Revenue Note for Guidance

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Revenue Note for Guidance

68. Flat-rate farmer invoices and other documents


This section covers the rules in relation to invoices and other documents that must be issued by flat-rate farmers in respect of the supply of an agricultural produce or an agricultural service. Changes in invoices, credit notes, debit notes and settlement vouchers are also covered.


(1) The invoice that an unregistered farmer is obliged to issue under section 86 in respect of the supply of agricultural produce or an agricultural service must be issued if the purchaser—

(a) requests the issue of the invoice,

(b) provides and completes the invoice, and

(c) gives the farmer a copy.

Nevertheless, the unregistered farmer may, if he/she wishes, issue an invoice even if these conditions are not met.

(2) Subsection (2) provides for a situation in which after the issue of the original flat-rate farmer’s invoice the consideration is increased or reduced. It provides that:

  • (2)(a) If the consideration is increased, the farmer must issue a further invoice for the additional amount on the same terms as the original invoice.
  • (2)(b) If the consideration is reduced, the farmer must issue a “farmer credit note.” The amount that the customer can deduct under Chapter 1 of Part 8 or is entitled to be repaid by way of refund in respect of exports must be reduced accordingly.

(3) Subsection (3) provides for the issue of a “farmer debit note” by a person entitled to receive a “farmer credit note” in accordance with the general rules relating to debit notes – see section 67(2).

(4) Subsection (4) authorises the use of a settlement voucher instead of an invoice required to be issued by a farmer in respect of supplies to registered persons. The settlement voucher is issued by the person to whom goods or services are supplied. This follows normal commercial practice, but it is provided that the substitution can only be made by agreement between the parties.

  • (4)(i) The person who issues the settlement voucher is deemed to have received an invoice.
  • (4)(ii) The person who accepts the settlement voucher is deemed to have issued an invoice.

(5) All the provisions of the VAT Act that apply to credit notes and debit notes generally will also apply to farmer credit notes and farmer debit notes respectively.

Note that two provisions that are relevant are the inspection provision in section 108 and the penalty provisions in section 115.

Subsection (6) provides that an invoice, settlement voucher or other document showing the flat-rate addition cannot be issued by or on behalf of a flat-rate farmer in respect of supplies of agricultural produce or services specified in an order made under section 86A.

Relevant Date: Finance Act 2020