Belfast Telegraph

Revenue chief sorry over tax row

The Revenue chief has apologised to pensioners for the tax liability controversy.

Josephine Feehily, chairman of the Revenue Commissioners, admitted letters to 150,000 older people whose tax records were suspected of being incorrect could have been better phrased.

"We caused confusion, we caused distress to some people and I'm sincerely sorry for that," she said.

Ms Feehily said it was also too early to determine the scale of the impact on around 115,000 pensioners who have either under-declared or who have not at all reported their pension payments.

"The range and complexity of these records makes it impossible to give a simple answer and we need to understand it better," she said.

However a random sample suggests previously untaxed income in some cases could be as much as 18,000 euro, while more than a third were liable to pay tax on an extra 2,000 euro.

Revenue has come under attack from organisations representing older people for their handling of the fall-out, which emerged after updated records from the Department of Social Protection were sent to the tax-collectors.

Worried pensioners who have not been contacted are continuing to call Revenue about their tax liabilities, said Ms Feehily.

However she said there was no further tranche of letters to go out and those who had not received one need not worry.

"I can say to those who did not get a letter that you should not be concerned," she said.


From Belfast Telegraph