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3 Tax Refunds Teachers Are Missing Out On

Written by Administrator on April 1, 2015

Tax Refunds for Teachers

It’s mid term and don’t you know all the teachers are out having fun – maybe sunning themselves in the South of Spain or having a staycation somewhere closer to home. Well….maybe that’s what all us non-teachers think, but my sister is a teacher and in all honesty she spends most of her mid-term prepping for the coming term or even sometimes marking student’s work! Not how I would like to spend my holidays!

But, one thing they should be doing is using their few spare days to get their taxes sorted as they could be due tax refunds that they didn’t even know about – and, in fact, many of them have been missing out on. So many people assume that their payroll sorts out their taxes for them, but there are plenty of hidden little extras that you can claim – but they’re not done automatically!

So, to help put a bit of extra cash back in your pocket before the Summer hits, I’ve taken a look into the refunds teachers could be missing out on.

1. Flat Rate Expenses

This is the most common refund that teachers – and many other occupations – miss out on. The amount it’s worth varies depending on whether you are a principal, working part-time, a PE teacher, a guidance counsellor or just a usual classroom teacher. This is to recognise the additional expenses that you are likely to incur as part of your job.

For a general classroom teacher, you can claim €518 of a deduction from your taxable income – which results in a refund of either €212 (at 41% tax rate) or €103 (at 20% tax rate), depending on your annual salary. And, if you haven’t been claiming this, you can go back and claim it over the previous 4 years!

Plus, if you do additional work as a PE teacher or Guidance Counsellor for your school, you can claim an additional deduction of €126 on top of the standard rate of expenses.

It’s also worth noting that those teaching or lecturing in higher education institutions, can also claim flat rate expenses depending on their seniority or part-time status.

2. Health Expenses

You know the drill – one child comes to school with a running nose or a bit of a cough and next minute you’re chowing down cough lozenges like there’s no tomorrow. It’s a painful part of the job that you are susceptible to every little ‘dose’ that is circulating and you are bound to end up at the doctor’s at least once or twice during the year.

Well, keep those receipts – because you can claim 20% tax relief on all your allowable health expenses – and that includes GP visits and prescriptions. It may not sound like much, but if you pay €50 each time you go to the doctor, you are missing out on €10 of a refund – and after a couple of trips it definitely adds up!

3. Getting Married

Believe it or not, getting married can actually make a huge difference to your taxes as your Personal Tax Credits can be shared with your spouse to reduce the total amount of tax you pay combined. It doesn’t make a huge difference to couples on higher incomes, but for most teachers – if you are married, being jointly assessed with your spouse could result in a refund.

Use the Mid Term to Claim your Refund!

All it takes is 5 minutes to fill out an application form and then you can leave the rest up to us. Download an application form or get in touch and we’ll contact you to post out a form.

Post Written by Nerilie Watson

Nerilie WatsonI’m the Marketing Manager at Red Oak Tax Refunds and although I’m no tax expert, I LOVE getting money back from taxman. My job is to translate all the complicated and confusing ‘tax speak’ that is bandied about our office into something that is understandable for all us ‘average Joe soaps’.

Posted Under: Employment Expenses, Income Tax, Medical Expenses, Tax Refunds

24 replies to “3 Tax Refunds Teachers Are Missing Out On

  1. Andrew O'Regan

    Hi there,

    I am a secondary school teacher for the last 4 years and only heard recently that I may be able to claim for expenses. Any information as a PE and Biology teacher would be much appreciated to my e-mail. Thank you

    Reply

  2. Maria everett

    I’m a teacher in waterford college of further education and am interested in these refunds. Thank you

    Reply

    1. Nerilie Watson

      Hi
      Thanks for your message.
      Absolutely for the Flat Rate Expenses. With regards to getting married or health expenses, obviously these only apply if you have either got married or paid for medical expenses in the last 4 years.
      I hope that assists.
      Regards
      Nerilie

      Reply

  3. MAG BUCKLEY

    HI,
    IIM A NATIONAL SCHOOL TEACHER AND AM INTERESTED IN GETTING A TAX REFUND…HOW DO I GO ABOUT IT? THANKS 🙂

    Reply

  4. philip brady

    A colleague mentioned some kind of ‘stationary’ allowance for teachers which i presume is under flat rate expenses. I am a user of paye-anytime but do not see anything in their list there that I can select to claim tax credits for such expenses. How do i go about this?
    I hope I am not too late with my post and thanks for the very helpful website.

    Reply

    1. Post Author Administrator

      Hi Philip,
      From a tax perspective, the flat rate is what would cover this – From what I know it was originally brought in to support the costs of books for teachers, but may be there to cover stationary as well. You get this flat rate regardless of what you spend – so you don’t need to keep receipts for this, and if you spend more than the ‘flat rate’ you wont get a greater rate.
      John

      Reply

  5. Alan Coogan

    Can I claim a FRE if I am a special needs assistant? I hear conflicting options on some online forums?

    Reply

    1. Ray Byrne

      Hi Laura,

      Thanks for getting in touch. If you are a special needs teacher employed by the Department of Education then you should be able to claim flat rate expenses.

      All the best,
      Ray

      Reply

  6. Alan Brennan

    Hi, I am a PE teacher for the last four years and have only recently heard that I am able to claim for expenses. Any information on this would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you.

    Reply

    1. Ray Byrne

      Hi Alan,

      Thanks for getting in touch. Yes there is what is called a Flat Rate Expense that you can claim for being a teacher. This is €518 per year and you are given it at the rate of tax that you pay, so either at 20% or at 40% if you are in the higher tax bracket.

      All the best,
      Ray

      Reply

  7. Máire

    If a person has to go into Rehab for 12 weeks at a total cost of €2,400 are those costs tax deductable if u are a PAYE worker
    if u are a PAYE worker

    Reply

    1. Ray Byrne

      Hi Mary,

      Thanks for getting in touch. Would probably depend on the type of rehab, if the treatment is carried out or referred by a medical practitioner then the expenses should be claimable.

      All the best,
      Ray

      Reply

    1. Ray Byrne

      Hi Ruth,

      Thanks for getting in touch. It would depend on what your total income and total tax paid was for the year. Sometimes yes when you don’t work the full year you can overpay on your PAYE tax up to the point that you finished for the rest of the year.

      All the best,
      Ray

      Reply

  8. Damien McAuliffe

    Hello, are montessori teachers allowed claim for teacher’s flat rate expenses? Thank you

    Reply

    1. Ray Byrne

      Hi Damien,

      Thanks for getting in touch. No unfortunately not, just primary and secondary teachers and lecturers.

      All the best,
      Ray

      Reply

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