Whether its to provide refreshment for our clients or to keep our staff fully replenished and firing on all cylinders, we usually end up spending quite a bit on drinks and snacks in the course of running our business, but the rules around claiming these as a business expense on our tax returns aren’t always so simple at first glance.
As part of our passion for helping you complete your next self-assessment tax return without any hassle or complications, we put together this brief, simple guide to claiming tax relief on tea, coffee and other refreshments.
Can I claim?
It is not possible to claim for meals, drinks or other entertainments for clients as a business expense when filing your taxes.
The good news is that you can claim back some relief on keeping your team fed and watered during their working day.
You can claim for things like tea, biscuits, coffee and milk against the total cost of your annual income. The cost of food and drink for yourself or your team who have to travel to attend appointments can be claimed as a subsistence allowance.
The only allowable entertainment claims are for your payroll employees and must fit into HMRC’ s qualifying standards for an open to all staff annual event costing less than 150 pounds per attendee (e.g. New Year party). If the event does not fit one of these standards you will not be eligible for a tax deduction.
In the case of the latter, SimpleTax has a special category under your "Travel" group called "Subsistence (overnight business trips)".
In the former, you’ll find room to claim for your everyday tea break essentials in your self-employed expenses under "Computer and Office Equipment - Tea, coffee, fruit and biscuits".
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