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6 “Tell-Tale” Signs That You Could Be Due A Tax Rebate (Part 2 of 2)

In our previous article we listed the first three of 6 “tell-tale” signs that you could be due a tax rebate. Although tax rebates can’t (unfortunately) always apply to every taxpayer, everyone should at least check because this is about YOUR money! Here’s the final instalment...

With the start of the new tax year beginning on 6th of April, NOW is the ideal time to claim any tax rebate that you may be entitled for the last 4 tax years.

4. 4. You launder your work uniform yourself

If you are expected to wear a uniform, did you know that HMRC allows a flat rate deduction for the cost of washing your own uniform or specialised clothing (which could even include shoe wear and stockings in some circumstances)?

Depending on your profession and the type of industry, flat rate expenses can range from £60 to £140 per tax year! The applicable tax relief for uniform allowance would only be 20% of that sum, but cumulated over the last 4 tax years, the money you could get back from the Taxman may not be insignificant. Generally, as a result of a claim for a tax rebate, HMRC would modify your tax code to account for these flat rate expenses, meaning that you should be paying less tax over time. Definitely worth claiming the uniform allowance flat rate, if you ask me!

4. 5. You left (or are planning to leave) the UK permanently (not for a holiday)

Maybe you are a foreign national and you decided to return to your home country; maybe you are a UK citizen and you decided to emigrate or relocate overseas. Maybe you even returned to live in the UK at a later date. You would usually be due a refund because the chances are you wouldn't have used all of your personal allowance within the tax year during which you left (or planning to leave) the UK.

If you only worked part of a tax year in any of the last 4 years and actually paid tax, then you might very well be due some of it back! Similarly, you could qualify for a tax refund if in future you decide to leave the UK permanently.

4. 6. You are part of the Construction Industry Scheme (CIS) scheme

CIS workers typically get some of the largest tax rebates. The CIS scheme is designed to deduct tax at source from construction workers who are self employed and get work from firms as subcontractors. If a CIS-registered firm employs you as a subcontractor, then they would deduct 20% income tax from your gross wages and pay HMRC the tax on your behalf. This means that you are in fact overtaxed. How so?

Because you didn't receive any of your personal allowance and you got taxed on your gross income, not your profit. By claiming tax relief for any legitimate work-related expenses, you could reduce your overall tax liability even further, thus increasing the value of any tax refund that may be due to you.

A word of warning, though. Being a self employed CIS worker means that you are expected by HMRC to complete a yearly tax return under self assessment within strict deadlines. Make sure you respect these deadlines because if you don’t, HMRC would automatically impose on you financial penalties, which in turn would be deducted from any tax refund due to you.

As mentioned in part 1, although you could easily complete a tax rebate claim yourself online via HMRC’s website, some cases could prove quite complex and you may require help from a registered tax professional (read our blog article on our website for advice on how to choose a reputable tax agent).

On July 7, 2015