Tax Rebate For Uniform Guide

If you are required to wear a uniform for your job and are responsible for washing, repairing, or replacing it at your own expense you could be entitled to a tax rebate for your uniform.

To make a successful tax back for uniform claim you must meet the eligibility criteria set out by HMRC (the tax office).

Not all clothing worn for work is classed by HMRC as a uniform for uniform tax relief purposes.

Your job title doesn’t affect your entitlement to make a uniform tax reclaim only the fact that you work clothing passes HMRC’s conditions.

You can make a tax rebate for uniform claim for the current tax year and HMRC allows you to backdate a claim for the previous four tax years as well.

HMRC expects you to let them know that you qualify for uniform tax relief and follow their strict claims process for past tax years.

Our tax rebate for uniform guide let’s you know what HMRC classes as a uniform and how to make your uniform tax reclaim for as many years as you can.

Am I eligible to claim a tax rebate for your uniform?

Before submitting a uniform tax reclaim it is best to check that your situation meets HMRC’s eligibility criteria:

For HMRC to consider a uniform tax relief claim you must:

  • Have to wear a branded uniform as part of your job like a nurse, firefighter, or a shop worker; in some cases a uniform with a detachable name badge may be allowed.
  • Pay for the laundry costs of caring for your uniform yourself.
  • For specialist clothing like overalls or safety boots you must clean, repair or replace them at your own cost.
  • Be a taxpayer in the tax year you make your claim. This is important because HMRC can only give you a tax rebate if you have actually paid tax in the year of your claim.
  • Not receive reimbursement from your employer for your uniform cleaning costs OR be provided with laundering facilities at work.

You are not eligible for uniform tax relief on the following:

How much is a uniform tax reclaim worth?

HMRC values the uniform allowance differently based on the type of industry you work in.

The minimum and most common uniform allowance is valued at £60 per tax year, rising up to £720.

How much uniform tax back you will receive will also depend on the rate of tax you pay on your income.

HMRC does not give you the value of the full uniform allowance as cash.

You will receive tax relief on the value of your uniform allowance at the highest rate you pay tax on your income which is typically at either 20% or 40%.

Uniform tax back example

The most common flat rate uniform allowance is worth £60 per tax year.

In this example if you are a standard tax rate taxpayer paying tax at 20% you are eligible to receive a refund of £12 which is 20% of £60.

Individuals who fall into the higher tax bracket paying tax at 40% you will receive a refund of  £24 which is 40% of £60.

You can use our Free Uniform Tax Refund Calculator to calculate an estimate of what your claim could be worth.

How many years can I claim a tax rebate for uniform?

You can make a claim for the last four tax years even if you’ve changed employer in that time.

If your circumstances change and you stop washing your own uniform you need to tell HMRC so they can remove the allowance from your tax code.

Do I need receipts to claim a uniform rebate?

There is no need to maintain records or receipts for costs when claiming a flat rate for uniform tax.

The advantage of using a flat rate expense is that it eliminates the trouble of tracking how much you spend on maintaining your uniform and/or buying tools for your work.

How to claim a tax rebate for your uniform

Typically to reclaim your uniform tax relief you need to submit a form P87 to HMRC.

If you complete a self assessment tax return already you should include your uniform claim on your tax return.

If you are just claiming for the washing of your uniform or protective clothing and not any other expenses you don’t need to provide any receipts with your claim.

If you are claiming for other work expenses like the actual cost of tools and equipment or for business mileage the process does become more complex with evidence usually necessary in a particular format.

Claiming for uniform tax relief on a P87 form

To claim for your uniform the tax office require a P87 form to be completed usually online.

The P87 can be printed out as well so you can send it by post to HMRC.

You need to include all tax years of your claim (up to a maximum of four) for each employer on the form and be careful to select the correct flat rate expense for your job title and industry.

When the tax office process your P87 you should receive any tax rebate due for previous tax years either in the form of a cheque or a bank transfer in about 8-12 weeks.

You have the choice of how to receive your payment when you complete the form.

The tax office will also send you a P800 form detailing what they have done and how much you are owed in each tax year of your claim.

Sometimes your current tax code can be updated so you receive any tax rebate due by paying less tax in the current year.

Your tax code and the uniform allowance

Making a claim usually means your tax code updates for the current tax year.

This means the uniform allowance adjusts your tax code to give you uniform tax relief throughout the tax year.

The uniform allowance should remain in your tax code unless something changes which means you don’t need to submit a new claim to HMRC each year.

Does my tax code include the uniform allowance?

You might already have the uniform allowance in your code and if you have you don’t need to claim again.

The uniform allowance increases your personal allowance which in turn reduces the amount of tax that you need to pay.

Checking your tax code before you claim can be done through your online personal tax account or you can download the HMRC app which is available for android and apple devices.

Can I claim other allowances with my uniform claim?

You may be able to include other applicable tax reliefs at the same time as claiming for your uniform.

Some popular other tax reliefs include:

By adding all your entitlements together you can significantly increase the tax rebate you’re owed.

You can use our other free tax and tax rebate guides to find out more so you can include them with your claim for uniform tax.

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