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Working From Home Expense Claims

The recent COVID pandemic has affected many businesses, large and small; the self-employed, and also millions of employees. Many employees found themselves either working on the frontline, furloughed, or were able to continue working from home.

Whilst support has been made available in a variety of ways for businesses, very little noise was made about the options available for employees who continued to work.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Did you work from home at any time during the pandemic, either full or part-time?
  • Does your work require you to work from home for at least 1 day a week?
  • Was your work from home temporary, and you have now returned to the office?

Whether you would normal work from home or you had to relocate to a room at home due to COVID, all eligible employees are entitled to claim the Work From Home Allowance. The same applies if you are a director of a company. However, if you are self-employed then different rules apply.

Employees who work from home

Many employees have the option to work from home sometimes. And this significantly increased due to the pandemic.

You don’t have to run your own business or have to provide receipts for things you bought. Unless you are making a separate expense claim – this is a bit different.

Employees can claim the Work From Home Allowance.

You are able to claim the £6 per week, or £26 per month, to cover the additional costs incurred. For previous tax years the amount that you could claim was only £4 per week, or £18 per month.

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Making a Claim

Employees can claim the work from home allowance directly from your employer. You will need to check with your employer if this is the case.

Alternatively, employees can claim directly from HMRC:

  • Are you registered for self-assessment? If so, then you must include your claim on the employment pages of your self-assessment tax return.
  • If you are not registered for self-assessment then you can claim by completing a Form P87.

HMRC have a dedicated webpage which includes a direct link to the Form P87. Click here to find out more.

You can make a claim either online or by post. You may be able to claim by phone if you have already claimed expenses in a previous tax year.

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Who is Eligible?

To be eligible for claiming the Work from Home Allowance, you must have a genuine requirement to work from home. For example:

  • It is part of your employment contract.
  • Your normal office location is made unavailable, e.g. due to repairs and maintenance.
  • Your employer has made a specific request or approved your request to work from home.
  • A legal statute is in place requiring you to work from home e.g. Covid-19 restrictions

You will not be entitled to make a claim for any other expenses should you voluntarily decide to work from home. For example, you decided to work from home and so purchased a new monitor to make it easier. You would not be able to claim for the new monitor.

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What else can you claim for?

You may have had to purchase additional items to assist you whilst working from home., Perhaps you have incurred increased utility costs and charges.

By keeping receipts for the things you have purchased you will be able to make a claim from your employer. This may also include utility bills where you can show evidence of the increased usage charges. HMRC has a simple method of calculating these costs where evidence of increased usage is not available.

You cannot make a claim for items purchased voluntarily as you must have authorisation from your employer first.

Expenses paid by your employer will usually be reported on your P11D unless dispensations are in place.

Other types of expenses that you may wish to claim for as as follows:.

  • Flat rate expenses
  • Using your own vehicle for work
  • Hotels, other accommodation and meals
  • Use of home phone or mobile – only if costs are identifiable

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How Onyx Accountants can help you?

We can help to identify if the expenses that you wish to claim are genuinely business related. We can also advise on how much tax relief you may be entitled to.

If you have any doubts about the expenses incurred whilst working from home then we can help you.

Registered for self-assessment? We would recommend completing your next tax return early, ensuring that the correct expenses are claimed. It makes perfect sense if you are due a refund. We want to make sure that any refunds due are received as soon as possible. We can also advise on how best to make provision for any additional tax payments due by 31st January 2022.

By using Onyx Accountants and Business Advisors to undertake a review of your additional expenses along with your self-assessment tax return, you can be sure that a thorough review will be completed.

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If you have any queries, or want to discuss further, please give us a call; or e-mail us at for a FREE no obligation consultation.

Got any questions or queries? Our friendly team of tax specialists are happy to help. Just drop us a line! Call us on 0121 753 5522 or 01902 759 800.

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