Which expenses can I claim against tax?

Which expenses can I claim against tax?

The general rule whether an expense is deductible for income tax purposes is that the expense must be incurred wholly and exclusively for the purpose of your practice. A distinction is drawn between capital expenditure and revenue expenditure. If revenue expenditure conforms to the general rule then it is allowed in full, or perhaps a proportion may be disallowed for private use. Relief for capital expenditure such as, for example, the cost of your computer and car is given in the form of capital allowances. You can also claim tax relief for some of your court clothing, subject to certain rules. Typical expenses include:

  • Clerk’s fees
  • Chambers’ expenses
  • Subscriptions, books and journals
  • Postage and stationery
  • Upkeep of wig and gown, collars, bands and studs
  • Professional indemnity insurance
  • Telephone
  • Light and heat and mortgage interest payments (if you use your home as an office).
  • Motor expenses
  • Rail and air fares, car hire and hotel expenses
  • Equipment hire
  • Secretarial expenses
  • Accountancy fees
  • Bank charges and interest
  • Hire purchase interest

In the case of telephone, motor expenses and expenses of a home office, you must work out the proportion of those expenses that are applicable to your practice. We can give you guidance for this calculation – see our FAQ on working from home.  In the case of motor expenses, you should keep a mileage log for a representative sample period in order to demonstrate your typical pattern of motoring. Also see our FAQ on mileage logs.

This answer was last checked May 2017. This answer is for general guidance only. It provides an outline, and may not include points which are important in your case. You should not rely on this answer without taking individual advice based on the full facts of your case. The information given was correct at the time of release.