HMRC urges people to claim up to £500 in tax relief

As many employees prepare for the return to the office, they are reminded to claim tax relief available to those who have been working from home.

Almost 800,000 people who have worked from home during the Covid-19 pandemic have claimed tax relief for their situation so far this tax year.

Figures have been released by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) through its online claims portal, which stated that the saving is worth up to £125 per year per employee.

Read more: Martin Lewis urges Brits to ‘spread the word’ about £500 Covid school isolation payment

This can be backdated for four years though, if people were working from home before the pandemic, making a total maximum claim of £500.

Eligible workers can claim the full year’s entitlement if they have been told to work from home by their employer, even if it has only been for one day during the tax year.

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The new tax year started on April 6, with more than three million claims for the tax relief having previously been received for the 2020/21 tax year.

People can check if they can claim on the GOV.UK website.

Myrtle Lloyd, HMRC’s director-general for customer services, said: “More people are getting back to office working now, but it’s not too late to apply for tax relief on household expenses if they’ve been working from home during the pandemic.”

Since April last year, the maximum amount employers have been able to pay tax-free without employees having to provide evidence of an increased bill was set at £6 a week.

Employees who have not received the working from home expenses payment direct from their employer can apply to receive the tax relief from HMRC.

Eligible customers can claim tax relief based on the rate at which they pay tax.

For example, if an employed worker pays the 20 per cent basic rate of tax and claims tax relief on £6 a week, they would receive £1.20 a week in tax relief (20 per cent of £6 a week) towards the cost of their household bills.

Higher-rate taxpayers would receive £2.40 a week (40 per cent of £6 a week).

Over the course of the year, this means people can reduce the tax they pay by £62.40 or £124.80 respectively.

HMRC said it will accept backdated claims for up to four years and people can receive a lump sum payment for any successful backdated claims.

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