Revenue Update - Travel & Subsistence Guidelines - Revenue eBrief No. 45/17

  • Expenses

These things don’t happen too often, but its good to see Revenue issuing updated Travel & Subsistence guidelines. Two separate manuals released today, 24th of May 2017  Tax & Duty Manual - Part 05-02-04 & Tax & Duty Manual - Part 05-02-05 provide additional information to aid workers with such expense claims. Icon Accounting is a founding member of the PCSO (Professional Contractors Services Organisation) and we welcome any additional guidelines issued by Revenue in relation to expenses for Professional Contractors. However, upon review of the latest Travel & Subsistence guidelines we feel there is still a need for Revenue to recognise and cater for the needs of this type of worker. The PCSO submission to the Department of Finance and Department of Social Protection comprehensively outlined the diverse work environments of Professional Contractors and the need for their legitimate costs to be recognised. Icon Accounting will continue to be part of the PCSO to be the voice of the Professional Contractor and to help and assist Revenue to develop the tax framework accordingly. In relation to these latest guidelines we welcome all updates and any additional guidelines they carry, particularly the clarity on ‘Normal Place of Work’. And the section stating: “An employee's home would not be regarded as the normal place of work unless there is an objective requirement that the duties of the office or employment must be performed at home. It is not sufficient for an employee merely to carry out some of the duties at home.” Plus the reference to “Usually, the employer will provide the facilities necessary for the work to be performed at the business premises. Even where an employee has to do some work at home or to keep some equipment at home, the place where he or she resides is a matter of personal choice and it would not be regarded as a place of work” This vindicates the position we have held on this and our professional understanding,  interpretation and explanation of the rules and the impact on Professional Contractors. It further provides confirmation for the need to comprehend such rules from pragmatic view, something which we strongly believe in. The general rules on motor expenses and subsistence have not changed (that journey from your home to work still cannot be claimed!) Rates and bands were changed last month and were first published by a trade union around the start of April… funny that! There’s a little more emphasis on overseas travel, badly needed in our opinion, in fact a separate manual on overseas travel would be greatly appreciated given the increased numbers of cross border and overseas workers. These numbers will surely increase over the next few years as Brexit gets into full flow. One curious new addition to the travel table is a section called “Reduced Motor Travel Rates” “Reduced mileage rates are payable for journeys associated with an individual’s job but not solely related to the performance of those duties.” Examples include:

  • attendance at confined promotion competitions
  • attendance at approved courses of education
  • attendance at courses or conferences
  • return visits home at weekends during periods of temporary transfer

The burning question is.. please define a temporary transfer! Icon Accounting will continue to keep you briefed on any changes and updates to Revenue guidelines. If you would like any further clarification on any matters relating to these current updates, please do not hesitate to contact us on via email or call us on  01-8077106. Team Icon

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