Property tax to be taken from farm payments

Farmers as well as social welfare recipients will face having the property tax deducted from their State payments if do they not volunteer the levy.

The Government’s hard- line approach to the new tax became evident in the legislation published yesterday, which will give effect to the system.

Penalties of up to €3,000 will be imposed on those who knowingly under-declare the value of their properties in order to lower their tax bill.

People will also be fined up to €3,000 for failing to co-operate with the Revenue Commissioners, who will operate the system and collect the tax.

Interest will also be charged for late payment of the property tax. The interest will accrue on a daily basis and be equivalent to a rate of 8% per year.

Those eligible for the tax will be able to pay it in a range of ways, such as by direct debit, credit card, or having it deducted at source from pay packets.

Not all social welfare recipients will be eligible for the property tax, as there are a range of exemptions.

However, those who are eligible will be able to request the tax be deducted from their welfare payments if they find this an easier way of paying.

The same will be true for farmers, who can voluntarily request for it to be deducted from their agricultural scheme grants.

However, if recipients of welfare payments or farming grants do not make arrangements to pay the tax, Revenue will have the power to deduct it from their payments.

In such cases, Revenue will be obliged to first notify the recipients that they are preparing to deduct the tax from their payments.

The legislation will also see Revenue given the power to chase those who have not paid the €100 household charge.

While the charge is now being abolished to make way for the property tax, the Government is determined that those who have failed to pay it will not escape.

Anyone who has failed to pay the household charge by July, when the property tax comes into effect, will see the amount outstanding automatically doubled to €200.

It will then be attached by Revenue to the property tax due on the same property.

“Any liability to the household charge that remains undischarged on Jul 1, 2013, shall be treated as a charge of €200 to local property tax that is due and payable on that date, and cease to be treated as a household charge liability under the act of 2011,” the legislation states.

Those liable for the property tax will have until May 7 next to submit a self-assessment of how much they owe to the Revenue and a chosen method of payment. They will have until Jul 1 to pay the tax.

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