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Motorcycle Clothing - an allowable expense?

Motorcycle Clothing - an allowable expense?

I have a client who is a subcontractor under CIS etc. He has a motorbike which he uses solely for work and would prefer to claim running costs and not mileage. No problem with this and as there is no private use it makes it nice and straightforward.

What about his protective clothing for the bike though? Can we claim this as an expense? There is no private use as it is all in connection with riding a bike safely.

My inclination is to allow it as it would be foolhardy to ride a bike without adequate protection and as there is no private use of the bike it follows that there is no private use of the clothing.

What do ppl think?




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04th Dec 2012 18:06

Anne Mallalieu

Interesting one !  If I remember rightly, Lady Mallalieu lost her case when claiming that her Court clothes were business only 'cos she wouldn't be seen dead in 'em outside Court. The judge said the fact that she could wear them at other times prevented her claim.

I'd think yours is a stronger case as they're more in the nature of overalls / prot. clothing. Personally, I'd agree with you and claim.

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05th Dec 2012 09:03

As a motorcyclist myself I doubt very much it is used solely for work.


Also there is no legal requirement to wear safety clothing as there is with other types of safety clothing so I cannot see this as passing the wholely and exclusively test as there is clearly a personal choice here.


Saying that.  I would love arguing this one :)

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05th Dec 2012 09:18

No, I can guarantee it is used solely for work.  We have both been riding for over 35 years.  I sold mine a few years ago and he only keeps his for work since it makes it easier to get to jobs in London.  So it's not a case of one set of bike gear for work and another for play ... Just one set used purely for work.

I guess we just got too old to enjoy riding anymore ... enjoying the creature comforts too much these days :)

Actually I seem to recall insurance companies reducing payouts when appropriate clothing was not worn.  If that is true it would lend weight to the argument.

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By MissMel
22nd Jun 2013 16:02

extra question

Hi I have a Sub contractor who has a motorbike, he is the other way around to above situation, as in; he bought a bike for himself but as it is his only means of transport (he is only 19 and hasn't taken any driving lessons) he also uses it for work.


He has bought safety clothing (more than just basic stuff) and a helmet (legal requirement) I wasn't going to allow any, but then I thought well he bought the clothing when he bought the bike so could it all be treated as CA? he always wears the clothing when he is riding - takes it off on site and puts it on again to ride home.


He only does about 25% business use so as motorcycles are allowed to be treated as Plant & Machinery - could I allow him 18% WDA per year on bike cost (and possibly clothing as asked above) less personal use? 

He is due a refund as he paid CIS on all earnings this year, but is picking up bits of private work so may have to pay tax next year.

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