In the course of your day-to-day work, there are various costs you may need to cover. Just like any other employee, doctors and dentists are entitled to tax relief on certain expenses.
Claiming relief on every expense possible may seem a tedious and time-consuming task, but it’s important to remember if you’re looking for ways to lower your tax bill.
The following guidelines apply if you’re employed, but the rules are slightly different if you operate as a limited company. Talk to us for more information on claiming expenses as a company director.
You can claim travel expenses, and the cost of any meals or accommodation, for work-related journeys.
This could include travelling between two different places of work or travelling from home to a ‘temporary workplace’.
It doesn’t include the costs of ordinary commuting, though, so it can sometimes be difficult to determine which costs are allowed.
If you’re a consultant operating from different hospitals, or a dentist working for multiple practices, it’s best to seek advice on the travel expenses you can claim.
Professional membership fees
If you pay a membership or annual subscription fee to a professional body, you can claim the cost as an expense.
The list of eligible organisations is a long one, but includes the BMA, GMC, BDA and GDC.
Education and training
For a course or exam fee to be tax-deductible, it must be “an intrinsic part of the employment and one of the duties of the employment”.
This can include junior doctors who, in the terms of their contract, must attend and pass specific training courses to continue in their employment.
If this is not the case, even if the training is compulsory, HMRC will normally not allow expenses for training and continuing professional education.
This is a complicated area, so speak to us if you’re not sure whether you can claim for your education costs.
Tools and equipment
There’s no comprehensive list of the items you can claim as expenses, but you’ll usually be able to claim for buying tools and specialist equipment that you require to complete the duties of your job.
This can also include the costs of laundering your own uniform.
How to claim
To claim your expenses, you can use form P87 online, or file a self-assessment return if the amount you’re claiming relief on adds up to more than £2,500.
You’ll need to have all the relevant information to hand for this, including your records and receipts, and any calculations for business mileage.
If this sounds like a drain on your time, there’s no need to worry. Our medical and dental tax specialists can handle it for you instead.