Irish Tax and USC 2018

It’s that time again, the dreaded 2018 Irish Budget has been announced. No need to fear though, it’s not all doom and gloom!

If you are thinking about first time contracting or have been doing it for years, 2018 is looking up for you. The Irish economy has changed vastly since the early 2000’s and people are more open to the idea of being contractors or self-employed.

The 2018 Irish budget has brought contractors and self-employed individuals closer in line with their PAYE counterparts.

With the incentive of an extra €200 in your back pocket, why not start thinking about how you’re going to spend yours…

Have a look at the new Irish 2018 Budget breakdown to see how it will benefit you:

Tax and USC

Income tax


  • The self-employed and contractors will pay €200 less a year in tax from 2018, following the Government’s decision to extend the earned-income tax credit from €950 to €1,150.


  • The standard rate income tax band for all earners is increasing by €750.
  • €33,800 to €34,550 for single individual
  • €42,800 to €43,550 for married one earner couples.

Universal Social Charge (USC)

The 2.5% rate of USC has been reduced to 2% and the ceiling for this rate has increased. The 5% rate of USC has also been reduced to 4.75%. Incomes of €13,000 or less will continue to be exempt from USC in 2018. Once your income is over this limit, you will pay the relevant rate of USC on all of your income as follows:

  • €0 to €12,012               @            5%
  • €12,012 to €19,372     @            2%
  • €19,372 to €70,044    @            75%
  • €70,044+                     @            8%

Minimum wage increased by 3.24% to €9.55 for experienced adult workers.


Wish to learn more?

If you have any questions or queries regarding your 2017 / 2018 payroll or any other matters regarding working or employing in Ireland please contact:   Rebecca  +353 (0)1 4773740 or  Adele       + 353 (0)147 73736

Or visit our website and perhaps in specific our Ireland pages

Ireland: Is Contracting for me?

Since the recession, the Irish economy has gone from strength to strength, especially in industries such as; Accountancy, Finance & Banking, IT, Construction and Pharmacy.

Ireland has become a sought after location for companies who want to relocate their business or begin a start-up.

Most individuals are used to working as a PAYE employee for an employer, meaning they don’t have to worry or be responsible for paying their governmental taxes and charges to the Irish Revenue, as it is done at source by their employer, but what about becoming a contractor? Some individuals are hesitant of the idea of becoming a contractor because the thought of managing payroll, as well as completing and filing their own income tax return seems complicated, a lot of responsibility and possibly a hard process.
Well do not fear…. you do not have to do this alone!

Should you decide to become a contractor in Ireland, there are companies you can engage with who will do all of these payroll and tax payments for you, allowing you to just enjoy the perks of being a contractor.
So, let’s take the payroll and revenue responsibilities out of the equation for a minute and explore these perks.
Many organisations in Ireland are looking to hire contractors. This is because they have a need for a project to be completed, which requires a certain skill set and talent.

Companies do not want to permanently employ individuals for a project, and so they look for contractors to fulfil their need for this ‘Contract for Service’.

Irland:  Services
Wij regelen alles zo soepel en onzichtbaar mogelijk voor u, of u nu een opdrachtnemer, bureau of werkgever bent.

Hoe werkt het

Take a look at your skill set, your current employment status, your work/life balance and your finances; you need to really understand what a contractor does, its perks and how it can add value to your life. If the shoe fits!
The beauty about being a contractor is that you can be selective with your contract choices; leaving you available to move around organisations or even countries, gaining different experiences, learning new skills and building your network. Once you have finished your contract you can choose to either move onto the next new project, take some time to balance your work / life, take a holiday or go on that adventure you always wanted to go on.

So next time you’re considering a new career move, speak to a recruiter or do research online, and keep an open mind to the contracting world. It may be the best decision you will ever make!!!

Wish to learn more?

If you are interested in working as a contractor or employing in Ireland please call Rebecca Cox from our Irish team on +353 (0)85 839 0299 or Adele from our Irish team on +353 (0)85 286 8699 or send us a message through our contact page. If you have enjoyed reading this blog, you can view our selection of blogs on similar payroll & contracting topics here.

