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Get paperwork in order if claiming e-working relief



Stock image. Photo: Stock image

Stock image. Photo: Stock image

Stock image. Photo: Stock image

Remote workers are entitled to tax relief on some of the expenses they incur when working from home.

Is it hard to claim for remote work?

One way to get this tax relief is for the worker to claim it themselves. You can currently claim back 10pc of your electricity bills in tax if working from home – and this rate will increase to 30pc in 2022. Remote workers can also currently claim 30pc of broadband costs back in tax.

However, difficulties claiming the relief have stopped some from doing so, according to Laura Bambrick, head of social policy and employment affairs with ICTU .

“The process of claiming the relief puts a cumbersome administrative burden on workers as it’s a vouched expenses system,” said Bambrick. It can also be difficult for tenants to claim the relief if the utility bills for the rented property the tenant is living in are in the landlord’s name, according to Bambrick.


Can I claim the relief in real time?

Not currently. However from the tax year 2022 and subsequent years, Revenue’s online system will allow remote workers to claim for remote working relief either in real time throughout the year as they pay their bills, or all together at the end of the year.


Renters and home-sharers

An individual who pays the electricity, heating or broadband bill is the person entitled to make a claim for remote working tax relief – as long as the conditions of the relief are met, according to a spokeswoman for the Revenue Commissioners.

“However, there may be circumstances where the bill is in a person’s name and others contribute to the payment – such as in a house sharing arrangement,” said the Revenue spokeswoman. “If an expense is shared between two or more people, the cost can be apportioned based on the amount paid by each individual. Each individual who contributes should keep proof of payment.” In such cases, relief should be claimed on the apportioned amount paid.

Whether a tenant can claim tax relief on remote working expenses – where the household bills are in the name of the landlord even though the tenant ultimately pays the bills, will depend “on the precise circumstances of the arrangements between the tenant and the landlord”, according to Revenue. “The onus will be on the remote worker to prove that he has incurred the expense on the utility bill for the provision of electricity, heating or an internet service and paid the amounts due,” said Revenue.

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