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Royal College of Nursing

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									Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                           Members and Volunteers




                Expenses Guidance
        For Office Holders, Members and
                   Volunteers




                                                              Revised July 2008
Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                           Members and Volunteers




                               Contents


            1.     Introduction

            2.     Principles

            3.     General Rules

            4.     Tax and national insurance
                   (And who it affects)

            5.     Authorisation framework

            6.     Claimable expenses
            7.     Claiming process




                                                              Revised July 2008
 Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                            Members and Volunteers


1.           Introduction

1.1          Purpose

1.1.1        The purpose of this document is to provide detailed guidance to allow
             claimants to adhere to the spirit of the RCN Expenses Policy. The
             document will:

             i)     outline the principles and rules that should be considered in order to
                    determine whether an expense may be claimed;
             ii)    detail the tax and national insurance treatment, where appropriate;
             iii)   specify processes to be followed


1.2          Who does it cover?

1.2.1        The policy covers the following groups of claimants:

             Category                   Accountable Officer           Booking Team
         Council members               Director of Governance           Governance
                                               Support
     National and regional board     Country/Regional Directors            Board
              members
   National Committees for                  Head of ERD                     ERD
     Stewards, Learning
 Representatives and Health &
   Safety Representatives
               Forums                       Head of PND                     PND
 Activists (Stewards, Learning          Country and Regional               Board
 Representatives and Health &                Directors
   Safety Representatives)
             Branches                 Elected Branch Officials              N/A
         External Advisers             Director of Governance           Governance
                                               Support


1.3          Terminology

1.3.1        Except where specified the content applies equally to all of the groups
             outlined in 1.2.1 who are referred to as „claimants‟.

1.3.2        “Office Holders” are all members who hold an elected or appointed
             position.

1.3.3        Except where specified any reference to tax will refer to both income tax
             and national insurance.

1.3.4        Income tax will generally be referred to as tax, National Insurance as NI
             and HM Revenue & Customs as HMRC.




                                             1
 Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                            Members and Volunteers


2.        Principles


2.1       Where available, members should make their travel/accommodation
          bookings through the staff administration arrangements that are in place
          for that RCN activity. (See 1.2.1)

2.2       The RCN will reimburse expenses that have been wholly, necessarily and
          exclusively incurred whilst engaged in authorised activity on its behalf.

2.3       All expenses detailed are allowable for tax purposes unless specified.

2.4       The responsibility lies with the claimant to seek authorisation prior to
          incurring any cost if they have any uncertainty that it is allowable.

2.5       Any activity that is claimed for, assuming that it complies with 2.2, should
          be carried out in such a way as to minimise the cost accepting that :

          i)    the claimant‟s health and safety should not be compromised in any
                way;
          ii)   Factors such as inconvenience to the claimant or personal
                circumstances, e.g. disability may be taken into account.

2.6       The authorisation of claims is set out in section 5.

2.7       Expenses claimed should relate directly to the cost incurred. The addition
          of general charges over and above the actual cost is not permitted.

2.8       The RCN may refuse to meet any expenses that are considered
          unreasonable or which could have been avoided had the journey been
          better planned.

2.9       No IT equipment, mobile telephones, PDA or their equivalents may be
          purchased through the expenses system. IT equipment, mobile
          telephones or PDA or their equivalents can only be purchased by the
          RCN Systems department.

2.10      Equipment will only be provided to members on a case-by-case basis,
          where there is evidence of need and for the purposes of carrying out their
          role in the RCN.

2.11      Corporate credit cards will only be provided to members on an
          exceptional case-by-case basis, where there is evidence of need. This will
          be rare. Members with an RCN corporate card will be held accountable
          for use of any card issued to them.

2.12      Where these principles and guidance are not followed, the RCN reserves
          the right to reject or reduce expenses that are claimed




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 Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                            Members and Volunteers

3.        General Rules

3.1       The RCN respects the integrity of each claimant and expects expense
          claims to be completed both honestly and accurately.

3.2      Any attempt to falsify an expense claim will be considered to be gross
         misconduct and appropriate action will be taken against the claimant,
         which in serious cases will lead to the involvement of the Police. Where,
         with reasonable care, the authorising signatory should have recognised
         the fraudulent nature of the claim, then action may be taken against them
         as well.

3.3       Expenses should be claimed using the paper-based expense method
          using the approved expenses claim form (Appendix C). Claim forms not
          completed properly and legibly, those which include items outside of the
          policy or are not properly authorised will not be paid and will be returned
          to the claimant for corrective action.

