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Covid 19 Updates

Useful Links and Practical Guidance on the BREXIT area

Good morning,

 

I enclose below  a Brexit summary from our auditors, PKF, O’Connor, Leddy & Holmes. This contains references to useful links and practical guidance on the Brexit area.

 

Are you brexit ready?
Good Afternoon Irish Franchise Association member,
2020 has been a very challenging year, to put it mildly, and amid all of the issues faced with the Pandemic, Brexit negotiations have been continuing in the background although reports on a deal being achieved are not encouraging.

 

The UK transition period ends 31 December 2020 and planning for a “No free trade deal” scenario seems sensible right now as we interpret recent announcements by the UK Government that we will be trading with them on World Trade Organisation (WTO) terms from the 1 January 2021. This may change after this date but for now, we must move forward with our planning.

 

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade have a support web site:

 

https://www.dfa.ie/brexit/getting-ireland-brexit-ready/brexit-and-business/

 

They state: “No matter what the final shape of Brexit looks like, the decision of the UK to leave the EU will result in some changes, both here in Ireland and for our EU partners, which we will continue to prepare for. It is important that businesses continue to plan and prepare for Brexit and the change it will bring.”

Government Action & Supports

Since the UK took the decision to leave the EU, the Government has put in place a number of supports to help businesses, of all shapes and sizes and across all sectors of the economy, to prepare for Brexit. Whether you are a local business or a major multinational, there are a number of steps that you can take now for your business to ensure that you’re Getting Brexit Ready.

 

Practical guidance is available on the Gov.ie website:

 

https://www.gov.ie/en/campaigns/b2c18-getting-ireland-brexit-ready/?referrer=http://www.gov.ie/brexit/
They have prepared “The Brexit Readiness Action Plan”. In this document, the Government acknowledges that with the scale and interconnectedness of the EU-UK relationship mean they cannot entirely eliminate the possibility of disruption. They state that by working together we can reduce the burden and impact arising from the end of the transition period.

Current Brexit support schemes available to businesses include:

  • The Brexit Loan Scheme: providing affordable working capital to eligible businesses with up to 499 employees that are exposed to current or future impacts arising as a result of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. This scheme is underpinned by a guarantee from the European Investment Fund (EIF).
  • The Future Growth Loan Scheme (FGLS): providing long-term lending to SMEs, and the agricultural sector, with terms of 7-10 years, to support strategic investment for future sustainability and growth. This scheme is underpinned by a guarantee from the European Investment Fund and has recently been expanded to make up to €800 million available.
  • Enterprise Ireland provides a range of financial supports aimed at Brexit Readiness including the Act On Initiative, Be Prepared Grant, Strategic Consultancy, Market Discover Fund, and the Agile and Operational Excellence offer.
  • Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs) can offer support in accessing a number of financial supports for businesses to prepare for Brexit, including TAME Grants, Trading On-line Vouchers and Micro Finance Ireland Loans. LEOs can also provide advice on other supports available through InterTrade Ireland and the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI).
  • InterTradeIreland provides a range of Brexit supports and advice through its Brexit Advisory Service. As well as support through voucher funding, the Brexit Advisory Service also offer a tailor-made online learning tool, a tariff checker, a glossary of key Brexit terminology, research, networking and information events
  • The Government recommends business should now:
  • Identify the appropriate preparedness and economic supports to assist their preparation for the impact of Brexit.
  • Engage with relevant departments and agencies as well as representative bodies to take advantage of the financial and information resources being provided.
  • Representative bodies should explore opportunities to engage with departments and agencies on organising seminars or webinars for their members.

Planning Support

Here is our summary of actions we recommend clients look at to help with planning for the start of the new trading relationship with the UK from the 1 January 2021.
  • Export rules are specific by sector so review: https://revenue.ie/en/customs-traders-and-agents/index.aspx
  • In the event of “no free trade deal” all exports and imports to the UK will be subject to tariffs under the rules of the World Trade Organisation (WTO). You will need to identify where “inputs” come from and which categories of product they fall into so you can work out the tariffs that will apply. Review WTO rates online and check the Tariff data for your business. See: https://www.worg/english/tratop_e/tariffs_e/tariff_data_e.htm
  • If you currently have business agreements with UK companies these may need to be redrafted to cover off areas such as customs arrangements, import duties, how VAT is accounted for, definitions such as “Territory”, dispute resolution and unanticipated administration as a result of Brexit. Consult your Solicitor for advice to avoid any potential issues sooner rather than later.
  • Copyrights, Intellectual Property (IP) and trademarks: At this point in time it is not clear if EU trademarks would be applicable in the UK post-Brexit. If you own intellectual property rights contact your Solicitor on protecting your IP post Brexit.
  • Personal data – At the end of the transition period, the UK will no longer be bound by the European Union’s data protection legislation. Transfers of personal data to the UK can continue but they must comply with the rules and safeguards for transferring such data to non-EU countries as outlined in the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) or in the Law Enforcement Directive. If your organisation shares personal data with organisations based in the UK (including Northern Ireland as the scope of the Protocol on Ireland and Northern Ireland does not include the EU GDPR Regulation), you must ensure that you comply with the relevant Union rules applicable to transfers of personal data to third countries. Please be aware these rules may change. See: https://www.dataprotection.ie/
  • Consider forming a company in the UK. Talk to us about how we can help you with our colleagues in the UK.
  • Download the Government’s “Brexit Readiness Action Plan” here: https://www.dfa.ie/media/dfa/eu/brexit/keydocuments/Brexit-Readiness-Action-Plan.pdf