Will Ireland fill the possible Brexit vacuum?

Dublin at night down by the Liffey River

Although the exit of the United Kingdom from the EU will take a couple of years still, there’s already a lot of tension and uncertainty about doing business with the British. Meanwhile, financial institutions, in particular, are looking around. Ireland is receiving them with open arms. Why is that? How does TCP Solutions respond to that for our clients?

According to research by KPMG, many large foreign financial institutions are looking at Ireland. Particularly, because Ireland is said to have the most competitive tax system. In second and third place are Luxembourg and the Netherlands respectively. JP Morgan and Bank of America already announced they are seriously considering Dublin.

The online magazine Emerce also reports that Dublin is chosen more often lately as the location for the European headquarters of multinationals. Amazon and LinkedIn are already based there. According to KPMG, there are also a lot of start-ups that enter the European market through Ireland.


Ireland got into serious trouble during the economic crisis. The EU provided Ireland with a rescue package of 85 billion euros. Therefore, Ireland suddenly getting so much attention, comes as somewhat of a surprise. Showing from their records, for the Irish central bank as well. At the board meeting of 30 January ‘17, vice president Cyril Roux says that the interest is higher than expected initially. The Dutch evening newspaper NRC reported that around hundred banks have already requested information about moving to Ireland. They also wrote this beautiful review article, which presents a (cautiously) positive picture for the Irish.

TCP in Ireland

TCP Solutions is at the forefront of this development. In May 2017, we are opened a new, larger office in Ireland. Based in the heart of the capital; Harcourt Road, Dublin. We are very much looking forward to extending the growth of TCP Solutions to the Irish market. We follow our clients and settle where our clients run their international business.

Are you doing business with Ireland? TCP is happy to help you! Check out our services in Ireland.

Do you wish to learn more? Please call Rebecca Cox or Adele Ryan of our Irish team on +353 (0)1477 3740 or contact us via the form below or otherwise contact any of our local teams via Contacts.

What is a knowledge migrant in The Netherlands?


Real top talents are not only found within the borders of the Netherlands. Specialist knowledge or skills are increasingly acquired from abroad. Knowledge migrants, for example. How does that work exactly? How do you arrange that, and what should you pay attention to?

A knowledge migrant is someone from outside the EU who comes to the Netherlands to work based on their specialist knowledge. The Netherlands has a special arrangement for knowledge migrants. It makes it easier for companies to hire highly skilled people from outside the EU. This is subject to certain conditions, however.

It’s increasingly popular in the Netherlands to bring bright minds from Asia and North America here, for example, to work as an IT specialist or financial expert. Nearly half of the knowledge migrants in the Netherlands are from Asia, and more than one-tenth is from North America. 75% of the knowledge workers are male and highly skilled migrants are relatively young. (Source: There are many benefits for the knowledge migrant too in the Netherlands. Among other things, they may qualify for a tax benefit up to a maximum €7,750. Often, knowledge migrants also qualify for the attractive 30% arrangement. There are some conditions for hiring a knowledge migrant though.


First, the knowledge migrant needs to have a residence permit. To qualify for this, you must comply with the general conditions applicable to all migrants plus some extra conditions.

The most important condition is that the employer is recognised by the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND). You can apply online for that (fees apply).

Another condition is that the knowledge migrant is paid a market-rate salary. What qualifies as market-rate, is redetermined every year. In 2017, this is:

  • €4,324 per month for knowledge migrants aged 30 or older.
  • €3,170 per month for knowledge migrants younger than 30.
  • €2,272 gross per month for knowledge migrants younger than 30 who finished their studies in the Netherlands.

Note: These amounts are gross amounts excluding 8% holiday allowance.


As an employer, you must apply for the residence permit to the IND. Fees apply to this as well, and it can take a long time. After receipt of the application, the IND has 90 days to decide. After the decision, it can take up to 2 weeks before the permit is ready. TCP Solutions checks whether someone qualifies for the knowledge migrant visa and, as a recognised referent, we can apply for it at the IND through an accelerated procedure.