3.4       Claimants must sign their own expense claim form. This responsibility
          cannot be delegated to someone else.

3.5       Expenses must not be paid through petty cash accounts/floats.

3.6       VAT receipts should be provided in all cases. Failure to provide a
          legitimate receipt may invalidate the claim. If no receipt is available then a
          written explanation should be attached to the claim.

3.7       Reimbursement of expenses is subject to the RCN‟s authorisation
        process.

3.8       Any expense claim that is not authorised will be the responsibility of the
          claimant i.e. unauthorised claims will, by default, become the
          responsibility of the person incurring them.

3.9       Payments will be made directly to the claimant‟s bank account by BACS.

3.10      Claims should be submitted on a monthly basis and no later than by the
          end of the month following the month in which the expense was incurred.

3.11      Claimants who miss the claiming deadline by more than one month will be
          advised of the possibility of loss of future claims. Once a claimant has
          received two such notices regarding late submission of claims, future late
          claims may be reduced by 50%. Any claim more than 3 months late,
          without good reason, may be refused if the claimant has received two
          such notices about late claims. Unless in exceptional circumstances, no
          claim made more than 4 months after the month in which the expense
          was incurred will be reimbursed.




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 Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                            Members and Volunteers

4.        Tax And National Insurance (And Who It Affects)

4.1       Summary

4.1.1     The PAYE and National Insurance regulations apply to employees and
          office holders. Council members and National/Regional Board members
          are office holders and are, therefore, deemed to be covered by PAYE and
          National Insurance regulations.

4.1.2     HMRC begins with a presumption that all payments are subject to tax and
          NI.

          Tax and NI may not be payable if:

          i)     A statutory or concessionary exemption exists;
          ii)    A dispensation has been agreed by the HMRC;
          iii)   The expense is wholly allowable for tax purposes;
          iv)    A PAYE (Pay As You Earn) settlement has been agreed by the
                 RCN.

4.1.3     Office holders, because they fall under the regulations, should be treated
          in the same way as staff, in all matters relating to tax and NI.

4.1.4     An expense is only allowable for business purposes if it is claimed in
          accordance with policy, supported by a receipt if applicable and the
          purpose of the expense is explained (i.e. the nature of the meeting and
          the individuals involved).

4.1.5     If a payment is made that is taxable then that benefit must be declared on
          a P11D issued for the claimant at the end of the tax year (5th April). This
          will result in the claimant being charged tax on the benefit, either through
          their tax assessment or by having their tax code adjusted.

4.2       Office Holders

4.2.1     Office holders, because they fall under the PAYE and NI regulations, are
          treated by HMRC as though they were employees. Potentially they are
          liable to tax and NI on any expenses not covered by 4.1.3. These might
          include the following :
          i)    travel
          ii)   accommodation
          iii) subsistence
          iv) other expenses

4.2.2     Travel

          Normally reimbursement of the cost of travel to and from home and a
          normal place of work is taxable. For example this could mean Council
          Members, who might be construed as having their normal place of work at
          20 Cavendish Square, could potentially be taxable on any of their normal
          travel expenses to and from their home and HQ.




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Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                           Members and Volunteers

         However an exemption currently exists (extra statutory concession A4) for
         office holders who are not rewarded and consequently their travel
         expenses are not taxable.

         Reward, however, covers a much wider field than just salaries. Any
         expense not directly related to the office holders‟ duties could be taken to
         be a reward by HMRC who would then disallow the exemption for that
         individual. All expenses payable under this policy must therefore be
         directly related to the office holders‟ duties.




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 Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                            Members and Volunteers

5.        Authorisation framework

5.1       Member expenses should normally be authorised by the cost centre
          manager where the cost is to be charged. The broad categories are set
          out in the table at 1.2.1. If this is not possible then the line manager of the
          normal authoriser should do so in the first instance or the relevant Director
          in the last resort.

5.2       All members of staff who are approved to authorise expense claims will
          be given an expenditure limit up to which they are able to sign. Claims
          above the authorised level must be signed by a more senior member of
          staff who has an authority to authorise at the necessary level, as
          described in the authorisation policy (see Financial Standing Orders)

5.3       No one is able to authorise their own expenses. This includes cost that
          may be paid for directly by the RCN through the RCN‟s authorised travel
          management company, FCm Travel Solutions and any RCN provided
          Mobile Telephone invoice provided through the RCN‟s mobile telephone
          provider.

