Renua proposes tax cuts for the self-employed

Cost of extending tax credit €290m and removing top USC rate €62m – Creighton

The rate of universal social charge (USC) paid by the self-employed would be brought into line with PAYE workers under proposals from Renua.

The party also says it will ensure self-employed workers are given the same tax credit as those in the PAYE system.

The measures are contained in a new policy document – A Better Deal for the Self-Employed – launched by party leader Lucinda Creighton, TDs Billy Timmins and Terence Flanagan and Senator Paul Bradford.

Currently, incomes of €12,012 are exempt from USC, with 3.5 per cent levied between €12,012 and €17,576. Between €17,576 and €70,044, USC is paid at 7 per cent. On all PAYE incomes above €70,044, it is charged at 8 per cent.


However, self-employed people pay 11 per cent on the portion of their income above €100,000. Ms Creighton said the cost of extending the tax credit would be €290 million and removing the higher rate of USC would be €62 million.

SME role undervalued

The Renua policy document says “domestic wealth creators – particularly in the small and medium enterprise sector – are not valued by the Irish State and its governing apparatus . . . Our economy is reliant on foreign direct investment as its sole source of growth, while the high street is struggling to survive.”

It says the self-employed get no personal tax allowance, no PRSI benefits and “no social safety net”.

Renua will also reduce the rate of capital gains tax from 33 per cent to 20 per cent where it is paid on the sale of a business or part of a business, and a “roll-over relief” for capital gains tax where the funds are “strategically” invested into new businesses. A higher rate of capital gains tax would be retained for “property speculation to incentivise investment in business over property”.