Repayments to Unregistered Persons

Introduction and enquiries

This information leaflet sets out the various schemes for repayment of VAT to persons who are not registered for VAT in the State.

Except where stated otherwise in the following paragraphs, all claims and enquiries relating to repayments to unregistered persons should be made to the Office of the Revenue Commissioners, VAT Unregistered Repayments, Sarsfield House, Francis Street, Limerick. (Telephone Lo-call 1890 252449 or 00353 61 488060, Fax 00353 61 488095, email unregvat@revenue.ie). Similarly, except where stated otherwise, all claim forms referred to in this leaflet may be obtained from that Office, on request, or downloaded from the VAT Forms menu on this website.

Foreign businesses paying Irish VAT

The general position is that, under the terms of the EU VAT Directive 2008/9/EEC or the Thirteenth Council Directive, a person who is engaged in business outside the State, and who is not engaged in business in the State, may claim repayment of Irish VAT on most business purchases in Ireland.

Businesses established in another EU Member State

The system for EU registered Traders changed with effect from 01/01/2010

Significant new EU legislation (Council Directive 2008/9/EEC) came into effect on 1st January 2010. On this date, a new electronic VAT refund procedure was introduced across the EU for all claims submitted by traders established within the EU. This operates under Council Directive 2006/112/EU. Revenue and Tax Authorities of other EU Member States will not accept paper based applications after 1st January 2010. The revised procedure is as follows:

If your business is established in another EU Member State,

  • From 01/01/2010, Revenue will not accept paper based applications for a refund of VAT.
  • You will be required to submit an electronic application for a VAT refund to the Tax Authority of that Member State rather than directly to Revenue as at present.
  • The goods/services giving rise to the claim must be goods/services in respect of which VAT would be deductible if the claimant's business was carried on in Ireland and must not include goods for supply within the State.

General FAQ's

Additional FAQ's for VAT registered traders established in another EU Member State making a VAT refund application to Revenue

Under New Intra-Communtity VAT Rules on Place of Supply For Services introduced on 1 January 2010, most supplies of Business to Business (B2B) services are taxed where the recipient is established (reverse charge). For exceptions and further information see Revenue Information Leaflet: New Intra-Community VAT Rules on Place of Supply of Services

Businesses established outside the EU

Thirteenth Directive Claims (claims from taxable persons established outside the EU) will continue to be dealt with as previously.

The main conditions governing repayment are:

  • Where the claimant is carrying on business outside of the European Union s/he must provide written proof of economic activity issued by the competent authority of his/her own State;
  • the goods/services giving rise to the claim must be goods/services in respect of which tax would be deductible if the claimant’s business was carried on in Ireland, and must not include goods for supply within the State or motor vehicles for hiring out for utilisation within the State;
  • the business for which the goods/services were purchased must be a business which would be taxable if carried on in Ireland;
  • application for repayment is made by way of pdfForm VAT 60OEC (PDF, 71KB) - Application for Refund of Value-Added Tax (VAT) by a taxable person not established in Ireland (13th Directive);

Claims for repayment must be lodged within six months of the end of the year in which the tax paid became chargeable.

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Zero-rating of services supplied to foreign traders (VAT 60A Procedure)

From 1 January 2010 under the new rules for the place of supply of services, most services provided by Irish suppliers to foreign taxable traders within the EU are taxable on a reverse charge basis and so are not subject to Irish VAT. Under the new rules the supply of services for Business to Business customers outside the EU is not liable to Irish VAT. For further information see Revenue Information Leaflet: New Intra-Community VAT Rules on Place of Supply for Services.

Foreign traders in receipt of taxable services from Irish traders on a regular and continuous basis may apply to have those services relieved from VAT. In this way, the necessity of applying to Revenue for VAT repayments is avoided.

Application for relief is made by way of pdfForm VAT 60A (PDF, 197KB) - Application by a Foreign Trader who is not established in Ireland for relief from Value-Added Tax (VAT) on charges for Services supplied to it by Irish Supplier(s). Traders established in EU Member States must submit a certificate of taxable status with their applications confirming that they are VAT-registered in another Member State of the EU. Traders established outside of the EU must provide proof of economic activity issued by the competent authority of their own State.

This relief is subject to periodic review. Generally, it is made available and is valid for a two-year period, but may be renewed on application. The relief does not apply to supplies of taxable goods.

Farm buildings or structures, land drainage and land reclamation

Farmers who are not registered for VAT may reclaim VAT paid by them in relation to the construction, extension, alteration or reconstruction of farm buildings and structures or on land drainage and land reclamation. Claims for such repayment should be made on pdfForm VAT 58 (PDF, 170KB) - Claim by Unregistered Farmer for Refund of Value-Added Tax (VAT) under the Value Added Tax (Refund of Tax) (No. 25) Order 1993.