5.4       The member of staff authorising the expense claim is responsible for
          satisfying themselves that the appropriate policies/claim rates etc. have
          been adhered to and must approve the form accordingly.

5.5       All Council members should submit their expense claims to the
          Governance Support Department who will authorise the claims. The Chair
          of Council‟s expenses will be authorised by the Honorary Treasurer (Chair
          of the Finance Committee).

5.6       In the event of a dispute regarding a claim, a decision will be taken by the
          relevant Committee or Board panel comprising Chair, Secretary and
          another Committee/Board member.




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 Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                            Members and Volunteers


6.        Claimable Expenses


6.1.      Travel - General

6.1.1.    The justification for travel must be considered, taking into account the
          principles set out in Section 2. If the travel is to another RCN site then:
           the meeting must be more than 2 hours long: or
           the traveller must be the chair or a presenter at the meeting; or
           a sensitive matter is being dealt with that requires attendance

          Otherwise teleconferencing/videoconferencing must be considered an
          appropriate alternative way to participate.

6.1.2.    Wherever possible, all meetings at RCN premises where participants will
          be required to travel, must not start before 11am and must end before
          4pm. In these cases the expectation is that overnight accommodation
          should not be claimed.

6.1.3.    Travel arrangements must be booked in an economical way by:

          i)  Planning travel well in advance wherever possible – to ensure the best
              prices are obtained;
          ii) Planning travel with as much certainty as possible – „open‟ tickets are
              expensive and should be avoided. Cancellation charges for whatever
              reason are expensive and wasteful;

6.1.4.    The expected mode of travel is public transport, unless it can be
          demonstrated that this is not cost effective.

6.1.5.    The cost of seat reservations for any mode of travel may be reimbursed
          where justified.

6.1.6.    Reasons must be given for any cancellation charges included in a claim
          and such charges may not be paid in all cases.

6.1.7.    The use of motorcycle or bicycle for official journeys can be claimed at the
          appropriate rate (Appendix B). The relevant provisions of section 6.2 will
          apply to the use of such vehicles for RCN business journeys, including
          roadworthiness, driving proficiency and insurance.


6.2.      Private Car

6.2.1.    Use of private car should be agreed in advance with the authoriser
          wherever possible and the cost benefit approved. As a guide, use of a
          private car for a journey of more than 150 miles (round trip) could be
          considered exceptional.

6.2.2.    Claimants using their own vehicles on RCN business must hold a current
          driving licence, have the necessary insurance and the vehicle must be
          roadworthy.




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 Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                            Members and Volunteers

6.2.3.    Travel should be by the most direct route although reasonable variation
          will be permitted to avoid traffic congestion or roadworks.

6.2.4.    Claimants using their own vehicles may claim the prevailing mileage
          allowance rate (see Appendix B). The running costs of the vehicle are
          taken account of in the mileage rate paid (e.g. repairs, maintenance,
          replacement tyres or windows, insurance and excesses)

6.2.5.    If parking costs need to be incurred then the least cost option should be
          used and then claimed.

6.2.6.    Speeding and parking infringement fines will not be reimbursed.

6.2.7.    Congestion or toll charges may be claimed if car travel in the designated
          area is unavoidable in the fulfilment of RCN business. Fines for non
          payment of the congestion charge will not be reimbursed.

6.2.8.    The RCN does not accept liability for damage caused to or loss of private
          vehicles or their contents whilst being used on RCN business; nor does it
          accept liability for claims by passengers or third parties. Nor will the RCN
          reimburse for the loss of no-claims discounts or insurance excesses.

6.2.9.    A passenger business mile rate (Appendix B) may be claimed for carrying
          fellow potential claimants in a car or van on journeys which are also work
          journeys for them. Where a passenger is carried, the name of the
          passenger must be noted on the expense claim form.

6.3       Train/Tube

6.3.1.    The expected class of travel by rail is standard class, taking full
          advantage of economy/promotional fares when possible.

