to have been so signed until the contrary is proved.

(6) The rules of court, applicable to civil proceedings, apply to proceedings initiated under this section.

(7) This section only applies up to the passing of the Finance (No. 2) Act 2008 (24 December 2008).

Relevant Date: Finance Act 2021