Farmers who are registered for VAT only in respect of their intra-Community acquisitions or certain services received from abroad are similarly entitled to repayment but must claim this refund as a deduction or input credit in their VAT return.

Applications for repayment must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates.

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Sea fishing vessels and equipment

The purchase, intra-Community acquisition, importation, hire, maintenance and repair of sea-fishing vessels of a gross tonnage of not more than 15 tons are liable to VAT. An unregistered fisherman may claim repayment of such VAT provided the fishing vessel concerned has been the subject of a grant or loan from An Bord Iascaigh Mhara.

An unregistered fisherman may also claim repayment of VAT on the purchase, intra-Community acquisition, importation, hire, maintenance and repair of specified fishing equipment. If the vessel for which the equipment is intended is not more than 15 tons (gross tonnage), it is a condition that the vessel must have been the subject of a grant or loan from An Bord Iascaigh Mhara. Repayment in respect of equipment for a vessel of more than 15 tons (gross tonnage) may be claimed whether or not the vessel was the subject of a grant or loan.

The following are specified fishing equipment:

  • Anchors, autopilots, bilge and deck pumps, buoys and floats, compasses, cranes, echo graphs, echo sounders, electrical generating sets, fish boxes, fish finders, fishing baskets, life boats and life rafts, marine lights, marine engines, net drums, net hauliers, net sounders, radar apparatus, radio navigational aid apparatus, radio telephones, refrigeration plant, trawl doors, trawl gallows and winches.

Application for repayment should be made on Form VAT 58A available from the Central Repayments Office, M: TEK II Building, Armagh Road, Monaghan (Telephone. 00353 47 62100) and should be returned to this address. Applications for repayment must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates.

There is no provision for relief on other equipment or materials purchased for the carrying out of repair or maintenance work by an unregistered fisherman himself or by any other unregistered person.

Marine diesel

An unregistered fisherman may claim repayment of VAT paid on the purchase, intra-Community acquisition or importation of marine diesel. Mineral oil tax on such marine diesel may also be reclaimed by both VAT-registered and unregistered fishermen. Claims for repayment of VAT and mineral oil tax should be made on claim Form C & E No. 1131/VAT 5813, which may be obtained from the local Revenue District or Central Repayments Office. Applications for repayment should be made to the Central Repayments Office, M: TEK II Building, Armagh Road, Monaghan (Telephone: +353 47 62100).

Applications for repayment of VAT must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates. Claims for repayment of mineral oil tax are to be made in respect of mineral oil used within a period of not less than one and not more than six calendar months. The time limit for mineral oil tax claims is four months following the end of the claim period. Claims lodged outside the prescribed time limit may not be paid except in exceptional circumstances.

VAT charged at point of importation by customs

Repayment of VAT charged at import where the VAT was not legally owed, e.g. VAT overpaid due to miscalculation, may be made by the Central Repayments Office, M: TEK II Building, Armagh Road, Monaghan (Telephone. 00353 47 62100).

Application must first be made to the local Revenue District where the VAT was charged.

Applications for repayment must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates.

Sea and Inland Waterways Rescue craft

Qualifying groups may reclaim VAT incurred on outlay on small sea rescue craft (15 tons gross tonnage or less), ancillary equipment and special boat buildings used exclusively in connection with rescue or assistance at sea/inland waterways or with the training of persons for such purposes. Application for repayment should be made on pdfForm VAT 70 (PDF, 278KB) - Claim for Refund of Value-Added Tax (VAT) on Sea and Inland Waterways Rescue Boat or Craft/Equipment/Boathouse under the Value-Added Tax (Refund of Tax) (No. 249) Order, 2013.

Applications for repayment must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates.

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Disabled Persons

Repayment may be claimed for VAT paid in relation to vehicles for use (a) by severely and permanently disabled persons as drivers or passengers, or (b) by organisations for the transport of severely and permanently disabled persons. There is also provision for the repayment of, and in certain circumstances, the remission of Vehicle Registration Tax in respect of such vehicles.

Application forms and public notices relating to the relief are available from the Central Repayments Office, M: TEK II Building, Armagh Road, Monaghan (Telephone. 00353 47 62100).

Applications for repayment must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates.

Disabled persons - Aids and Appliances

Disabled persons may reclaim VAT paid on certain aids and appliances. The relief is also available in certain circumstances to persons other than disabled persons who purchase such goods for handing over to a particular disabled person. Applications for repayment should be made on pdfForm VAT 61A (PDF, 127KB) - Claim for Refund of Value-Added Tax (VAT) chargeable on aids and appliances for use by Disabled Persons under the Value-Added Tax (Refund of Tax) (No. 15) Order 1981.

Applications for repayment must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates.