If all of that has been completed, the employer is done, but the knowledge migrant isn’t. He or she must register with the municipality, take out health insurance and possibly undergo a TB test.

30% arrangement

To address the extra costs knowledge migrants incur to work in the Netherlands, the 30% arrangement was created. The employer can provide a free (untaxed) compensation for the extraterritorial costs that are incurred. Instead of compensating the actual extraterritorial costs, the employer can also compensate these costs by paying 30% of the salary, including the compensation, tax-free. This arrangement is known as the 30% arrangement. It’s not required to prove these costs.

Specially for graduates

The Netherlands considers it important that highly skilled persons are allowed the time to find a job as knowledge migrant after their studies or to start their own company in the Netherlands.

Thanks to this arrangement, highly skilled persons can apply for a residence permit in the Netherlands up to 3 years after receiving their diploma or completing their scientific research. The residence permit for the so-called “search year for highly skilled persons” contains the labour market annotation “work freely permitted, work permit not required”. This means that the highly skilled person is free to work in the Netherlands during the search year.

This is ideal for employers looking for new international talent. These fresh graduates already know the Netherlands a little through their studies, and with this arrangement, they’re easy to hire.

TCP Solutions makes it easy

As a specialist in flexible labour, TCP Solutions makes it very easy for you to have highly skilled personnel from all countries work for you. TCP has been a recognised referent of the IND for years and has lots of experience with applications for knowledge migrants.

The knowledge migrant you’re interested in will be employed by us and will immediately start working for you based on an employee loan agreement. We take care of the salary and all administration based on a clear employment contract. We also take care of the visa application. This way, you can get started with top talent from abroad without any worries. We take care of the rest.

Wish to learn more?

Do you wish to learn more? Please contact our team via the form below or call us on +44 (0) 208 5 800 800 or contact any of our local teams via Contacts.

Top 4 benefits of outsourcing your Payroll


Payrolling has various benefits. It provides significant savings in both time and money. Are you unsure whether payrolling is something for you? We have listed the biggest benefits here.


Having personnel in employment unfortunately also comes with administrative red tape. By outsourcing this to a payrolling company, you can hand over the red tape, so HR can focus fully on recruitment & selection of personnel and daily monitoring thereof. HR will have time to implement HR policy, instead of being occupied with personnel administration.

Payrolling also means automation and efficiency, without investing in software and hardware.

Cost reduction

Advancing salaries, with all additional employee costs, takes a big bite out of the budget. Money you would rather invest in something else. These costs increase significantly when more people are hired. You will have to deal with more administration, more rules concerning sickness, holiday allowances and premiums. You may have to purchase software and the know-how to operate it. In short, the costs run high rapidly.

TCP Solutions has the liquid assets to advance these costs. We will fulfil the position of employer, so all administration is also for our account. You will not have to purchase software, which also makes a big difference. We love to work with agencies to offer completer solutions to your client.


Payroll administration is a precise job. If something goes wrong there, it’s sure to cause a lot of fuss. It’s not something you do every day either, so a mistake is easily made.

Payrolling companies are aware of the rapid changes in laws and regulations. TCP Solutions identifies and implements these changes and thus ensures 100% compliance. We do this daily, and we specialise in this in no less than 12 different European countries. Each country has its own rules, laws and fines. We guarantee that you will not experience any unexpected difficulties.

Always paid in time

Nobody likes to wait for their money very long. Sometimes, due to circumstances, it may happen that salaries haven’t been paid yet. This causes a lot of unrest and discontent among employees. With a payrolling service, you can be sure that your employees’ salaries are always paid timely.
With TCP Solutions, prefinancing even comes standard with our payrolling service. We guarantee that our contractors receive their wages within five workdays after submitting an approved work slip. We consider this to be self-evident. Simply being a good employer.

Payrolling via TCP Solutions

TCP Solutions arranges payrolling for agencies and companies and invoicing concerning self-employed persons. Not just that, however. We ensure that both the client and the contractor comply fully with all laws and regulations. Whether in the Netherlands, Germany or any of the other countries where we have an entity as well as abroad. This provides security: no unexpected fines and the certainty that you’ll get paid optimal wages.

