The Cost of Travelling from Home to Work

For the taxpayer, generally the cost of travelling from home to work is not an allowable expense.   Carrying on significant business activities at home does not necessarily mean that travel between home and another place where business is conducted is allowable.   It is useful to establish where the business is carried out.   It is normally clear cut if the taxpayer owns or rents business premises.    However there are some types of business where the taxpayer has no office away from their business but visits clients away from their residence which is normally allowable.   In the case of Newsom v Robertson (BIM37605), a barrister worked partly at his chambers and partly at his home.   This case highlights how the business base needs to be established in each individual situation.

BIM37620 makes specific reference to the ‘itinerant’ trader.  An itinerant trader travels from their home to a number of different locations to complete a job of work, after which, they attend a different location.   Their base of operations is at their residence therefore costs of travelling between the residence and the sites at which the trader works is normally allowable.   A typical example would be a jobbing builder.

Further to the ‘itinerant’ trader, it is also worth reading  BIM3765 which references a case of travel costs from home to business in the case of a milkman who chooses to reside away from his round.

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