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Claiming Tax Relief On Employment Expenses with a P87 Form

Searching for a P87 Form to claim employment expenses? Here you’ll find out where to find a P87 form, tips on filling it in as well as the criteria you need to meet to claim a tax rebate for working from home during coronavirus, mileage and uniforms.

Friendly Disclaimer: Whilst I am an accountant, I’m not your accountant. The information in this article is legally correct but it is for guidance and information purposes only. Everyone’s situation is different and unique so you’ll need to use your own best judgement when applying the advice that I give to your situation. If you are unsure or have a question be sure to contact a qualified professional because mistakes can result in penalties.

1. What is a P87?

A P87 form is an HMRC form that you need to use to claim income tax relief on certain employment expenses. These expenses are the ones that you are required to pay for yourself for work purposes but your employer doesn’t give you the money back for. You can complete the form online on the HMRC website or choose to print and post the form instead.

2. What Employment Expenses Can You Claim on a P87?

You can claim income tax relief on the following employment expenses:

3. How Much Can You Claim Working From Home

During 2020 and 2021 we were all asked to work from home due to the Coronavirus pandemic. If you were asked to work from home then you can claim income tax relief for the extra cost incurred for things like utilities and broadband. It’s tricky to work out the exact amount you can claim and you’ll need to keep receipts as well as detailed workings of how you calculated the amount of tax deduction you are entitled to. To make it easy, HMRC let you claim a flat rate instead. The amount you can claim is:

  • £4 per week to 5 April 2020
  • £6 per week from 6 April 2020

3.1 How to Claim

You can claim the HMRC working from home allowance in two ways:

  • Via Your Employer: your employer can reimburse your tax-free through your payslip. To do this you’ll need to check that your employer is signed up to this scheme and then you’ll need to keep receipts to support your claim.
  • Via HMRC Online with a P87 Form: you can head over to HMRC, set up an online account if you haven’t already and make your claim for the working from home allowance, as well as any other expenses you may have incurred like mileage.

You cannot claim a tax deduction for working from home unless your employer specifically requested you to do this, like in the case of coronavirus. If you choose to work from home, but your employer provides you with a place to work, you cannot claim income tax relief.

4. Where to Find the P87 Form

4.1 Go Online

To claim online, head over to the HMRC website and fill out the P87 online through your personal tax account (you’ll need to set one up if you don’t have one).

4.2 Claim By Post

To claim by post, you’ll need to complete a different version of the P87 form, then print and post it to HMRC (the address is on the form)

4.3 Claim by Phone

To claim by phone, call HMRC on 0300 200 3300. You’ll need to have your national insurance number ready to confirm your identity. You can only make your P87 claim by phone if you are claiming expenses for the previous year and your total expenses are less than £1,000 (or £2,500 for professional fees and subscriptions).

5. How Much Will You Receive?

Your tax rebate will depend on:

  • The highest rate of income tax you pay
  • The amount you are entitled to claim for
  • Which tax years you are claiming

In the case of working from home, it rose from £4 week to £6 week on 6 April 2020. That means if you were working from home the time that we went into Lockdown in the UK on 23 March you’ll be able to claim:

  • 2 weeks at £4 per week
  • £6 per week from 6 April until you went back to your office

Let’s say you went back to your office on 1 June, you’ll claim income tax relief for working from home of £56 (2 weeks x £4 plus 8 weeks at £6). If the highest rate of tax you pay is 20%, you’ll receive a tax rebate of £11.20 (£56 x 20%).

6. Additional Guidance on Filling in Your P87

One form relates to one tax year. That means if you are claiming for different tax years, you’ll need to complete more than one form. The P87 form is divided into different sections. You only need to complete the ones relevant to your claim. The sections are:

  • Tax Year of Claim;
  • Personal and Employers Details – you’ll need to provide details of your employer, including their HMRC reference which you will find on a payslip;
  • Flat Rate Expense Claim for Uniforms
  • Vehicle Expense Claim, including work mileage
  • Professional subscriptions
  • Hotel and meal expenses
  • Other expenses
  • General expenses
  • Declaration
p87 form online
P87 form

7. How Is Your P87 Tax Rebate Paid?

Once approved by HMRC, both you and your employer will receive a P6 notification from HMRC notifying you of a change to your tax code. Your employer will then change your tax code on your payslip and you’ll receive your rebate through your payslip.