Are you considering payrolling? Please call us on +44 (0) 208 5 800 800 or contact any of our local teams via Contacts or use the Get in Touch form below.

Stay ahead of the competition! Attract knowledge migrants.

In a few years, there will be a worldwide shortage in qualified personnel. Due to demographic developments, the largest part of this shortage will be in Europe. Germany, the United Kingdom and Belgium are already experiencing a shortage in healthcare, science and technical professions. It will be a challenge to find enough skilled workers, particularly in the technical and innovative areas.

This cannot be remedied just by investing in education, reducing premature school leaving or stimulating fulltime work by women. Europe will have to attract knowledge migrants from abroad to address the competition from the US, China and other economic superpowers. However, Europe no longer ranks among the top for knowledge migrants. Australia, Canada and the US are more popular. This worldwide competition for the best brains in the world threatens to become a significant problem for us Europeans.

Healthcare worker
How does your company handle these developments on the European labour market, how are you preparing for the future shortage in qualified personnel? A possible solution: finding and hiring knowledge migrants. If you want to hire knowledge migrants, however, there are many things to consider. Besides finding qualified personnel, you must also find your way through all laws and regulations regarding the hiring of foreign employees. This can be very complex, since those rules differ for each country.

TCP Solutions can play an important role in this. TCP Solutions is a leading payroll and compliance specialist with 20 years of experience, offering payroll solutions in 12 European countries. TCP Solutions has all the expertise concerning liability and requirements with respect to the hiring of knowledge migrants. We ensure that everything is done with full observance of the laws of each country. Corporate law, personal taxes, work permits, liability and even billing. With a 100% compliance guarantee.

Do you wish to learn more? Please contact our team via the form below or call us on +44 (0) 208 5 800 800 or any of our local teams via Contacts.

Customer Testimonial – Robert Walters

business people in a meeting

Robert Walters is a large, international recruitment agency, specialised in the finance, legal, tax and treasury sector. As a broker, they find matching candidates for interim or permanent positions for their clients. TCP Solutions works with Robert Walters for several of their clients. Pieter van Schaik, specialised in the brokering of interim professionals within Banking & Financial Services at Robert Walters, talks about this cooperation.

According to Pieter, there has been a strong increase over the past ten years in the demand for interim candidates. “We notice this in our work too. It has various causes, but it’s particularly because of the flexibilisation of the labour market, the increased number of projects and a new generation of employees who don’t want to work for the same employer for ten years anymore. People have a greater need for flexibility, more freedom.”

Deluge of rules

“What I’m seeing as well, especially the past few years, is the deluge of new laws and regulations in the financial sector, especially for banks and insurers. Implementing these new rules is often an enormous task. Think about the requirements stemming from Basel III, which sets standards for the capital reserves that banks are required to maintain themselves. MiFID II too has a significant impact. These are new rules, requiring banks to establish risk profiles for all their investment products, among other things. Complying with all these rules is asking a lot of the bank, both in terms of manpower as well as substantive specialist knowledge.”

Such difficult tasks require the right candidates with the right knowledge. “If we can’t find those in the Netherlands, we ask our international colleagues at Robert Walters”, Pieter says. “It’s about the best candidate and commonly a perfect match. Any less is not accepted. If it’s someone from abroad, so be it.”

Proactive and thoughtful

TCP Solutions operates as a broker for certain clients of Robert Walters. This can be on an interim/self-employed basis or through payrolling. Clients, particularly financial institutions, increasingly choose to let a broker or Multi-Service Provider (MSP) handle the entire financial, administrative and communicative aspect of hiring interim candidates. “TCP Solutions is by far the most proactive, thoughtful broker that I’ve worked with so far”, Pieter says. “The people at TCP are very knowledgeable and have a practical attitude. They understand the laws and regulations I’m facing, such as the new Assessment of Employment Relationships (Deregulation) Act (Wet DBA). They think along with me about useful, quick solutions. This way, I can do my work more efficiently and faster, and I can provide a better service to my client.”

