A self employed electrician (Paul Mellor) worked at various locations. He travelled to the sites by car and claimed motor expenses for the journeys. HMRC disallowed the claim, arguing that, although he did some work at home, it was not where he carried out his trade as an electrician, and so his travelling costs would not be allowable as they were not incurred wholly and exclusively for the purpose of his trade. Mr Mellor appealed to the Tax Tribunal.
Mr Mellor stated that his home was also his work base, so the travel was wholly and exclusively for the purpose of his business. He had no other office, all his business records were kept at home, all correspondence was sent to that address, and he kept some tools and equipment there.
The First-Tier Tribunal decided that a subcontractor like Mr Mellor had to have a base for his business. Organising his work was part and parcel of being a subcontractor and the administration was part of his trading activity. He carried out the administrative part of his trade from his home; therefore his business base was his home.
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