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HMRC internal manual

Employment Income Manual

Tax treatment of National Health Service employees: expenses payments and allowances: general

The guidance in this page and the following pages deals with the taxation treatment of certain expenses payments and allowances made to their employees by the National Health Service employing bodies. They resulted from discussions some years ago with the Department of Health and Social Security (in Northern Ireland, the Department of Health and Social Services) and the staff side of that Department.

Since the discussions took place there have been several changes in the structure of the National Health Service, including the introduction of NHS trusts and the setting up of a separate Department of Health. Accordingly, the information set out in these pages about particular types of payments and allowances does not necessarily apply across the board in the National Health Service, although the underlying principles are of general application. So, when dealing with any individual National Health Service employer you should establish whether or not payments are made in accordance with the centrally determined rules. In practice it seems that many NHS trusts do pay at the centrally determined rates, but this cannot be taken for granted.

The various expenses payments and allowances referred to are not necessarily a comprehensive list of all such payments which might be made. Again, this is something that can only be established by finding out about the payments system operated by any individual National Health Service employer.