If your household, business or institution possesses a television or equipment capable of receiving a television signal, you are required by law to have a television licence. Even if the television or other equipment is broken and currently unable to receive a signal, it is regarded as capable of being repaired so it can receive a signal and you must hold a licence for it. Failure to produce evidence of a television licence to an inspector can result in a court appearance and on conviction, you can receive a substantial fine. People who have been fined and who have breached court orders directing them to pay their television licence can be imprisoned.
A television licence is issued for one year after which it must be renewed again.
If you are aged over 70, you can receive a television licence free of charge
If you are aged over 66 and are receiving a State pension and nobody in your household is employed or receiving Jobseeker's Benefit or Jobseeker's Allowance , you may be entitled to a free television licence.
If I have two television sets in my home do I need licences for them both?
If the equipment capable of receiving a television signal (for example a television set or a personal computer) is held in a household (an apartment, flat or a house), then one television licence will cover multiple pieces of equipment. In other words, if you have a television set in your living room and kitchen, one television licence covers both sets.
However, if the building in which the equipment is kept is sub-divided into flats or apartments or other separate living quarters, then a separate television licence must be held for each of these quarters. In other words, an individual licence must be held for each separate flat, apartment or other dwelling.
If you are a tenant living in rented accommodation with a television you must have a television licence. This applies irrespective of who owns the television (whether the television belongs to you or the landlord). The law states that anyone resident on a premises in possession of a television set must have a television licence.
Moving to a new home
If you are moving house, it is possible and highly advisable to have your television licence transferred to your new address. Simply bring your existing licence to your nearest Post Office, together with evidence of your new address (that is a household utility bill or a bank statement). Staff in your Post Office will then amend the details on your record and your licence will be updated and re-issued to you. This service is free.
Television licences for holiday homes/second homes
If your holiday home/second home contains a television, or equipment capable of receiving a television signal (using an aerial, satellite dish, cable or other means), then this household must also have a television licence. This is the case even if this is not your main residence and you already hold a licence for your main address. Failure to have a television licence where this is required can result in penalties.
Moving to Ireland from another jurisdiction
It is not possible to transfer a television licence from another jurisdiction to Ireland. Television licences for Ireland can only be purchased here and are only valid here. This means that if you transfer residence from Northern Ireland or another country (either in the EU or outside the EU) you must still purchase a television licence here.
Even if you will be remaining in Ireland for a short time, you are required to have a television licence. Each licence is issued for a 1 year period; this means that if you will be staying in Ireland for less than 1 year, you must still obtain a full television licence. You cannot obtain a refund on the licence fee if you will be leaving Ireland before the licence expires.
Conviction for non-payment of a television licence (first offence) is a fine of 634 euro.
If you are convicted a second time for not paying your television licence, you will be fined 1,269 euro and your television and signal equipment will be confiscated.
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