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Stamp Duty
 
What is Stamp Duty?

Stamp duty is a tax on instruments.

The stamp duties chargeable in Ireland fall into two main categories.

1. The first comprises the duties payable on a wide range of legal and commercial documents, including (but not limited to) conveyances of property, leases of property, share transfer forms and certain agreements. The duties in this category are denoted by means of stamps affixed to or impressed on the document affected and, depending on the nature of the document, may be either ad valorem or of fixed amount.

2. The second category comprises duties and levies payable by reference to statements. These duties and levies mainly affect banks and insurance companies and include a duty in respect of financial cards (e.g. Credit, ATM, Laser and Charge cards) and levies on certain insurance premiums and certain statements of interest.
The SDCA also sets out how stamp duty is to be collected and denoted and the person liable to pay the duty. The most important thing about stamp duty is that unless the instrument fits into one of the heads of charge set out in Schedule 1, then it is not liable to duty.

Rates of Duty

Rates for Residential Property – on or after 8th December 2010

A new lower rate of 1% will apply to instruments where the consideration attributable to residential property does not exceed €1,000,000. A higher rate of 2% will apply to the excess of the consideration over €1,000,000.

Aggregate Consideration

Rate of Duty
First €1,000,000 1%
Excess over €1,000,000 2%

Non-Residential Property

Non-Residential Property is any property other than residential property, stocks or marketable securities or policies of insurance. It includes (but is not limited to) sites, offices, factories, other business premises, shops, public houses, land and goodwill attaching to a business.

For instruments executed on or after 7th December 2011: 2%


Conveyances/Transfers of Stocks/Marketable Securities

Duty is 1% of the consideration paid for shares/marketable securities. Where a computation of the 1% duty falls under €1, a minimum duty of €1 is payable in respect of instruments executed on or after 6 February 2003.

Relief and Exemptions abolished

The following reliefs and exemptions have been abolished in the 2011 Budget:

  • Section 83A of the Stamp Duties Consolidation Act 1999 – this exemption applied where a site was transferred by a parent to a child for the purpose of building a house for occupation by the child.
  • Section 91A of the Stamp Duties Consolidation Act 1999 – this exemption applied to the purchase by an owner-occupier of a new house or apartment where the floor area did not exceed 125 square metres.
  • Section 92 of the Stamp Duties Consolidation Act 1999 – this relief applied to the purchase by an owner-occupier of a new house or apartment where the floor area exceeded 125 square metres.
  • Section 92B of the Stamp Duties Consolidation Act 1999 – this exemption applied to a first time purchaser who acquired a house or apartment for owner-occupancy.
  • Consanguinity Relief provided for under Schedule 1 of the Stamp Duties Consolidation Act 1999 – this relief will no longer apply to residential property but will continue to apply to non-residential property.

Transfer of property between spouses is exempt. The exemption also applies to property transferred between divorced couples on foot of certain orders made by the Irish Courts. The following types of transfers are also exempted:

  • Company reconstructions and amalgamations
  • Certain financial instruments
  • Commercial woodlands – duty not chargeable on the value of the trees growing on the land