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Monday, 20 April 2020

What is from a tax point of view the best way to accommodate my employees in view of their telework / working from home?

Employers can grant a temporary home working allowance to their employees as long the “COVID-19 measures” are in force (currently until 3 May 2020).

A monthly allowance up to 129,48 EUR can be granted free from personal income tax and social security contributions. Every employee working from home can benefit from this allowance, regardless of their position.

Some employers may also want to reimburse additional expenses made by their employees relating to their home office.

For social security purposes, the exempt home working allowance is considered to cover utility expenses such as heating and electricity, small office supplies, etc. Other expenses incurred by the employee such as the use or the purchase of a computer screen, a scanner, use of own mobile phone, etc. can be reimbursed on top of the allowance, free from social security.

From a tax perspective, it is yet unclear as to whether e.g. the purchase of an office chair, monitor, scanner, etc., can be reimbursed tax-free on top of the amount of 129,48 EUR as a cost proper to the employer.

However, important to know is that the professional use of private internet connection or personal computer is not included in the lump sum allowance. To cover these expenses, a lump sum reimbursement of 20 EUR per month per type of expense is accepted as a cost proper to the employer.