Revenue has announced that it will withhold rental payments Irish emigrants receive for their former homes if they fail to pay the local property tax
Many Irish people have emigrated and now rent out their houses in Ireland to make extra cash to pay off their Celtic Tiger era mortgages. Originally it was thought that pursuing emigrants for payment of the local property tax would be difficult, but as Revenue has pointed out, by law emigrants receiving rental income for their properties must declare it for tax purposes. The Revenue have the option of simply taking the amount of property tax owed by putting an attachment order on these payments, or the bank account they are paid into.
Revenue have reiterated that Irish emigrants still have an obligation to pay local property tax on any Irish property they owe, even if they no longer reside there, and that they will send property tax letters to the emigrants using the addresses they supplied. If Irish emigrants do not comply, Revenue will begin requesting taxation information from tax authorities in the country in which they reside and may even use its powers under tax agreements to force collection agencies to retrieve the tax from them. Anyone planning to pay the local property tax by credit card is reminded that there may be hidden charges of up to 1.49% per payment.
For those wishing to pay by installments, there is a €1 charge for doing so on every LPT payment at your local post office. While it might not seem like much, it can add a huge amount on to your final bill, and the lower your property tax band, the higher the proportionate charge you'll have to pay.
For example, a person with an annual property tax of €90 will end up paying an additional €52 in fees per year, if they pay in weekly installments through their post office. According to An Post, the extra fee covers the additional cost incurred for their provision of the payment service on behalf of Revenue. Payzone outlets will also allow you to make weekly property tax payments, but their additional charge is still €0.75 per payment, which works out at an extra €39 over the course of a year. Omnivend kiosks will be the cheapest option for people wishing to pay weekly, charging just 7 cent per payments, or a total of €3.50 over a year.
Those who pay by credit card will be charged an additional €1.49, whereas paying by bank or debit card will incur an additional fee of just 30 cent. Deducting the LPT directly from an individuals salary, state benefits or pension will be free of extra charges. The Revenue began sending out Local Property Tax letters in March. LPT payments via direct debit and automatic deduction from Payslips will begin from July. Should you elect to pay by credit or debit card the payment will, as usual, be deducted immediately.