Contractors' Questions: Can I claim expenses if extended at 24 months?
Contractor’s Question: As a contractor I work on-site less than 40% of the time, but my contract has been extended over the 24-month point. Can I continue to claim travel expenses?
Expert’s Answer: If you’re working on an assignment for longer than 24 months, there is still a possibility of claiming travel expenses.
If you work on-site for more than 40% of the time and you have been working with the client for over 24 months, you would not be able to claim travel expenses, as this would be deemed to be your permanent site and expenses would not be allowed for travel to and from this location. As you work on-site less than 40% of the time, you will still be able to claim travel expenses to this site.
If you work on multiple contracts involving you working at more than one site on a regular basis, the decision of being allowed to enter travel-related expenses is based on the percentage of time spent at each location.
In this case, you’d need to establish what percentage of the total time will be spent at the one client location, to see if you are affected by the 40% rule. If it is less than 40%, then it does not matter if you are working at the site for longer than 24 months; if it is more than 40% at one site, then this is deemed to be your permanent site and expenses are not allowed to this location. Multiple sites must be classed as different locations, changing the distance, journey or costs of getting to work.
The expert was Derek Kelly, chief executive of SJD Accountancy.
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