Subscriptions to professional bodies were included as a benefit-in-kind in the recent Irish budget. These fees, which are typically paid for by employers were traditionally exempt from tax and will now trigger taxes of up to 52% for individuals and PRSI of 10.5% for companies.
Since the budget announcement in December the Society of Actuaries in Ireland has tracked the progress of the issue through to the Finance Bill and then the Finance Act and has been in close contact with other professional bodies whose members may be similarly affected. They have also sought tax advice and are currently seeking to get clarity from Revenue regarding the precise scope of the new measures. They hope to be in a position to issue a further communication to members in the near future, providing clarity on the impact of the new benefit-in-kind measures.
Failing a change, the Society of Actuaries is considering remodeling its charges so that the annual fee of €850 is broken into a subscription figure and fees for seminars throughout the year. This would trigger less tax, since BIK is only payable on membership fees.