Recovering VAT on staff expenses

Although the VAT rules normally prevent you reclaiming VAT on supplies that are not made direct to you, there are certain circumstances when the rules are relaxed.

Subsistence expenses

For instance, the VAT element of subsistence expenses paid to your employees may be treated as input tax. In order to qualify for this concession, employees must be reimbursed for their actual expenditure and not merely receive round sum allowances.

VAT invoices (which may be made out to the employee) must also be obtained.

Reimbursement for road fuel

The VAT legislation permits you to treat as your own supply road fuel which is purchased by a non-taxable person whom you then pay for the actual cost of the fuel. This would therefore allow you to recover input tax when you reimburse your employees for the cost of road fuel used in carrying out their employment duties.

Again, VAT invoices must be obtained.

Mileage allowances

The legislation also enables you to reclaim the VAT element (or a reasonable approximation) on the amount attributable to fuel of mileage allowances paid to employees (or subcontractors). The fuel element must be close to the fuel-only mileage rates.

HMRC requires the following records to be kept:

  • The mileage travelled and whether business or private
  • The vehicle’s c.c.
  • Rate of mileage allowance
  • The amount of input tax claimed

VAT receipts should be provided by staff, which must total the amount on which VAT is reclaimed each quarter.

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SJD Accountancy are the UK's largest specialist provider of fixed fee, Limited company accountancy services to contractors; we've been acting for contractors across the UK since 1992 and have more than 15,000 clients.

We are the only national specialist firm of contractor accountants with offices nationwide. SJD Accountancy has more qualified staff than any other firm in our market with qualifications from the following major tax and accountancy bodies - ATT, AAT, CTA, ACCA, CA, ACA and FCCA.

  • Unlimited face to face meetings. This is a unique service only SJD Accountancy offers - unlimited face to face meetings across the UK - tax is complicated and sometimes only a meeting will do.
  • UK's Largest contractor accountants with more qualified staff. No call centres, no outsourcing, no automated call handling. Simply telephone, email or meet your own dedicated accountant face to face.
  • Money back service guarantee. All your Emails received by 4pm on any normal working day will be answered the same day. Should it be necessary to leave a telephone message it will be answered same day/following day latest or we will make a full refund of that months fee.
  • Outstanding reputation. We have won more awards for customer service and accountancy excellence than any other firm in our market, including: Best Accountant for Contractors, Accountant of the Year and Best Professional Service Team to name just a few.
  • All inclusive low cost fixed fee accountancy package which includes completion of accounts*, payroll bureau, dividends and corporation tax computations, personal taxation, free bookkeeping software, your own dedicated accountant* and all company returns for a fixed fee starting from £120 plus VAT per month. Check our packages for more detail.

If you have any questions about contracting or would like any further advice please call our new client services helpdesk on 01442 275789 or email: janice@sjdaccountancy.com. Our new client services helpdesk is open Monday to Friday (8am to 6pm).

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*If you would like us to complete your company year end accounts we simply ask that you have been a client of SJD for one year or have made 12 monthly payments. All accountants are part or fully qualified.