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HMRC internal manual

Employment Income Manual

HM Revenue & Customs
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Employees using own vehicles for work: qualifying and non-qualifying vehicles: company vehicle

Sections 229, 231, 235 and 236(2) ITEPA 2003

Vehicles to which the AMAPs legislation applies

The AMAPs legislation applies to the following vehicles, per section 235:

  • cars - as for car benefits (see EIM23100 onwards) except that an invalid carriage also counts as a car for the purposes of AMAPs, MAR and passenger payments
  • vans - as for van benefits (see EIM22725 from 2005/06, EIM22065 for earlier years)
  • motor cycles
  • cycles

All vehicles of those kinds are therefore “vehicles to which this Chapter applies”, section 229(1).

Company vehicles

The legislation at sections 229(4) and 231(3) goes on to prevent the AMAPs exemption or mileage allowance relief (MAR) from applying to company vehicles.

A vehicle is a company vehicle if any of the following conditions are satisfied:

  • it attracts a car (Section 120 ITEPA 2003), van (Section 154 ITEPA 2003) or general (Section 203 ITEPA 2003) benefit charge for the year
  • the vehicle is made available by reason of the employment and is not available for the employee’s private use (that is, it does not attract a benefit charge because it is only available for business travel)
  • in the case of a car or van, it is covered by the pooled cars and vans rules at Sections 167 and 168 ITEPA 2003 (see EIM23450 onwards)
  • in the case of a cycle, the employee would have been taxable on a benefit in respect of it, if the exemption described at EIM21664 had not applied.

In broad terms, what this means is that a vehicle is a company vehicle excluded from the AMAPs arrangements unless it is the employee’s own vehicle. But this goes wider than a vehicle that is directly and personally owned by the employee. The way the definition is worded means that the AMAPs and MAR rules will still apply if, for example, the employee uses his or her spouse’s car instead of his or her own car (provided of course that the spouse’s car is not itself a company vehicle).

Another way of looking at this is to determine who is making the vehicle available to whom. A company vehicle is one which is made available to the employee by reason of their employment (whether or not it is made available by the employer). By contrast, the employee makes their own vehicle available to the employer.