“I also hear that the candidates employed at the end client through TCP find the cooperation a pleasant experience. Particularly the personal contact is highly appreciated. TCP takes time and really pays attention to you.”

Pieter van Schaik is Recruitment Specialist in Interim Finance Professionals Mid, Senior & Executive Level at Robert Walters Amsterdam.

Do you wish to find out more? Please contact our team via the form below or call us on +44 (0) 208 5 800 800 or any of our local teams via Contacts.

Working in Belgium, what do you need to know?

Are you a recruiting agency working on the Belgian market?  TCP is not a recruiting agency, we facilitate for you the employment in Belgium, you provide the candidate.

Hoe werkt het

Belgium, Europe’s political centre. An appealing location for many entrepreneurs and companies. The country has a rich history and a remarkable culture. However, lots needs to be arranged for those who want to work in Belgium. What are the most important things you need to know? We have listed them.

Belgian work permit

Are you a citizen of one of the countries of the European Union, Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein or Switzerland? Then a work permit is not needed.

All others must first acquire a valid work permit to be able to work in Belgium. The Belgian employer must apply for a type B work permit. Based on the work permit, you can also apply for a visa.

The following is required to apply for a work permit:

  • A completed form “application for employment of a foreign employee”;
  • A medical certificate;
  • A valid contract with your employer;
  • A copy of your passport, valid for at least one year still.

TCP Solutions has lots of experience in existing with work permits in Belgium. Read more about this service here.

Taxes in Belgium

In Belgium, tax brackets change relatively often. On a global level, taxes are relatively high in Belgium. The employer deducts the tax from the salary and pays this to the government. This money considered an advance. Each year, every employee must complete a tax declaration. The government then checks whether there’s a difference in the final amount to be paid and the amount received in advance.

Tax Bracket – Income Bracket (figures from 2015-2016) – Tax Percentage

  • Bracket 1 – €0 to €8,710 – 25%
  • Bracket 2 – €8,710.01 to €12,400 – 30%
  • Bracket 3 – €12,400.01 to €20,660 – 40%
  • Bracket 4 – €20,660.01 to €37,870 – 45%
  • Bracket 5 – More than €37,870 – 50%

Health insurance in Belgium

Health insurance is required by law in Belgium. Without insurance, you’re not permitted to work. Different types of insurance are offered. The costs of insurance are fairly low, because part is paid from premiums from your salary. These, on the other hand, are usually high. It’s advisable also to take out a separate hospitalisation insurance. This covers the costs for hospital treatments or admissions.

Living in Belgium

It’s said that the way of life in Belgium is generally calmer. At the same time, living in Belgium is expensive compared to other countries. Housing prices vary greatly depending on the location. A major benefit is that the country is rather small. This means it’s possible to live in a village and work in a city.

Each Belgian region has different rules concerning housing. This means that things such as required items may differ. For example, a smoke detector in the house is required only in Flanders.

Culture and language in Belgium

The official languages of Belgium are Dutch, French and German. To say something generic about the Belgians is very difficult. Large differences exist between the regions Flanders, Wallonia and Brussels. Flanders is the predominantly Dutch part of the country. The Flemish are known as a little more serious, quieter and calmer. Wallonia is the predominantly French part of Belgium, where people are more relaxed. Good food and drink are seen as important. Whenever the opportunity arises, optimum use is made of it. A sumptuous meal accompanied by one of the many famous Belgian beers.

The bilingual nature of the country is reflected in many things and causes friction between the areas. Originally, the official language of the country was French. The Flemish population increased, however, and over the course of the 20th century, Flemish increasingly got a foot in the door, with the government of the country as well. The law contains a literal language border, splitting the country in two. Road signs are required to be in Dutch in Flanders, in French in Wallonia and bilingual in Brussels. The people in Flanders mainly stay to live and work there. The same applies to the people in Wallonia.

