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25/10/2021

Tax incentive proposals for remote workers 'lacks ambition' - union official

Tax incentive proposals for remote workers 'lacks ambition' - union official

Proposed increased tax incentives towards the cost of utilities for people working from home have been labelled as "lacking ambition" by a union official. 

Laura Bambrick, head of social policy and employment affairs with the Irish Congress of Trade Unions (ICTU) said such incentives do not go far enough, amidst rising energy bills. 

She said the tax relief system for utility bills for remote works, "lacks ambition". 

"It does nothing to address the facts that the system is cumbersome to use and causes real hardship," she said. 

While working from home, you can incur extra costs including heating, electricity and broadband costs.

Under the current system, your employer can pay you a contribution towards these costs or you can make a claim for tax relief at the end of the year.

If your employer pays you a working from home allowance towards these expenses, you can get up to €3.20 per day without paying any tax, PRSI or USC on it. If your employer pays more than €3.20 per day to cover expenses, you pay tax, PRSI and USC as normal on the amount above €3.20.

However, employers are not legally obliged to make this payment to their employees.

Under the current system, remote workers can claim tax relief from Revenue on 10pc of their electricity and heating bills for days they work at home, as well as 30pc of their broadband costs.

It has been speculated that the tax relief which can be claimed on electricity and heating bills will be increased to 30pc. 

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