Irish VAT returns

Once registered for Irish VAT, companies must declare the transactions and pay over any tax due.

How often are Irish VAT returns required?

For the most part bi-monthly returns are required. These must be made using the VAT 3 return form.

Other reporting periods may be applicable. For example, businesses with an annual VAT liability of less than EUR3,000 are required to submit six-monthly returns and businesses with a VAT liability between EUR3,001 and EUR14,400 are assigned a four-monthly return period.

Businesses with a bi-monthly VAT liability of less than EUR50,000 may opt to make payments of VAT by monthly direct debit. In this case only a single annual VAT return is required. If there is a shortfall in VAT the balance should be paid when submitting the end-of-year (annual) VAT 3 return form.

In addition, all traders are required to complete an annual Return of Trading Details (RTD) form detailing purchases and sales, by VAT rate, for the year.

 What Irish VAT can be deducted?

As well as declaring the Irish VAT on any sales, the VAT return also allows for the listing of VAT on purchases (inputs) that can be offset against the sales VAT due. Excess input VAT will be refunded after a VAT return has been submitted. However, supporting documentation may be required by the Revenue Commissioners. Items which may not be deducted include:

  • food, drink and accommodation expenditure
  • certain motor vehicles
  • entertainment expenses
  • petrol purchases or imports (other than as stock-in-trade)

What are the reporting deadlines for Irish VAT returns?

All VAT returns are due on the 23rd day following the end of each tax period. The RTD is due within 23 days of the end of the accounting year.  Any VAT owed for the relevant period must be paid at the same time.

Where are Irish VAT returns filed?

Returns can be filed online with the “Revenue On-line Service” ROS at

Irish VAT penalties

Businesses are penalised if they fail to comply with Irish VAT law obligations. A standard penalty of EUR4,000 is charged for each misdemeanour e.g. failure to register for VAT, failure to comply with invoicing requirements, failure to file a VAT return on time, failure to keep proper books and records. In addition, interest can be charged by the Revenue Commissioners on late payment of VAT. The rate is currently set at 0.0274 per day on unpaid sums.

The VAT assessment period in Ireland is four years from the end of the taxable period.

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