Please contact a member of our Business Services team for further advice and assistance on this matter;

Tony Kelly, Partner – t.kelly@pkf.ie

 

Susan Wylie, Partner – s.wylie@pkf.ie

 

Liam Farrell, Director – l.farrell@pkf.ie

 

Nigel Mayberry, Director – n.mayberry@pkf.ie
 
Century House, Harold’s Cross Road, Dublin 6W, Republic of Ireland.
Tel: +353 1 496 1444 | Email: contact@pkf.ie
www.pkf.ie

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Covid Restrictions Support Scheme

 

Good afternoon,

 

See note below from our Auditors, PKF, O’Connor, Leddy & Holmes on The Covid Restrictions Support Scheme(CRSS),recently introduced support for eligible businesses significantly impacted by restrictions introduced by the government under public health regulations to combat the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

Find out if you are eligible for this support
Good Afternoon Irish Franchise Association members,

 

The Covid Restrictions Support Scheme(CRSS) is a recently introduced support for eligible businesses significantly impacted by restrictions introduced by the government under public health regulations to combat the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The key features of the scheme are:

  • CRSS is designed to assist those businesses whose trade has been significantly impacted or temporarily closed as a result of the restrictions as set out in the government’s ‘Living with COVID-19’ Plan.
  • The scheme will generally operate when Level 3 or higher is in place and will cease when restrictions are lifted.
  • The scheme will apply to businesses where government restrictions prohibit or reduce access by customers to their business premises. Where a qualifying person carries on more than one eligible business activity from separate business premises, a claim in respect of each activity can be made.
  • To qualify under the scheme, a business must be able to demonstrate that, because of the COVID-19 restrictions, the turnover of the business in the period for which the restrictions are in operation, and for which a claim is made, will be no more than 25% of an amount equal to the average weekly turnover of the business in 2019 (or average weekly turnover in 2020 in the case of a new business) multiplied by the number of weeks in the period for which a claim is made.
  • A qualifying person will be able to make a claim to Revenue under the CRSS for a cash payment to be known as an “Advance Credit for Trading Expenses”. This payment will be equal to 10% of their average weekly turnover in 2019 up to €20,000 and 5% thereafter, subject to a maximum weekly payment of €5,000, for each week that their business is affected by the COVID-19 restrictions.
 

Weekly turnover

Rate

Amount

First €20,000

10%

€2,000

Next €60,000

5%

€3,000

Maximum payment

€5,000

 

The scheme will operate from 13 October 2020 to 31 March 2021 and there is provision for the Minister for Finance to vary aspects of the scheme.

To register for CRSS, the eligible business must:

  • make a declaration that it meets the eligibility criteria for the scheme
  • have tax clearance
  • and
  • provide certain information in relation to the business activity, the business premises and previous turnover details.
The relevant turnover details provided as part of the registration process must be consistent with the information included in the relevant tax returns of the business and will be validated against the information already held on Revenue systems.

 

Revenue has published an overview of the scheme with some detailed examples, together with guidance on the operation of the scheme which can be found here;

 

Guidelines on the CRSS

 

Contact the team at PKF today if you have any queries or for any further information, we are here to help.

 

Also, a reminder to all, don’t forget to download our PKF app today on the links below or by searching for “PKF OCLH” in the App store on your device.

 

Kind Regards,

 

PKF O’Connor, Leddy & Holmes
 
Century House, Harold’s Cross Road, Dublin 6W, Republic of Ireland.
Tel: +353 1 496 1444 | Email: contact@pkf.ie
www.pkf.ie

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Rates waiver and tax measures

See below a reminder of some of rates waivers and tax measures introduced during Covid 19. There is a separate link to each measure where available.

  • Commercial rates waiver: With limited exceptions, all businesses will be granted a waiver of commercial rates for the six months to end-September 2020. Updates will be available on housing.gov.ie and from local authorities.
  • ‘Warehousing’ of deferred tax debts: The scheme, administered by Revenue, will ‘warehouse’ VAT and PAYE (Employer) debts associated with the COVID-19 crisis.
  • Reduction in the standard rate of VAT: A six-month reduction in the standard rate of Value-Added Tax (VAT) from 23% to 21% will apply, effective from 1 September 2020.
  • Stay and Spend incentive: The Stay and Spend scheme will incentivise taxpayers to support domestic providers of accommodation and/or food during the off-season 1 October 2020 to 30 April 2021 through tax credits.
  • Advice for taxpayers and agents: Revenue’s COVID-19 information and advice for taxpayers and agents provides information on Revenue services and tax and customs measures in place during the COVID-19 pandemic including information on tax returns and interest suspension arrangements.