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HMRC Tax Form P87: Tax Relief for Employee Business Mileage

Andre Spiteri
Man sitting on floor in living room and calculating bills|HMRC Tax Form P87: What To Know About This Document

Do you regularly incur work-related expenses that your employer doesn’t reimburse you for? While this can be frustrating, there’s some good news: you may be able to claim tax relief by filling out HMRC form P87. Read on to find out when you can use this form and how to complete it.

When can I use HMRC Form P87?

You can use Form P87 to claim tax relief if:

  • You're an employee
  • Your allowable expenses for the tax year are less than £2,500

When can't I use HMRC Form P87?

You can’t use Form P87 if:

  • You’re self-employed
  • You’ve already completed a self-assessment tax return
  • Your expenses total more than £2,500 in a given year
  • In each of these cases, you’ll need to complete or update your self-assessment tax return

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What can I claim tax relief for?

You can claim tax relief for the following work-related expenses:

  • Miles travelled using your own vehicle (car, van, motorcycle or cycle). You can’t claim for mileage between your home and a permanent workplace
  • Actual fuel costs for business journeys in a company vehicle
  • Professional fees or subscriptions to approved professional organisations
  • Hotel and meal expenses and business phone calls in hotels
  • Parking, toll fees and public transport costs
  • Expenses associated with working at home
  • Cleaning, repair or replacement of specialist clothing and small tools you need to do your job. You can either claim exactly what you’ve spent or a ‘flat rate deduction’. If you use a flat rate deduction, you don’t need to provide evidence of your expenses.

How do I use HMRC Form P87 to claim tax relief?

You can only claim tax relief if your employer hasn’t reimbursed you for your expenses. If you’ve received partial reimbursement—for instance, you receive 25p per mile rather than HMRC’s approved mileage rate of 45p per mile—you can claim tax relief on the difference.You can complete your P87 form online or by completing a postal form.You’ll need the following information to hand:

  • Your National Insurance number
  • Your employer’s PAYE reference and your employee number (these will be on your payslip)
  • Details of your allowable expenses
  • Employer contributions towards your expenses

How much will I get back?

The amount of tax relief you’ll receive depends on what rate of tax you pay. For example, if you’re a basic rate taxpayer claiming tax relief on £1,000 of allowable expenses, you’ll receive £200, that is 20 per cent of £1,000.If you’re claiming tax relief for the current tax year, HMRC will typically adjust your tax code and deduct less tax to take account of this. If you’re claiming for a previous year, you may receive a cheque or bank transfer for the amount owed.

How do I evidence my claim?

You need to keep records and receipts for all expenses you’re claiming.You don’t have to submit these with your P87 form. However, HMRC may ask to see your evidence. If you’re claiming business mileage, you’ll need to keep records of the locations and distances of all your work journeys.

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