Tuesday, 3 February 2004

Questions (149)

Richard Bruton

Question:

278 Mr. R. Bruton asked the Minister for Finance the reason he has decided to include medical check-ups in the category of items attracting full PAYE and PRSI benefit-in-kind tax; and if he will consider treating them as exempt in the same category as education courses or pension contributions made by an employer due to the fact that they each have similar significant public benefit; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3052/04]

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Written answers (Question to Minister for Finance)

The cost of providing medical check-ups which employees are required to undergo by their employer is not regarded as a taxable benefit and is not liable to PAYE or PRSI. However, routine medical check-ups, paid for but not required by the employer, are treated as giving a rise to a taxable benefit and I have no plans to change this position.

Refunds of educational course or exam fees to an employee which have been paid by the employee, or direct payments of educational course or exam fees by the employer, are not treated as giving rise to a taxable benefit in certain circumstances only, that is, where the course undertaken is relevant to the business of the employer.

Likewise, certain pension contributions paid by an employer in respect of an employee do not give rise to a taxable benefit provided the contributions are made to Revenue-approved superannuation schemes.