Budget 2017 – What you need to know? Yesterday, the minister for finance, Michael Noonan delivered the Budget for 2017. We welcome confirmation of the increase in the Group A Threshold for Capital Acquisition Tax from €28,000 to €310,000 and that the Groups B & C have also been raised to €32,500 and €16,250 respectively. There was no specific mention to Exit Tax, so we need to wait for the Finance Bill to see if the DIRT reduction is to be applied equally to Exit Tax on Life Assurance Policies and Investment Funds. Unfortunately there was no removal of the 1% Insurance Levy. Pension Changes The main announcement for Pensions related to Social Welfare Pensions; Social Welfare Pensions The Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe announced a €5 per week increase in all social welfare pension payments. This means that the weekly rate of State Pension (Contributory) will increase from €233.30 per week to €238.30 per week from March 2017. Pension No Changes All other aspects of pensions surrounding employer / employee contributions remain constant, with income caps and levels of corporation tax remaining unchanged for 2017. Life & Taxation – Changes There was no impact to standard income rate bands. The €550 per annum tax credit introduced in 2016 for the self employed has been increased to €950 for 2017.