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VAT registration for a business seeking to locate to Ireland

Jarlath O'Keefe Jarlath O'Keefe


Following the UK referendum on Brexit, many businesses have chosen and others will choose Ireland as an EU headquarters for doing business. Of course many commercial, legal and tax decisions will have to be made and the purpose of our guide is to provide a synopsis of the Irish VAT registration and filing requirements for businesses locating to Ireland.

Irish VAT Registration Requirements
Under Irish VAT legislation, a business is required to register for Irish VAT where any of the below thresholds are exceeded (or likely to be exceeded) in a continuous 12 month period:

  • turnover from the supply of taxable services exceeds €37,500;
  • turnover from the supply of taxable goods exceeds €75,000;
  • turnover from the supply of taxable goods and services with a value over €75,000, where 90% or more of the turnover is in relation to goods; or
  • acquisition of goods from other European Union Member States exceeds €41,000.

In addition, if the business is in receipt of services from outside the State (i.e. professional fees), they must register for Irish VAT regardless of value (i.e. there is a nil threshold for the receipt of such services).

VAT registration

Grant Thornton can complete the necessary forms to register a business for Irish VAT with the Revenue Commissioners, together with any other Irish taxes if necessary. We can also set up the business on Revenue’s Online Service (“ROS”) as all VAT filings must be made online via ROS and all VAT refunds/liabilities are similarly processed via ROS.

The Irish Revenue authorities are now insisting that payment of any VAT due is made online from a bank account which must be located at a bank branch in Ireland or in a SEPA country.

Obligatory VAT Filings

Once it has been established that a business must register for Irish VAT, the business must file the following returns:

  • VAT3 Returns

The business will be required to file VAT3 returns with Irish Revenue Commissioners on a bi-monthly basis (i.e. six returns), which are due for submission on the 23rd day following the relevant period. For example, the January/February VAT return is due for submission by 23 March.

  • Annual Return of Trading Details

In addition, the business is also required to file one detailed annual return (showing trading details), at the end of its financial year i.e. 31 March year end would mean the annual return should be filed by 23 April.

Potential VAT filings

  • VIES Returns

VIES returns capture sales of zero rated goods and services to VAT registered customers in other EU Member States. Where such goods or services are supplied, a VIES statement must be submitted on a quarterly basis, regardless of value. Where the value of goods being supplied exceed €50,000 per quarter it is necessary to file monthly VIES returns. The returns are due by the 23rd day of the month following the period covered by the return, e.g. the July return is due by 23 August.

  • Intrastat Returns

Detailed Intrastat returns capture statistical information about the movement of goods between Ireland and other EU Member States.  The calendar year filing thresholds for these returns are as follows:

  • €500,000 for arrivals of goods into Ireland from EU Member States
  • €635,000 for dispatches of goods from Ireland to EU Member States

These returns are filed monthly and should be submitted to the Irish Revenue by the 23rd day of the following month.

Information required on a valid Irish VAT invoice

The following information is required for an invoice to be deemed valid from an Irish VAT perspective:

  • the date of issue of the invoice;
  • invoice number;
  • the full name, address and the registration number of the business that supplied the goods or services to which the invoice relates;
  • the full name and address of the business to whom the goods or services were supplied;
  • in the case of a reverse charge supply the VAT number of the business to whom the supply was made and an indication that a reverse charge applies;
  • in the case of a supply of goods, other than a reverse charge supply, to a business registered for VAT in another Member State, the business’s VAT number in that Member State and an indication that the invoice relates to an intra-Community supply of goods;
  • the quantity and nature of the goods supplied or the extent and nature of the services rendered;
  • the date on which the goods or services were supplied or, in the case of early payment prior to the completion of the supply, the date on which the payment on account was made, in so far as that date differs from the date of issue of the invoice;
  • in respect of the goods or services supplied:
    • the unit price exclusive of VAT;
    • any discounts or price reductions not included in the unit price; and
    • the consideration exclusive of VAT.
  •   in respect of the goods or services supplied, other than reverse charge supplies:

    a. the consideration exclusive of tax for each rate (including zero-rate) of VAT; and
    b. the rate of VAT chargeable.
  • If a VAT invoice is required to be issued, it must be issued within fifteen days of the end of the month in which goods or services are supplied.


Please contact us to discuss opportunities for your business, to determine how we can add value or to ensure your business is compliant from a VAT perspective.