Those working from home and struggling with cost-of-living can claim tax relief on electricity, heating and broadband bills immediately for home working days
More than 1,600 remote workers who have been hit by huge energy price hikes have lodged claims to get tax relief in their next pay packet since the start of the year.
Revenue has confirmed that €66,000 has been paid due to a new facility that allows people to claim e-working expenses in real time.
Those struggling with the cost-of-living squeeze can claim tax relief on their electricity, heating and broadband bills immediately for their home-working days, rather than having to wait until the end of the year.
If a worker’s employer does not pay them a €3.20 a day tax-free allowance that is permitted by Revenue to cover expenses, they are entitled to get money back from their taxes.
Since January this year, workers can claim e-working relief for 30pc of the cost of heating, electricity and broadband for the days spent working from home.
A Revenue spokesperson said 1,635 individuals have submitted claims in real-time in respect of remote working relief.
She said relief of approximately €66,000 has been granted by issuing revised tax credit certificates for 2022.
The spokesperson said the facility to claim tax credits in real time in respect of remote working relief was launched in January.
It is available via the myAccount PAYE service online.
The spokesperson said to make a claim in “real-time” the taxpayer must upload a readable image of their receipts to a receipt tracker.
“Receipts are required in this instance as the amount claimed increases the taxpayer’s current-year tax credits for which that person will see a benefit in his or her next payroll payment from an employer,” she said.
Laura Bambrick, head of social policy and employment affairs at the Irish Congress of Trade Unions, said she was surprised there are already over 1,000 users as the service has not been promoted.
“Over 1,000 users is brilliant because it hasn’t been advertised for people,” she said. “It was only set up in January and most aren’t aware of it.
“If you put in a bill now, you should see it in your next wage packet.
“I think it’s something people will be interested in given the high cost of energy bills and just looking to save the pennies.
“It was good over recent budgets that the rebate on utilities increased from 10pc to 30pc.
“The difficulty was that you had to wait until the end of the tax year to get your tax relief back and were not getting relief at the same time the bill was falling due.
“This is a particular hardship for people on a lower income and renters.
“At the moment, the high cost of living is being driven by energy prices, the lights and the gas bill, so it is really important to have this facility.”
She said the same real-time facility is available to people claiming tax relief on nursing home charges and medical expenses.