VAT on Training and Coaching

 In Revenue Updates

The subject of VAT on training arises time and time again for many accountants. There have been updates from Revenue in the last number of years clarifying the position.

VAT on training or coaching services has caused much confusion. This is only a short note to heighten awareness of the issues.

In order for training services to qualify as exempt vocational training, specific conditions must be met. 

Revenue have defined vocational training as ‘instruction relating directly to a trade or profession as well as any instruction aimed at acquiring or updating knowledge for vocational purposes’ and where training relates directly to a trade or profession which enables the person attending the training to improve their ability to carry out their work or, prepare that person for future employment. The duration of the course is not considered by Revenue to be a determining factor but rather the focus on the course for the person attending it.

Where training is more directed to personal development or a recreational purpose, then the course is not deemed to qualify for the exemption and will be taxable, subject to the VAT at the Standard rate (23%).

The Revenue document for VAT Treatment of Education and Vocational Training has been reviewed again during April 2018. See link for the latest update from Revenue.  Education and Vocational Training

If the training course does not satisfy all the conditions set out by revenue, it does not qualify for exemption from VAT. Revenue clearly state that all conditions must be met. 

Check out section 6.1 for Conditions to be met.

The Revenue document gives a variety of examples that are very useful for anyone wondering about their own tax position. If you are still unsure or unclear how VAT applies to any service you provide, clarify the position in writing with your advisor.

If you have any queries, please feel free to contact me on

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