Wheelers Words

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Mar 30, 2020

Wheelers Words: Latest update on COVID-19 Support

Income Tax July 2020 payment deferral

HMRC had originally indicated that the payment due on 31st July 2020 could only be deferred if you were self-employed. They have now confirmed this is available to all taxpayers who have a payment on account to be made at the end of July.

HMRC Helpline

The support telephone number has changed to 0800 024 1222, they are open Monday – Friday 8.00 -4.00.

Employees working from home (rules are not new but worth repeating at this time)

Check which expenses are taxable as benefit in kind if your employee works from home due to coronavirus (COVID-19). Extracts from HMRC guidance:

Mobile phones and SIM cards (no restriction on private use)
If you provide a mobile phone and SIM card without a restriction on private use, limited to one per employee, this is non-taxable.

If your employee already pays for broadband, then no additional expenses can be claimed.

If a broadband internet connection is needed to work from home and one was not already available, then the broadband fee can be reimbursed by you and is non-taxable. In this case, the broadband is provided for business and any private use must be limited.

Laptops, tablets, computers, and office supplies
If these are mainly used for business purposes and not significant private use, these are non-taxable.

Additional expenses like electricity, heating or broadband
Payment or reimbursement to your employees of up to £4 a week (£6 a week from 6 April 2020) is non-taxable for the additional household expenses incurred when your employee is working from home.

Employer provided loans
A salary advance or loan to help your employee at a time of hardship counts as an employment-related loan. Loans provided with a value less than £10,000 in a tax year are non-taxable.

Employees using their own vehicle for business
You can pay approved mileage allowance payments of 45p per mile up to 10,000 miles (25p per mile thereafter) free of tax and National Insurance contributions.

Significant private use
For items which are taxable, exemptions for work related benefits must show that there is no significant private use.