Work-Related Expenses

Millions Are Missing Out on Work-Related Expenses. Are You?

Many employees are missing out on claiming work-related expenses. Now HMRC are reminding them there’s an easy way to check if they can make a claim.

A simple way to claim

Employees in certain professions, including nursing, hairdressing and construction, are eligible to claim back some of their work-related expenses. However, many fail to do so, or pay agents to claim relief, thereby not receiving the full payment—even though they can claim themselves if they are paid by PAYE. Now, HMRC are urging these employees to go online and directly check if they can claim extra cash back.

It’s an easy process, so if you think you may have a claim, use the simple Check if You Can Claim tool. If you’re eligible, you can log in to your Personal Tax Account to claim your tax relief online (if you don’t yet have a PTA, you can set one up at which can be set up here.

You can also claim by:

  • Post by printing off this form
  • Phone if your total expenses are less than £1,000 (or £2,500 for professional fees and subscriptions). Call 0300 200 3300 (Monday to Friday: 8am to 8pm; Saturday: 8am to 4pm; Sunday: 9am to 5pm)

If your claim is approved, you should be paid within three weeks.

Angela MacDonald, director general of customer services, said:

“Tax relief isn’t available for all employment expenses which is why the online Check If You Can Claim tool is so handy – you can be reassured your claim will be approved and your full tax relief will be paid directly in to your bank account.”

“We know what a difference tax relief can make to hard working customers, which is why we’re keen to make sure they get all the relief their entitled to by using our online service.”

What workplace expenses can you claim for?

The majority of eligible claims are for repairing or replacing tools and branded uniforms, professional subscriptions and mileage. Healthcare workers, people in food and retail and those in the construction industry are among the top professions to claim from HMRC.

You may be able to claim tax relief on the cost of:

  • Repairing or replacing small tools needed to do your job, such as scissors or an electric drill
  • The cleaning, repairing or replacing of specialist clothing, such as a branded uniform or safety boots
  • Business mileage (this does not include commuting, i.e. travelling to and from the work location where you are based)
  • Travel and overnight expenses
  • Professional fees and subscriptions

However, you will need to have kept a record of expenditure and receipts, and claims must be made within four years of the end of the tax year you’re claiming for. You will be paid tax relief at the rate of pay that you pay tax. For example, if you spend £60 and pay tax at a rate of 20% in that year, the tax relief they can claim is £12.

If you’re an employee with any of the work-related expenses mentioned above, check today to see if you can claim tax relief. It only takes a few minutes and could put extra money in your pocket!

Kara Copple
An experienced business and finance writer, sometimes moonlighting as a fiction writer and blogger.