PEOPLE who work from home received an average of just € 26 tax breaks last year to cover the costs of remote work.
This has led to questions about whether it is worth filing for the tax refund.
New figures show that last year earnings paid out EUR 1.1 million to 42,000 remote workers, which is EUR 26 each.
Government ministers have told anyone who can work from home to do so during the current lockdown.
Everyone who works from home is entitled to tax breaks from the Revenue Commissioners for 10 percent of their electricity and heating bills for days they work at home and 30 percent of their broadband bills.
The higher amount that can be claimed for broadband costs was a concession made in the budget last October.
The independent TD Denis Naughten, who received the numbers, said the current system of obtaining remote control relief was cumbersome.
Employees who apply for relief must send a letter from their employer to Revenue and collect all relevant utility and other bills.
To calculate the relevant electricity and heating costs, you need to calculate the allowable electricity bills and broadband and divide by the number of e-working days.
If the cost is shared between two or more people, it can be split based on the amount paid.
Tax refund specialists announced that Revenue announced in November that it would change the allowable percentage of broadband bills from 10 percent to 30 percent for allowable expenses for work from home.
Marian Ryan, excise tax manager at Taxback.com, said this would put an additional $ 20 to $ 40 a year in workers’ pockets
But that it doesn’t go far enough, she said.
“If a person works from home, they can apply for a tax break on utility costs and other expenses that may arise during their year of work.
“The process is a bit tedious as workers have to produce a letter from their employer and collect all relevant electricity and other bills. The amounts received at the end are welcome, but not very high – perhaps on average between 20 and 60 euros, depending on the employee’s salary and other factors. “
Employers can pay remote workers a tax-free allowance of € 3.20 per working day.
However, this is at the discretion of the employer.
The effects of the pandemic mean that many employers are not financially able to provide this relief for their workers.
A recent survey found that only 5 percent of remote workers employers pay the tax-free cost of € 3.20 per day.
Other surveys show that 86 percent of those who work from home believe that remote working will remain to some extent a dominant feature of their work arrangements through the end of 2021.
Most also report that their household expenses and have will increase as a result.
The sales figures show that 30 percent of PAYE taxpayers in Ireland overpaid taxes in the past year.
This means that more than 706,000 taxpayers will receive a refund this year.
According to Taxback.com, medical expenses were the most common tax breaks taxpayers requested from PAYE in 2020.
According to research by Taxback.com, older people have higher average reimbursements.
Ms. Ryan said, “In a year where many families and households have had to deal with job losses or lost income due to restrictions, every penny counts.”