Fixed deductions for expenses

By Tolley

The following Personal Tax guidance note by Tolley provides comprehensive and up to date tax information covering:

  • Fixed deductions for expenses
  • Fixed deductions
  • Actual expenses
  • Locally agreed allowances
  • Employer involvement in reporting employee entitlement

You are unlikely to see fixed deductions for expenses very often in practice. Fixed deductions are amounts of flat rate expenses which HMRC agrees with the relevant trade unions or other bodies to cover:

  • costs of maintaining or replacing the employee’s own tools
  • costs of the employee acquiring, cleaning or replacing work clothes

ITEPA 2003, s 367

For example, firefighters are entitled to a flat-rate allowance on the costs of cleaning and maintaining their uniforms where laundry services are not provided by their employers.

Fixed deductions do not include the approved mileage rate for business travel using the employee’s own car. This is treated as business travel, see the Business travel and subsistence expenses guidance note.

Fixed deductions

The rate agreed by HMRC represents an estimate of the annual cost for a particular class of employee in a particular trade. Fixed deductions are agreed to save the employee’s time and take them out of Self Assessment (since the fixed deduction can be included in the PAYE tax code meaning a Tax Return or stand alone claim is not needed).

More on Expenses — general principles: