Update on travel expenses for self employed

HMRC Self Assessment Tax Return

An important recent case in respect of a doctor from London could have a significant impact on the travel expenses you can claim if you are self employed.


In the case of Dr Samadian v HMRC, the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) agreed with HMRC that Dr Samadian’s (S) business mileage claims from his home office to private hospitals for weekly outpatient sessions were not tax deductible. The reasoning behind this was that there was a mixed motive in the travel since it involved a return to the place where the doctor lived. S decided to appeal the FTT’s decision as he argued that the journeys from his home to the private hospitals were incurred“wholly and exclusively” for the purposes of his private practice.


The Upper Tribunal acknowledged that S’s home office was necessary for his private practice work. However, it did not accept that the home office could be treated as the starting point for calculating private practice business mileage involving habitual journeys.


How does this affect you if you are self employed? The key point in this case is that there was a regular pattern of attendance at other locations. Therefore, following the logic of this decision, travel from a home office to many different customers with no regular pattern should still be tax deductible.


The key issue in this case is that the doctor was delivering his services at another location on a regular basis. Therefore, it shouldn’t affect you if you home-based but visit many different customers with no regular pattern