Canva – Social Media

If you need a tool to help you with your social media content, particularly on Instagram you should try It is a graphic design tool which is free to use. It can help improve your social media content greatly and give it more of a professional look. They also have plenty of premade templates which you can use and edit. As part of a podcast we also run, Canva was the number one tool recommended among small business owners.

Self-Employed can defer payment for 12 months

Self-Employed can defer payment for 12 months

If you are self-employed you will be aware you are due to complete your annual return for 2019 which is now due by December 10th. You will be required to pay taxes due for 2019 and preliminary taxes for 2020.

Paschal Donohoe announced a range of measures to help small and medium businesses. One of which is extending debt warehousing to the self-employed. If you expect your 2020 income to be at least 25% less than 2019 then you can apply. This means you can defer your 2019 tax payment and your 2020 preliminary tax payment for 12 months. (source)

However, if there is an underpayment of preliminary tax for 2019 then this can not be warehoused. It can however avail of a 3% reduced interest phased payment arrangement. This needs to be agreed with revenue by December 10th. 

Revenue have confirmed applicants have until the 10th of December to avail of the scheme. The scheme is also open to landlords. (source)

Impact of COVID on Dublin pubs – The Lotts Cafe Bar

Dave Fitzpatrick of The Lotts Cafe Bar shares his experience of being a publican during COVID. He talks about how his business and his life has been impacted by COVID. He discusses the level of support being offered by the government and the his opinion on insurance companies.

Cookie Policy – Free Cookie Policy Template

Cookie Policy Ireland - Cookie Regulation


You are free to use the below template for you website. Please include a credit for

Cookie Policy – Free Template


Using our website

Our website (“website name”) uses cookies to improve your experience and to provide tailored information. We will ask you for your consent to use cookies on our website as required by GDPR.

What are cookies?

Cookies are text files stored on your computer so when you visit a website it can remember who you are. Using cookies allows websites to remember your preferences and behaviour which enables websites to improve your experience. 

Cookies can be set by the owner of the website or in some cases by third party services the website owner allows to present or store other information or provide other functionality such as data analytics.

How are they used on this site?

Cookies are used to improve the functionality of our website. We use cookies to improve your experience. We also use cookies to remember your preferences and to prevent you from re-submitting information already provided.

We may also use cookies set by third parties for other functionalities such as data analytics and improved targeted advertising.

Managing & Removing Cookies

Should you change your mind in the future you always have the option of removing cookies from your browser. Please the below links depending on your browser:

Credit: created by

Cookie Policy Ireland – Cookie Regulation

Cookie Policy Ireland - Cookie Regulation


From the 5th of October all websites operating in Ireland must comply with the relevant cookie policy laws and regulations in Ireland. Six months prior the Data Protection Commission (DPC) had given businesses notice of enforcement existing regulations. 

The first regulations which existed under the privacy legislation in 2011, Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations.

Later this was updated in 2018 under GDPR. GDPR clearly states that people must give their consent for websites to use cookies.  A recent survey by the DPC had found most businesses were not compliant with this law. (source)

What are cookies?

Cookies are text files stored on your computer which allow websites to do several things such as track users, remember user information and preferences and track user behaviour. Cookies can be controlled by the owner of the website or by third parties. 

For example, an owner of a website can install a facebook pixel. This allows the owner of the website to add you to an audience of people they advertise to. If you visit a website which sells garden furniture, the next time you log into facebook you could see advertisements for garden furniture for the same website.

What are the implications for my business?

This means that all visitors to your website must give their consent to you using cookies. When they arrive on your website they must actively click on “Accept” in order for you to use cookies.

If you have a wordpress website there is a simple solution. There is a free GDPR Cookies Consent plugin which you can install. This will prompt the user to accept your cookie policy when they arrive on your website.

If you don’t have a cookie policy we have written a free template you can use for your website. Please make sure you credit


Additional Information

If you would like more detailed information on the issue then you can read the guidance set out by the DPC.

Self Employed Ireland

Self-Employed Ireland : Guide to being self-employed in Ireland


Being self-employed is a very common legal structure used in Ireland to operate a business. In 2020, self-employed people accounted for 14.75% of all of those employed in Ireland. 

The registration process for being self-employed is very simple and can be done through There are a number of benefits of being self-employed, particularly if you are already an employee through the PAYE system. One of the biggest is being able to offset your self-employed losses against your employee income. It’s also very easy to stop being self employed. This can be done through 

How to register as being self employed in Ireland

You do not need to register as being self-employed if your non PAYE income is less than €5,000 and your PAYE income is less than €30,000. 

To register as being self-employed in Ireland you simply register on For this you will need a PPS number. Go to and click on “Register for ROS” and then “Apply for your RAN”. 

On the next screen select “An individual or company” and from the drop select “Income Tax”. Enter your PPS number in the “Registration Number” field. Complete the rest of the steps as indicated.

