HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has received 54,800 tax relief claims from individuals for working from home using a new online portal.
The online portal was launched on 1 October and was set up to process tax relief on additional expenses for employed workers who have been told to work from home to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Employers have been able to pay employees up to £6 per week, tax-free, to cover additional costs if they have had to work from home since the new rules were introduced in April 2020.
Employees who have not received the working from home expenses payment directly from their employer can apply to receive the tax relief from HMRC.
Eligible taxpayers can claim tax relief on the tax rate that they pay, so an employee that pays the 20 per cent basic tax rate and claims tax relief on £6 per week would receive £1.20 per week in tax relief, while higher rate taxpayers would receive £2.40 per week.
Karl Khan, Interim Director General of Customer Services at HMRC, said: “We want everyone to get the money that they are entitled to, so we’ve made the online service as easy to use as we can – it takes just a few minutes to make a claim.”
The online portal will adjust individuals’ tax codes for the 2020/21 tax year once their application has been approved, with employees receiving the tax relief directly through their salary until March 2021.
HMRC has also reminded employed workers that they can claim tax relief on work-related expenses, including:
- repairing or replacing small tools needed to do their job (for example, scissors or an electric drill)
- cleaning, repairing or replacing specialist clothing (for example, a branded uniform or safety boots)
- business mileage (not commuting)
- travel and overnight expenses
- professional fees and subscriptions