Martin Lewis explains how self-isolating Brits can claim extra £125 if 'pinged' by the NHS app – how to claim

MILLIONS of Brits forced to self-isolate because of coronavirus can claim £125, Martin Lewis has said.

Workers can get the money if they are "pinged" by the NHS Covid app and can't go to their workplace.

Anyone who has been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace, or is self-isolating after being pinged by the NHS app can make a claim, Martin Lewis has explained.

In his Money Saving Expert newsletter Martin said that HMRC has confirmed to him that claims can be made in these circumstances – not just when your employer tells you to work from home.

The rules of the scheme say anyone who is required to work from home by their employer can claim tax back of up to £125 a year.

The cash is to help cover the expense of working form home, such as higher energy bills from being home in the day.

The confirmation by HMRC expands the scheme out to workers who have no other option than working from home, but have not been explicitly told by their employer.

We've asked HMRC for comment and will update when we hear back.

It comes as record numbers of workers are being "pinged" by the Covid app and forced to self-isolate.

Pubs, shops and restaurants have had to close their doors due to staff shortages caused by the so-called "pingdemic".

Postal services and meat supplies are also under threat.

Millions of Brits working from home can claim up to £125 per year to cover expenses when working from home.

How can I claim tax back when working from home?

Claims for tax back can be made by anyone who pays tax and has to work from home – even if it's just for a single day – and it's worth £125 a year.

Claims can also be made for the previous tax year, also worth up to £125, so anyone who's eligible for both years and hasn't yet claimed can get £250.

HMRC will, in fact, accept backdated claims for up to four years which means in total you could claim up to £500.

Under the scheme, your tax code is adjusted so you're not paying as much tax.

Claims for last year and any previous years are paid as one lump sum in your salary.

The government has created a handy online tool to help you get the working from home tax back.

The online service is easy to use and takes just a few minutes to make a claim.

Who is eligible to claim tax back when working from home?

If you have worked from home, even if for just one day, you can claim the tax back.

Your employer must have required it, or asked you to work from home for you to be able to claim.

And now, if you are pinged and must self-isolate, you can claim too.

You can't make a claim if it's something you've decided yourself.

To be eligible, you will also have to have seen your household costs rise because of working from home.

This could be because you've had the lights or heating on more because you're inside for longer, or you've used more internet than usual.

Generally the bills will count as an increased cost, as if you were at work in the office, you would not have been using them regularly.

But you won't be able to claim the tax back if your employer is covering your working from home expenses already.

You also can't claim if you're self-employed – since you work for yourself you can claim expenses on your tax return.

How much can tax can I claim back when working from home?

Your employer can effectively pay you £6 a week extra tax-free to cover expenses.

But with many firms struggling right now, it's more likely you'll instead claim tax relief on this £6 a week.

If you claim the tax relief, the exact reduction to your tax bill depends on your tax rate and it's the highest rate of tax you pay that's used.

For those paying the standard tax rate of 20%, you would get £1.20 a week in tax relief.

While for people who pay tax at the higher rate of 40%, you'd get £2.40 a week.

Additional rate tax payers who pay 45% will get £2.70 a week.

So claim for the entire tax year, that's tax relief of £62.40 for basic rate taxpayers, £124.80 for higher rate tax payers, and £140.40 for additional rate tax payers.

How do I submit my tax back claim for working from home?

HMRC has an online tool to help you submit a claim for the current tax year and previous years too.

Once the application has been approved and processed, your tax code for the 2021 to 2022 tax year will be adjusted automatically.

You will then see the tax relief directly through your salary, and will continue to receive the adjustment until April 5, 2022.

You won't get a one off payment when claiming for this year, instead it will be included as part of your weekly or monthly payments from your employer.

But for claims for last year and any previous years, you'll get the money as a lump sum through your salary.

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