Self-Employed Ireland: Benefits

There are a number of benefits of being self-employed in Ireland:

  • Fast to set up
  • Cheaper to setup than a limited company
  • No financial risk due missing submission of returns with the CRO
  • You can expense apportion of your rent, electricity, internet and heating if working from home
  • You can expenses a portion of your motor expenses
  • You can offset your losses against your PAYE income
  • You can expense your home office
Register for tax sole trader Ireland

Allowable Expenses : Self-Employed Ireland

Here is a list (which is not exhaustive) of the expenses you can claim in Ireland if you are self-employed. We’ve tried to focus on some of the more obscure items. In general, any cost which arises as a result of engaging in business can be expensed.

  1. €500 voucher for employees. The voucher must not be redeemable for cash.
  2. Portion of rent, electricity, heat and internet from your private home if working from home
  3. Portion of motor expenses if using your personal car for business use
  4. Allowance for wear & tear of private motor vehicles use in a business. 12.5% apportioned based on the percentage of millage associated with business use.  
  5. Pre Trade expenses. 
  6. Travel, food & accommodation if this travel is outside your normal place of work.
  7. Employee entertainment which is reasonable and available to all employees

There are a few exceptions which are not so obvious.

  1. Client entertainment
  2. Clothing
  3. Your own pay

How to stop being self-employed Ireland

To stop being self-employed is relatively straight forward if you don’t have a complex business. You simply log onto, go to “Other services” and click “Manage Tax Registrations”. From here you can click on “Cease Registration” for Income Tax. 

If you have registered for VAT you’ll also need to cancel this. You will also need to complete any outstanding returns. 

If you don’t have access to you’ll need to complete a TRCN1

Sole trader Ireland

Sole Trader Ireland

Sole trader Ireland : Guide to starting as a sole trader


Being a sole trader is a popular option for a lot of entrepreneurs because it is a very easy structure to set up.  A sole trader and being self-employed are essentially the same thing. 

You are not required to produce a set of accounts although you are required to complete a self-assessment each year. 

A sole trader gives you the option to test your business idea without being overburdened with returns or high accounting fees. If your business idea is successful and starts generating revenue you can switch to a limited company at any time.

This article will cover:

  • Should I be a sole trader in Ireland?
  • When should I set up a limited company in Ireland?
  • How do I register as a sole trader in Ireland?
  • What are my filing obligations as a sole trader?
  • What taxes do I pay as a sole trader in Ireland?
  • Can I be an employee and a sole trader?
Sole Trader Ireland

Should I be a sole trader in Ireland?

Firstly, be careful when getting advice on your business structure. Some accountants will tell you to set up a limited company when it isn’t necessary. In some cases it is because accounting fees are higher for a limited than a sole trader. 

You should be a sole trader in the following circumstances:

  1. You are just starting a business and you’re testing your idea
  2. You are making a very low profit
  3. None of the profits will be reinvested in the business 
  4. There is a very low risk of the business defaulting on its debts

We’ve written an article on a limited company vs a sole trader.

When should I set up a limited company in Ireland?

You should set up your business structure as a limited company in the following circumstances:

  1. You are reinvesting profits back into the business
  2. There is a high risk the business will default on its debts
  3. You require multiple founders
  4. You will be seeking funding
  5. You are taking a significant salary from the business
Register for tax sole trader Ireland

How do I register as a sole trader in Ireland?

To register as a sole trader you need a PPS number. You can register on or you can for you can complete a form TR1.

If you want to stop being a sole trader you follow a similar process. You log into and click on “Other Services”. Click on “Manage Tax Registrations” then click on “Cease Registration” for Income tax and complete the form on the next page.

What are my filing obligations as a sole trader?

At a minimum you need to complete a self-assessment form. If you have a simple business you can complete it yourself. However, if it is too complex you will need to hire an accountant who can charge fees of €750 + VAT. 

Depending on your level of sales you may also need to register for VAT. Generally this needs to be completed every 2 months. This can be as low as every 6 months if your VAT liability is less than €3,000.

You need to register for VAT if your sales is above the following:

  • €37,500 if you are supplying services only.
  • €35,000 for distance selling into Ireland
  • €41,000 for persons making acquisitions from other European Union Member States.
  • €75,000 if you are selling goods
tax filing obligations sole trader ireland

What taxes do I pay as a sole trader in Ireland?

As a sole trader you can not expense your salary. The profit that is remaining is taxed at PAYE rates of 20% (€35,300) , 40% (above €35,300) plus PRSI & USC. You are entitled to a tax credit €1,500 for being self-employed (v employee of €1,650). The deadline for filing your self-assessment return is October 31st. 

As mentioned above, if you are registered for VAT you’ll also need to pay that every 2 months. 

Can I be an employee and a sole trader?

In Ireland you can be both an employee and a sole trader. When you complete your self-assessment you enter your income from your employment and your income or losses from your sole trader business. 

The benefit of being a sole trader and an employee is you can offset your losses from being a sole trader against your PAYE income. 

As a sole trader you can expense a percentage of your rent, heating, internet and electricity if you are working from home on your business.