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No spared expenses

BY Paman Singh
Employment Law & HR
BG Purple

For the self-employed, January has an added gloom with the approach of the tax self-assessment deadline at the end of the month. However, at least self-employed individuals can perk themselves up at the thought of the tax savings they can make on business expenses. A meal out with business contacts, perhaps. Or a splurge on a new business laptop. Hmm, now we’re talking. Why not include a cheeky luxury holiday- every good worker needs some “me” time after all. Or all those after work Friday drinks with friends down the pub- surely they count too?


Sounds far fetched, right? Well, think again! These claims feature on a recently released HMRC list of the most outrageous expenses claims from self-employed individuals looking to reduce their tax bill. Other crazy claims include pet food for a shih tzu “guard dog”, luxury watches as Christmas presents for staff (from a company with no employees) and designer jeans as protective equipment for a painter and decorator. Needless to say, the taxman took a dim view of these expenses, which were all rejected.

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