Tuesday, 2 November 2004
Dáil Eireann Debate
263. Mr. R. Bruton asked the Minister for Finance if he has received representations regarding the new regime for charging benefit-in-kind in respect of the use of a company car; if these queries have caused him to reconsider any elements of the operation of this scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [26798/04]
Minister for Finance (Mr. Cowen): A relatively small number of representations on the use of company cars have been received since the introduction of the new benefit-in-kind arrangements in January 2004. Queries have principally related to the fact that PRSI and the health levy now apply to the benefit of a company car with some issues also being raised about the new structure.
As announced in the budget for 2003, the general change was intended to ensure equity of treatment of taxpayers receiving remuneration in different forms. The new system introduced a revised and simplified structure on company provided cars with four different tapered rates applying where previously there were seventeen. This simplification was aimed at making it easier for employers to operate PAYE and PRSI in respect of company cars. It is estimated that the move to this new structure will result in a reduced tax take of €4 million to the Exchequer.
At the operational level, the Revenue Commissioners have indicated that the new system is being implemented generally without difficulty and is operating as intended. The queries raised thus far have not led me to reconsider the new regime.
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