Technology has advanced over years, meaning more of us are now sitting behind computer screens for much of our working week. The use of computer screens often leads to the wearing of glasses. It may have left you wondering whether can you claim the cost of an eye test through your limited company? Watch our video for some guidance.

Whilst running a business, you will come across items that are eligible for tax relief against your income or Corporation Tax, but only in cases where they are wholly and exclusively for the purpose of the business.

If any of your expenses have a duality of purpose then unfortunately, you cannot reclaim it.  The view is that you would have incurred this cost anyway. Therefore, it would be unfair to allow you to claim the relief on this item.

WHAT ARE THE RULES?

HMRC are very clear on the rules around eye-related expenses. You can claim the cost of an eyesight test, and even any corrective glasses. There are conditions to this:

  • Corrective glasses are made generally available to all employees; and
  • The eye test is required under Health and Safety at Work regulations.

 

Your employer (in this case would be you) has a legal obligation to protect your eyesight. If you are working on screens for most of your time, claiming the cost of an eye test should be allowable.

Similarly, corrective glasses are to be used wholly for business reasons. If they are used solely for the business, you will be able to claim the cost as an allowable business expense.  It’s vital that the prescription states that the glasses are needed specifically for screen-related activities.

With glasses that are required for general use as well as VDU use, HMRC allows this purchase, but you will only be able to claim for the business proportion of the cost as an allowable expense.

WHERE WOULD THE EXPENSE NOT BE ALLOWABLE?

If you need glasses in general, without specific VDU requirements, then the cost of the glasses would be classed as a benefit in kind and there will be tax and National Insurance on the cost of these glasses.

The easiest way to decide if you should be claiming your glasses, is to understand if you need them wholly and exclusively for business use, or if your prescription states they are required for VDU use. If this case you can claim tax relief.

I hope that’s useful.

If you’d like to know any more, please get in touch with us.