Tuesday, 4 September 2012

How to Claim Your Uniform Tax Rebate

Do you wear a uniform to work and earn enough to pay income tax? You're probably entitled to a tax refund! :)

If you have to wear a specific uniform to work and wash and repair it yourself, you are entitled to reclaim tax relief for uniform maintenance. This is taken from the income tax you have paid, and HMRC requires that:
  • It's a recognisable uniform
  • Your employer requires you to wear it
  • You have to pay for laundering it yourself (so either wash it at home or pay to wash it at the laundrette)
  • There are no facilities provided for you to wash it for free at work
  • You have to have paid income tax in the year in which you are claiming for

How much am I entitled to?
The basic tax relief is £60 a year, although some jobs are higher if agreed by their union. If you are reclaiming tax already paid, this means you will probably get a rebate of 20% of £60 (if you pay the 20% basic rate tax), which is £12. Some professions can also claim for tool maintenance if used for their job. 

You can reclaim uniform tax relief from up to four years ago, so if you've never claimed before you have a few quid coming your way! It might not be £100s but it's worth the cost of a stamp!

Please note: you must have paid at least the amount of income tax you are trying to claim back in order to be eligible!

How can I claim my uniform tax rebate?
It's very easy to reclaim your uniform tax allowance and no, you don't have to sit on hold for an hour to do it. All you have to do is write to HMRC (HM Revenue & Customs, Pay As You Earn, PO Box 1970, Liverpool, L75 1WX) stating the following:

  • Your name, National Insurance number and address.
  • Your occupation(s) and your employer's name and address for the past four years (if applicable)
  • What your uniform consists of and why you cannot wear it outside of work (for example, it has a company logo)
  • Inform them that there are no laundry services or payment for laundry costs provided by your employer (of course, if you DO have laundry costs reimbursed then you are not eligible for this tax relief).

Template Letter
Here's the letter I sent to reclaim my tax, with places for you to enter your own details:

Your address
Dear Sir/Madam,

I am writing to request a possible work uniform tax rebate. I wore a uniform during the following jobs:

Date - Date : Job title at Employer, employer's address
Date - Date : Job title at Employer, employer's address
Date - Date : Job title at Employer, employer's address
(include all jobs you wore uniforms for within the last four tax years, as well as your current job with a uniform if you have one)

No laundry service or compensation was provided for the cleaning of these uniforms by any employer.

The uniforms were specific to each job and could not be worn outside of work:
  • Description of uniform for job one: (eg. black shirt with company logo, black work trousers)
  • Description of uniform for job two
  • Description of uniform for job three
    Etc. etc.

Many thanks for your time.

Yours Faithfully,
NI number
Date of birth

A Happy Ending
I was sent a cheque for £54 to cover the costs of laundering my uniform in the past! 
Give it a try! You have nothing to lose (but the price of a stamp) and you could get a nice bit of cash back for the past few years!

Have you tried this? How did it go?


Meanqueen said...

I have heard about this before but in all the years of working I never claimed it. Well done for getting some money back.

Pamela said...

Good move on doing this! There are so many "little" things that can pay off if you know about them/take advantage of them.

Glyn said...

Thank you for this! I've been meaning to write such a letter on behalf of my partner, but your template really helped me. Written, printed and ready to post! Thanks again!