Radios for the blind

An institution or society having for its primary object the amelioration of the lot of blind persons may claim repayment of the VAT paid by it on the purchase or importation of radio sets which are intended for the use of blind persons. Application for repayment should be made on pdfForm VAT 59 (PDF, 119KB) - Claim by an Institution/Society for Refund of Value-Added Tax (VAT) paid in respect of radio broadcasting reception apparatus intended for use by blind persons under section 20(2) of the Value-Added Tax Act 1972.

Applications for repayment must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates.

Residential caravans and mobile homes

VAT in excess of the standard rate which has been paid on the supply or importation of a caravan, mobile home, or similar structure, which is purchased by a person as a residence or, in the case of a local authority, provided for letting as a residence may be reclaimed. Application for repayment should be made on pdfForm VAT 62 (PDF, 70KB).

Applications for repayment must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates.

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Irish companies providing certain services outside the State

In certain circumstances a person who conducts a business from within the State, but who does not supply goods or services in the State, may claim a refund of deductible VAT on outlay on goods or services. For example, an Irish bank or insurance company providing services outside the EU, which are not taxable in this country, may be entitled to claim relief as a 'foreign' business. Applications for refunds should be made on pdfForm VAT 60E (PDF, 138KB) - Claim for Refund of Value-Added Tax (VAT) by an Unregistered Person established in the State in respect of outlay on "Qualifying Activities"

Applications for repayment must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates.

Touring Coaches

Subject to certain conditions, persons who are engaged in the business of the carriage for reward of tourists by road, under contracts for group transport, may reclaim VAT incurred on the purchase, intra-community acquisition, lease/hire of touring coaches. Application for repayments should be made on pdfForm VAT 71 (PDF, 164KB) - Claim for Refund of Value-Added Tax (VAT) on Certain Touring Coaches under the Value Added Tax (Refund of Tax) (No. 28) Order 1996 (as amended).

Applications for repayment must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates.

Donated medical equipment

Repayment of VAT incurred on the purchase or importation of new medical instruments and appliances (excluding means of transport), which is purchased through voluntary donations, may be claimed by hospitals or donors, as appropriate, subject to conditions. The principal conditions are that the instrument or appliance must be:

  • €25,390 or more in value (exclusive of tax),
  • designed and manufactured for use solely in medical research or in diagnosis, prevention or treatment of illness,
  • such that no part of the funds used in the purchase of the goods is provided directly or indirectly by the State, a State body or any public or local authority, and
  • subject to a recommendation by the Minister for Health and Children that having regard to the requirements of the health services in the State, a refund of tax would be appropriate.

Applications for repayments should be made on pdfForm VAT 72 (PDF, 527KB) - Claim for Refund of Value-Added Tax (VAT) on certain Medical Instruments and Appliances under the Value-Added Tax (Refund of Tax) (No. 23) Order 1992.

Applications for repayment must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates.

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Donated Research Equipment

Repayment of VAT incurred in the purchase or importation of any new instrument or appliance (excluding means of transport), which is purchased through voluntary donations, may be claimed by a research institution or a university, school or similar educational body engaged in medical research in a laboratory. The principal conditions are that the instrument or appliance be:-

  • €25,390 or more in value (exclusive of tax),
  • designed and manufactured for use in medical research,
  • such that no part of the funds used in the purchase of the goods is provided, directly or indirectly, by the State, a State body or any public or local authority, and
  • subject to a recommendation by the Health Research Board that, having regard to the requirements of medical research in the State, a refund of tax would be appropriate.

Application for repayment should be made on pdfForm VAT 72A (PDF, 214KB) - Claim for Refund of Value-Added Tax (VAT) on certain Medical Research Equipment under the Value-Added Tax (Refund of Tax) (No. 27) Order 1995.

Applications for repayment must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates.

Humanitarian goods

Philanthropic organisations may reclaim VAT paid on the supply in, or importation into, the State of goods which are exported or re-exported for use in the organisations’ humanitarian, charitable or teaching activities abroad.

Application for repayment should be made on pdfForm VAT 73 (PDF, 128KB) - Claim for Refund of Value-Added Tax (VAT) on Humanitarian Goods for Export under the Value-Added Tax (Refund of Tax) (No. 21) Order 1987.

Applications for repayment must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates.

Investment gold

Where exempt supplies of investment gold are made, the VAT incurred on the supply, transformation, change of form and on the goods and services linked to the production of or transformation into investment gold may be refunded in certain circumstances.

Application for repayment should be made on pdfForm VAT 90 (PDF, 267KB) - Claim for Refund of Value Added Tax (VAT) incurred on gold under Section 90 Vat Act 2010.

Applications for repayment must be submitted within four years from the end of the taxable period to which the claim relates.

Further information

Enquiries regarding any issue contained in this Information Leaflet should be addressed to the Revenue District responsible for the taxpayer's affairs. Contact details for all Revenue Districts can be found on the Contact Details Page.

VAT Interpretation Branch,
Indirect Taxes Division,
Stamping Building
Dublin Castle.

July 2014

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