The Taxback.com survey revealed that 79% of people believe that the self-employed are treated “unfairly” to some extent when it comes to tax obligations, and of this group 45% believe the system to be “totally discriminatory”.

Barry Flanagan, Director at Taxback.com commented on the survey findings,

According to Census 2016 figures, there are over 300,000 self-employed people in Ireland – approximately 17% the country’s workforce. The tax treatment of this cohort of worker is something that’s never far from public discourse. The way our system is structured now means that if a self-employed person earns over €100k a year they pay a higher rate of USC and miss out on the PAYE tax credit. Also, those on lower incomes who work for themselves are worse off than those PAYE workers on low incomes, as they must pay higher rates of PRSI.

Obviously, there is some rationale behind this structure, but whether it amounts to a ‘fair and equitable system’ is the source of much debate. And it’s pretty clear from our survey what the general public think.”

Be “Guided”

Taxback.com have also launched a No-Nonsense Guide: “A 101 for anyone classed by Revenue as a ’self-assessed’ taxpayer”

Mr. Flanagan said the guide was developed on the back of years of feedback from clients who said they were confused by the system, or others who said they were totally unaware that they needed to file a tax return because they were PAYE employees,

The amount of people who fall into the self-assessed tax bracket goes far beyond those who simply work for themselves. Landlords, Airbnb hosts, anyone who earns income from their non-PAYE employment, be it from investment properties abroad or from online trading of the now popular cryptocurrencies – all of these people are legally required by law to file a tax return.

For this reason, there are varying levels of knowledge amongst self-assessed tax payers and while some hire professionals to do so on their behalf, others often endeavour to file the returns themselves. We hope our guide will be an initial reference point for anyone looking to find out more about not only their tax obligations but their tax entitlements too.”

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