Revenue set to track down VRT evaders through their insurance policy
Revenue intends to clamp down on drivers who are avoiding paying VRT on foreign-registered vehicles by identifying those insured by Irish insurance companies.
A number of Irish insurance companies will readily insure UK-registered vehicles and this has enabled many drivers evade paying their VRT, yet remain road legal. This is something that won’t happen in other countries such as the UK, where you cannot insure a foreign registered car with a UK policy.
Revenue received additional powers to tackle the evasion of vehicle registration tax (VRT) in the Finance Act 2010. Insurance companies now must provide details to Revenue, on a monthly basis, of all foreign registered vehicles for which they issue a policy of insurance in excess of 42 days. Using this information, Revenue will initiate more targeted enforcement procedures against the owners of vehicles, which should have been registered and VRT paid on entry into the State.
The information will also be used to identify vehicles that are presented for registration outside the permissible period (currently seven days within entry into the State). Where instances of delayed registration are detected, Revenue will raise an additional assessment of the tax due (including an interest surcharge of 36% per annum) for the period for which the vehicle was in the country unregistered.
Last year, Revenue investigated over 22,000 vehicles. Less than 5,000 of these were found to be non-compliant and 1,952 were seized. Prosecution for non-compliance is being prepared in 50 cases. The remainder have been registered and VRT paid.