herald

Monday 23 October 2017

Revenue audit collects €19.19m from just 128 hospital consultants

The Revenue Commissioners have collected more than €19m in tax, penalties and interest following an audit of 128 hospital consultants.

The figures, obtained from the Department of Finance, were revealed on Thursday in response to a parliamentary question from Fianna Fail's Michael McGrath.

The audit was launched after a number of tax issues arose concerning consultants who had set up their own companies to manage funds.

It has been revealed that Revenue is looking at 331 cases, of which 128 have been concluded.

So far, €19.19m in tax, late-payment interest charges and penalties has been collected.

It was recently reported that Revenue had ended its current phase of investigations into the consultants' tax affairs.

However, in his response to Mr McGrath's question, Finance Minister Michael Noonan said investigations are continuing.

"I am advised by the Revenue Commissioners that they are engaged in an ongoing programme of compliance work in relation to medical consultants," he said. "Revenue's main focus at this time in the context of this programme is the tax issues arising from the incorporation of medical consultants' businesses."

The Irish Medical Organisation said Revenue had informed it last year that an investigation was to take place.

A spokesperson said they had been advised that members may be selected for audit. The body said each consultant has individual tax arrangements and should see their accountants to ensure they are compliant.

Mr McGrath last night described the figures as "extraordinary".

hnews@herald.ie

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