Delays in issue of PPS Numbers – a remedy

19 February 2021


Last week I left with a cliffhanger . . and a promise that I would close my two-part chapter today.

I’m afraid, I am going to have to postpone that for a little while because something more pressing has come across my desk . . .

Yes, I know what you are thinking “Is there anything more important than s. 61(3) of the Registration of Title Act”. Well, there isn’t much that could trump that, apart from . . . yes you guessed it . . . the white knuckle Tayto Park thrillfest that are . . . PPS numbers . . ! .

A lot of you may have been experiencing delays in obtaining your PPS numbers, especially for non-resident beneficiaries.

There has now been clarification issued by Revenue on this issue as follows:

Revenue clarifications on obtaining PPSNs for non-residents for Grants of Probate and tax returns following Branch Network discussion

At a recent Branch Network meeting of the Tax Institute with Business Division, the Institute raised delays experienced with the issue of PPSNs for non-resident individuals and the impact of this on applications for Grants of Probate and for timely filing of Capital Acquisitions Tax (CAT) returns for non-resident beneficiaries. They subsequently wrote to Revenue with examples of delays in the processing of PPSNs and members’ concerns about the risk of sanctions for the late filing of tax returns, where returns cannot be filed pending the issue of PPSNs. Revenue has provided them with further clarifications below.

Grants of Probate

The Department of Social Protection (DSP) have set up a new email address to deal with delayed applications for a PPSN where the PPSN is required for a Grant of Probate. DSP have advised that this email address and service is only to be used in cases that meet the following criteria:

  1. An application has already been made for a PPSN to DSP
  2. This application has been delayed and is urgent
  3. The PPSN is required for a Grant of Probate to issue

The email address is:

A copy of the original email submitted together with any documents attached must also be provided.

Tax Return Filing

If the delay does not relate to Probate, but members are experiencing delays in filing CAT returns, members are advised to notify Revenue, via MyEnquiries, of any issues affecting them filing a return on time. Additionally, if there are cases where an application for a Grant of Probate is delayed where more than one PPSN is delayed for the Form SA.2, the agent should notify the CAT team in Personal Division of same. Personal Division will help to progress their application for a Grant of Probate while they wait for the PPSNs to be provided.

Revenue has also confirmed that they will look favourably on applications for mitigation of interest and surcharge where the issue of a PPSN is delayed and it was sought in a timely manner. Therefore, Revenue would encourage agents to establish at the outset if a PPSN is required and put the PPSN application in process as early as possible. Revenue notes that in Stamp Duty cases, it can take 6-8 weeks to complete a contract – if the PPSN issue is identified by the agent/solicitor early, it may mitigate any delays.