We must make it easier for people with coeliac disease to claim the tax relief on gluten free products to which they are entitled, a Fine Gael TD has said.
Fine Gael Louth TD Fergus O’Dowd has raised the matter with both the Minister for Finance and with Revenue which oversees the granting of tax relief in a range of areas.
Deputy O’Dowd said, “People with coeliac disease are entitled to tax relief where they can prove that they have incurred costs in respect of qualifying health expenses.
“This includes an entitlement to tax relief in respect of the cost of foods that have been specifically manufactured to be gluten free, which as many people will know, can be quite expensive.
“Revenue may ask the taxpayer to provide additional supporting documentation to prove his or her entitlement to the tax relief claimed and without the proper documentation, claims can be disallowed.
“This is not easily done however, as most retailers do not specify on their receipts where a food product is gluten free.
“Some of the larger multiples provide a service for people with coeliac disease to receive an annual statement showing details of any expenditure they incurred on specific gluten free products during the year. This statement can be used to validate a claim for tax relief to Revenue. This is very helpful however it is not possible for all retailers to provide such a service. It would be welcome if the larger multiples would consider highlighting gluten free products on their receipts.
“I have tasked Revenue to examine ways to make this process easier for people who are entitled to claim this tax relief and I am pleased to say they have committed to reviewing their operational practises with a view to making the process for claiming tax relief as simple as possible.
“I look forward to working with Revenue on this to ensure all those who are entitled to tax relief are in a position to claim it.”