Finance Essentials Workshop Tips

Apply for your artists’ exemption.

Income you earn from the sale of your artistic works may be exempt from Income Tax. Fill out the artist exemption claim form on

You’ll have to submit some supporting material, i.e., if you’re an author, perhaps a couple of chapters from your book, if you’re a musician, your Spotify link. You’ll also have to attach proof of income. This might be an IMRO statement for royalties or a publishing contract. These can go via post to their HQ in Dublin Castle or through My Account on Revenue online through the Enquiries email service. 

Exemptions can’t be dated backwards so if you apply now, it will count for the tax year 2023 onwards. You can’t put in an application for 2022.

If you have an inkling that you could be exempt, do submit it. It’s free and you may as well find out if you are entitled. 

If you’re a musician and an actor, apply for these separately; you can only apply for one artform at a time. 

01 8589820 is the Revenue phone number re. artists’ exemption if you have any queries.


These things validate an invoice in the eyes of Revenue.

  • Name
  • Address
  • Date
  • Invoices numbered sequentially.
  • Full description of services provided.

If you’re registered for VAT include your VAT number and add VAT onto the invoice. 


Line items in a bank statement will suffice if you don’t have all receipts.

When you’re gathering your expenses, this is helpful to know so don’t panic if you don’t have a receipt; once you can see it was paid for via your bank account, you’re covered. Just link the expense to your activity i.e., toll expense to get to a gig in the Olympia on X date.


List all your equipment and how much it would cost to replace it. You can get 12.5% of that back.

Capital expenditure is your guitar or a Macbook – the more bulky items you’ve spent money on for work. On capital items you can claim 12.5% of the item every year for 8 years. 


Use an app to keep track of receipts.

Apps like Expensify enable you to take a photo of a receipt and upload it to a space where you can add a detailed description of the item and what job it’s related to. Keeping paper receipts of course works too. Get a hardback diary, staple receipts into the pages and write out what the payment was for on the pages. 


Who can claim expenses for image maintenance? 

Musicians who are getting up on stage or actors in the public eye, or if you have to maintain social media to help you portray an image. All this means you need to maintain your image so you can claim for clothes, hair, and make up. If you’re using items for a dual purpose, i.e., if you use the make-up both for social and work occasions, you can claim 50% on those items in that case. 

If you can, keep all of this separate like a separate wardrobe for work. 


You can claim for research items.

If you’re a director, DJ or writer, you can claim a portion of any expense which could be linked to gaining inspiration e.g. Spotify/Apple Music/ Netflix/ Prime. Anything that could be linked to helping you gain inspiration all falls within research. Claim 50% if the subscription has a dual use, i.e. your own entertainment. 


Can you claim services at home? Broadband, electricity… 

You can claim a portion of  your mobile phone bill, broadband bills and other household bills based on the percentage used for work.


There are lots of tax credits available. Don’t miss out on them.

If you don’t have an accountant, make sure you look through the list on Revenue Online Service (ROS).

For example, there has been a real lack of take up of the rent tax credit. If you pay rent, you can claim €500 back for 2022 and 2023. This will be €750 for 2024. You just need to give the address of your property and the amount of rent being paid. 

Medical expenses is another tax credit that everyone can claim. Any medical bills, not covered by private health insurance, can come off your tax bill. You can’t claim routine dental or fillings, but you can claim for braces or root canals. Your dentist can give you a MED 2 form for this.

What is preliminary tax?

In October 2023, we do our returns for 2022. Preliminary tax to be paid this year is the amount towards your 2023 liability – that’s either 100% of 2022 or 90% of what you estimate 2023 to be. We recommend paying 100% of 2022 to be safe. That will sit on the account and will come off your liability when you do your return for next year.  It’s a prepayment. You’re liable to pay interest if it’s underpaid. 


If you’re paying VAT, hire an accountant. 

There were some changes to VAT in Budget 2024. The VAT registration threshold is an income threshold and not profit. There’s a massive VAT rate database on Revenue which is brilliant and comprehensive. VAT is a very tricky piece of legislation, there’s a whole book on it so do get professional advice if paying VAT.


Contact revenue to help you.

Revenue phone lines only open between 9.30am and 1.30pm so they are very hard to get so we recommend doing everything through My Enquiries on Revenue under your My Account there. The team are very helpful here. Do speak to them if you’re unsure about something.


For details on Budget 2024: