490 Employee travel tax and NICs guide

19 April 2016

The 490: Employee travel - a tax and National Insurance contributions guide has been updated to reflect the removal of tax relief for home to work travel for those working through an employment intermediary. The guide has also been made available in PDF format.

From 6 April 2016 new legislation affects the application of the travel expenses and subsistence rules for workers who provide their services through an employment intermediary including those employed under overarching contracts of service. When such a worker personally provides services (other than an exception for ‘excluded services’ - those provided wholly in the client’s home) to a client through an employment intermediary, including a recruitment agency, umbrella company, personal service company (PSC) or other similar structure and their work is akin to an employee, then each assignment is considered to be a separate employment.

This will bring the rules for these workers in line with those who are engaged directly and therefore when a worker regularly commutes from home to a workplace for each assignment they will not be eligible for relief on travel and subsistence.

When the new legislation does not apply each workplace will continue to be treated as a temporary workplace with the tax and NICs treatment following the existing rules for travel to temporary workplaces.

See section 3.41 of the 490 guide for examples.