Making the most of the small gift exemption

The small-gift exemption allows anyone to gift up to €3,000 in any tax year to anyone else

Tue, Jun 24, 2014, 01:06

On the more substantive point, Computershare and Vodafone have explained to me at length the system put in place to manage the return of value to Vodafone shareholders and why it had to be as complex as it was.

But they have never properly explained why, given that they knew they had a huge cohort of very small, generally unsophisticated Irish shareholders, they insisted on routing everything through Bristol when Vodafone’s Irish shareholders are more used to dealing with its Dublin office.

I understand the cost of replicating the logistics and security on two sites would be onerous but, in the context of the overall cost of an already complicated shareholder transactions across many geographies, how onerous? I would argue that the reputational damage to both Vodafone and Computershare from the experience of shareholders in this exercise carries its own cost for both.

The two groups have also never explained, at least to my satisfaction, why there was an initial confusion over the deadline for return of forms, why the original Computershare deadline was extended in a way that, to my mind at least, made it impossible for late applying Irish shareholders to successfully complete the process, and why some people who posted their forms in time managed to miss the deadline.

It is fair to say that they explained in detail how the actual logging of mail worked and that they committed to investigate individual cases where egregious delays would appear to have been involved. However, from letters I still receive from shareholders like yourself, it is clear that many remain dissatisfied.

For all that, I see little prospect of your achieving a satisfactory outcome. The only remaining path is legal and that carries prohibitive costs. There was some talk (on the internet) about that but I assume it has come to naught

Send your queries to Dominic Coyle, Q&A, The Irish Times, 24-28 Tara St, D2, or email dcoyle@irishtimes.com. This column is a reader service and is not intended to replace professional advice.

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