How to Claim for COVID-19 Face Masks when Filing your 2020 Tax Assessment
If you are filing your 2020 tax assessment in Finland, it is good to know that you can claim for the costs of face masks used to protect you from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Here is the relevant information from the vero.fi website, maintained by the Finnish Tax Authority
Can I claim a deduction for masks that I have bought myself?
I wear a face mask in public transport during my commute
If you wear a face mask in public transport during your commute and you purchase the masks yourself, you can deduct the cost of the masks in your taxation as travel expenses. The deduction amount is €2 for each day during which you have travelled between your home and work after 13 August 2020, when the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare issued their recommendation for wearing masks in public transport. The personal liability threshold for commuting expenses is €750. If your expenses go over this threshold, report the entire amount of expenses. Do not subtract the threshold amount.
Paid by employer – how is the tax assessed?
Can an employer provide masks to employees exempt from tax?
The employer can provide employees with protective equipment for work purposes exempt from tax to prevent the spread of infectious disease. Face masks and other protective equipment can be considered part of preventative health care provided by the employer. This means that the masks are tax-exempt to the employer even if the employees also use them outside work, for example during commutes. However, the employer cannot provide their employees’ family members with masks exempt from tax.
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