Self-employed in Belgium

Are you self-employed, and are you coming to Belgium for an assignment? Or are you an employer, and are you giving an assignment to a freelancer in Belgium? In these two cases, you are required to report this by completing the so-called Limosa.

With Limosa, the Belgian government aims to get more control over the correct employment of foreign workers in Belgium. Registration is fairly easy and doesn’t take much time. If you don’t register with Limosa, you risk a fine of up to €24,000.

If you do live in Belgium and wish to start as a self-employed person, you must first be able to demonstrate that you have a good understanding of the basics of business management. A diploma or other certificate is usually sufficient. The enterprise office where you apply for your company number decides whether you qualify.

If you want to be completely certain that everything is taken care of, without running the risk of fines, TCP can assist you in this and completely take care of it for you – for freelancers as well as companies working with freelancers. Another good option is to work with a payroll construction. TCP Solutions often works like that when deploying flexible workers in Belgium. Read more about our services in Belgium here.

Certainty with TCP Solutions

With all the above differences in mind, figuring out all the rules regarding work in Belgium can be a considerable task.

TCP Solutions has solutions for that. Are you a freelancer, an agency operating on the Belgian market, an employee or an employer? Then TCP Solutions can help you. With payrolling, contract management and our legal service, for example, we ensure your compliance with all specific national and regional laws and regulations. This is very important, because many people working abroad aren’t aware of the fact that their employment affairs are poorly arranged. This is almost impossible, because of the many different rules to comply with. However: if you don’t comply, both you and your employer can get a hefty fine. TCP Solutions fully knows the way in 12 countries and ensures you comply with all rules. We even guarantee that we will pay the fine should something not be in order. This way, we relieve you of a major concern.

Whether you’re self-employed or just want to work for a company, TCP Solutions can help you. Not only in Belgium, but in all other countries as well. We are an international HR specialist.

Do you wish to learn more? Please contact our team via the form below or call us on +44 (0) 208 5 800 800 or any of our local teams via Contacts.

Payroll including prefinancing


Nobody likes to wait for their money long. TCP Solutions offers a clear solution for that. Prefinancing comes standard with our payroll service. This ensures you will get paid within five days. How does it work exactly?

Every company applies their own payment period. Some 14 days, others 30. Some even 60 days. For a contractor, there’s no pleasure in having to wait for payment that long. Therefore, TCP Solutions advances the wages of our contractors. We guarantee that our contractors receive their wages within five workdays after submitting an approved work slip. We consider this to be self-evident. Simply being a good employer. The service comes standard with all our payroll services, both national and international.
TCP Solutions arranges payrolling for all sorts of organisations. Not just that, however. We ensure that both the client and the contractor comply fully with all laws and regulations. Both in the Netherlands as well as abroad. This provides security: no unexpected penalties and the certainty that you’ll get paid optimal wages, within five days. Are you considering payrolling? Please contact us. Call us on 020 6757 162 or send us a message through our contact page.
TCP Solutions loves to work with agencies
If, as an agency, you’re temporarily paying your candidates’ wages, they don’t want to wait very long either of course. You can pay your candidates timely, without having to raise cash. You can focus on finding the best talents for your clients, and we’ll take care of payroll administration and payments for you. Together we are stronger! Do you wish to learn more? Please contact us on +31 (0) 206 757 162.
TCP Solutions does not offer recruiting services itself, so there are no conflicts of interest.
Self-employed people profit too
As a self-employed person, you too can profit from our prefinancing service. You can use our payroll services for your current and new clients. You will keep searching for assignments independently, but you get all the benefits of payrolling. TCP Solutions advances your client’s payment, so you can immediately dispose of the money. No long waiting periods and calls to administrative departments about hours worked and invoices. We take care of all administration for you. Wish to know more about payrolling for self-employed people? Contact our team via the form below or call us on +44 (0) 208 5 800 800.

What is an Umbrella Company?


There seems to be some confusion about what an Umbrella Company exactly stands for in the UK and why they are needed. We will try and clear things up for you including the myths surrounding Umbrella Companies and connected UK tax legislations like the notorious IR35.

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