Revenue have today announced new rules for mileage and subsistence expense claims by individuals who provide services to third party customers via a limited company.
The main purpose of the updated rules seems to be to prohibit an employee or company director from claiming expenses in respect of travel to and from a home office – even if this is a company’s registered office or administration location.
It appears that valid expense claims may be entertained for travel between client locations, but not in any circumstances between the person’s home and the third party customer’s premises.
The new rules are contained in a Revenue Tax Briefing issued today.
They are likely to have significant ramifications for small business owners.
I would be concerned that they will make it considerably harder for many businesses to make ends meet, and they may well render some jobs (and possibly entire businesses) unviable.
They also appear, at first glance, to discriminate against companies operating from a home office. A director of such a company operating in, say, Dublin will now be unable to claim motor or subsistence expenses for business trips to Donegal or Kerry.
On the other hand, if the company rents a non-home office premises 100 metres away from the directors’ home, the entire expenses will be allowable.
This appears neither sensible nor just.
The full implications (and legality) of the new rules will only become clear in due course.
If you are likely to be affected by the new rules, you should consider seeking professional advice on their effects in the near future.