Registration for charities

Generally, many of the activities carried out by charities are considered to be either outside the scope of, or exempt from, Value-Added Tax (VAT). Charities engaged exclusively in such activities are neither obliged, nor entitled, to register and account for VAT on their income.

In certain circumstances, the activities of a charity may be considered to be in competition with commercial traders. The charity may then be required to register and account for VAT on these activities. This should be evaluated with respect to the particular activity of the charity and may be identified by reference to actual competition or potential competition. 

A charity, or other non-taxable legal person, is obliged to register and account for VAT in respect of intra-Community acquisitions who:

  • acquire
  • or
  • is likely to acquire

more than €41,000 worth of goods from other EU Member States in any period of twelve months. Registration for intra-Community acquisitions only, does not give VAT deduction rights to these entities.

A charity or other non-taxable legal person registered for VAT in respect of intra-Community acquisitions, or other activities, is obliged to account for VAT on received services from abroad. Where such entities are not otherwise registered for VAT they are not obliged to register in respect of received services.