did anyone claim for a tax rebate for washing their work uniform?

Posted 7th Aug 2008
just wondering how long it takes to hear anything?i wrote in about 2 and a half weeks ago
Community Updates
Claiming your tax rebate for your work uniform

There are many companies out there that advertise how they claim back your tax for your work uniform (for a fee, of course!) We’ll look at how to go through this process yourself for free:

Am I eligible?
First things first, you need to answer all of these questions with a YES, otherwise you will not be eligible to claim any form of tax rebate for your uniform:

  • Did I pay income tax in the year I am claiming for?
  • Do I wear a recognisable work uniform? This can be anything from a t-shirt with a company logo on, nurses or police uniform. (Also, it is maybe possible to claim if you wear unbranded clothing but that is worn specifically for work ONLY.)
  • Does my employer require me to wear this specific clothing for work?
  • Am I solely responsible for the purchase, cleaning, repairing or replacing of my uniform? You can't claim if your employer washes it or there are facilities available for you to do this at work, or if they pay you for any washing or repairing of your work clothes.

If you are in the armed forces it is unlikely that you’ll be eligible to claim as the costs of maintenance of your uniform will be processed through your higher tax-free personal allowance already on your tax code.

If you are in the police, it’s worth checking whether your force already claims this as it differs across the country. You might be eligible to claim if they don’t.

You can’t claim for the initial purchase of your work uniform.

How much could I get?
This all depends on the industry you work in and rate at which your are taxed (either the basic-rate or higher-rate tax brackets).

  • First check what the flat rate expense is offered in your industry through the HMRC website here. If your job sector is not listed here then the standard flat rate of £60 per year applies (2018/19).
  • Check whether you pay the basic or higher tax rate (I’m sure you know this already!)
  • Then calculate how much tax rebate for you uniform you could claim back:

For a basic-rate tax payer, you can claim 20% of the flat rate expense per tax year. For example, if your job has the standard flat rate of £60 per year, then you can claim back £12.

For a higher-rate tax payer, you can claim 40% of the flat rate expense per tax year. For example, if your job has the standard flat rate of £60 per year, then you can claim back £24.

Currently, the only way you can get more than these standard payments would be if you can prove that your annual uniform laundry and maintenance bill is higher, through keeping detailed receipts.

How do I apply?
You need to apply through HMRC using form P87, this can be done online or by post. Click here for more details.

HMRC will ask you for:

  • Your employer's name and address.
  • Your occupation, job title and the industry sector in which you work.
  • Your personal details.
  • Your National Insurance Number
  • Your PAYE reference.
  • Whether you're claiming flat rate expenses (if not, you'll need detailed records and receipts to hand.)
  • Your bank account details for payments.

Can I claim from previous tax years?
Yes, currently HMRC allows you to claim back maintenance of uniform for up to 4 previous tax years, on top of this current year, so five years in total. However, once you've made the claim your new tax code will reflect this and you won't need to claim again whilst you stay in your current job or profession.

When will I get paid?
HMRC states to allow 5 weeks for the processing of your claim. Once it has been processed, you’ll receive a letter telling you how much you have been awarded and details of how they will pay you.
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