Claim tax relief if you wear a uniform for work

Read our guide to making a claim.

If you wear a uniform for work, you may be able to get tax relief if you spend money to clean, repair or replace it.

Some forces, such as the Met, will claim the expenses for you, but if your force doesn't, it's easy enough to sort out for yourself. Once you've registered, you'll be taxed less in future too.

You can get tax relief on the cost of repairing, cleaning or replacing your uniform if:

  • It's a recognisable uniform
  • You're required to wear it while you're working
  • You've got to pay for it yourself.

You can even go back several years to claim the tax relief, if you've been wearing the uniform all that time. However, if you want to claim for the tax year ending 5 April 2010, you must claim before 5 April 2014.

How much could I get back?

Police Officers (up to and including Chief Inspectors) and PCSOs qualify for the maximum 'flat rate' of £140. Other Police employees who are responsible for cleaning their own uniforms may qualify for the £60 deduction.

To work out the value of the deduction, you'll need to know the rate of tax you pay. You'll get tax relief on the flat rate expense at the highest rate of tax you pay, either at basic rate (20 per cent), higher rate (40 per cent) or additional rate (50 per cent).

Example: If you're a PC and pay basic rate tax, you can expect the following reduction in your tax bill:

(£140 x 20%) = £28 for each year you claim for

How do I claim?

If you're claiming for the first time, you should provide your details to HMRC in writing and fill in form P87.

You'll need to include the following:

  • The name and address of your force
  • Your job title
  • What expenses you're claiming for, such as the costs of laundering your uniform
  • Details of any laundry or cleaning services provided by your force
  • Details of payment or vouchers provided by your force to cover laundry or other costs
  • Whether you want the rebate to be deducted from the current year's tax or you would like a cheque.

We've created an example letter which you might find helpful if you're claiming.  

To find out more, read 'How to get allowances and reliefs - employees or directors'