6.3.2.    Travel that is covered by any season ticket held by the claimant may not
          be claimed.

6.3.3.    Advantage must be taken of any fare reduction or discount for which the
          claimant is eligible.

6.3.4.    Oyster cards - Prepaid Oyster card charges will be reimbursed where
          supported by a statement obtained from London Underground of the
          journey taken. Statements may be obtained from the ticket office for the
          last 8 journeys made. Statements for journeys prior to this and made
          within the last 8 weeks can be obtained by emailing Transport for London

6.3.5.    Is first class travel ever justified?

          The only circumstances where first class travel will be reimbursed are as
          follows:

          i)    Standard travel is either not available or the cost of any alternative is
                greater;
          ii)   Standard travel is only available in a form that would impose an
                unreasonable level of discomfort on the claimant e.g. having to
                stand on a long train journey (more than 1 hour duration);



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 Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                            Members and Volunteers

          (Note - Authorisation for first class travel should be obtained beforehand.
          The reason for first class travel must be made clear on the expense claim
          form. Reimbursement will be restricted to the standard class fare if the
          approval authority does not accept the reasons why first class travel was
          undertaken.)

6.3.6.    Who should benefit from any refunds resulting from service failure on
          public transport?

          If the RCN is reimbursing the cost of the journey then any refunds belong
          to the RCN.

6.3.7.    Can costs be apportioned if business and personal travel are combined?

          A claimant may benefit personally from a business journey if they use part
          of the time for personal benefit (e.g. to visit relatives) then the individual
          must inform their claim authoriser and the RCN will reimburse the lowest
          cost of the journey if it had been a business journey alone. This rule also
          applies where transporting family and friends.

          Example

          If a claimant travels 200 miles using their own vehicle in order to facilitate
          a personal visit but could have travelled by public transport if making the
          business journey alone, then the expense claim should be the lower of the
          train fare, plus any other related costs such as taxi fares, and the 200
          miles at the prevailing mileage rate

6.4      Taxis

6.4.1.    The normal expectation is that public transport will be used in all
          instances, particularly in Central London. The use of taxis must be
          exceptional and will not normally be reimbursed.        However it is
          acknowledged that there will be instances when taxi use is appropriate.
          These instances may include:

          i)      use of public transport is not possible, for example due to a
                  disability;
          ii)     unavailability of public transport;
          iii)    emergencies;
          iv)     a shared taxi being cheaper than public transport;
          v)      cost benefit of time saved (nb: taxis are not always quicker than
                  public transport);
          vi)     late night situations;
          vii)    where transportation of luggage/equipment is involved;
          viii)   where parking costs for private car would exceed taxi costs (eg
                  airport parking)

6.4.2.    Tips included with taxi fares can be included on an expense claim if a
          supporting receipt is submitted, but must be reasonable and in line with
          local practice.

6.4.3.    Taxi expenses must always be supported by a receipt and full explanation
          outlining the business reason must be provided by the claimant to support



                                          9
 Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                            Members and Volunteers

          any expense claim for use of taxis. This must be considered fully by the
          authoriser of the claim.



6.5       Air Travel

6.5.1.    RCN members may in the course of RCN business be required to fly to
          attend meetings or undertake visits on behalf of other members.

6.5.2.    Domestic travel by air (including Eire) instead of rail travel may be allowed
          in cases where the air fare plus other expenses to reach the intended
          destination are lower than or essentially the equivalent of the cost of the
          train fare and other expenses claimed. In exceptional cases, air travel
          costs higher than the equivalent train fare may be allowed provided that
          the time saved or the inconvenience avoided can be justified to the
          person authorising the expense.

6.5.3.    All international and European air travel must be authorised prior to
          booking. Approval is strictly along the following lines:

          i)    For all Board members by their UKET Board Directors;
          ii)   All Council member travel to international events to be authorised by
                the Council Executive Team;

6.5.4.    Flights within the United Kingdom should only be booked with low cost
          carriers except where no low cost airline uses a particular airport (as
          some carriers do not offer flights to/from relevant destinations or at
          suitable times) or in the case of emergency where no other carrier has
          available seats.

6.5.5.    Travel (internal and international) should be at the cheapest available fare
          consistent with the travel requirements i.e. economy class, using any
          benefits of advance booking (e.g. apex fares), reliability of the airline
          concerned, waiting time and the balance between a low cost (non-
          changeable, non-refundable) ticket and a more expensive flexible option).

6.5.6.    The cost of flight increases as the date of travel approaches. In order to
          ensure value for money, flights should be booked well in advance as is
          practicable. Members of staff arranging meetings must take into account
          the requirement of members who have to fly to attend the proposed
          meeting.

6.5.7.    Members wishing to travel at short notice must seek the relevant approval
          (see paragraph 6.5.3)

6.5.8.    Business Class seats can only be used where specific agreement has
          been reached with the Chair of Council (or General Secretary/Chief
          Executive in their absence) in advance of booking the trip.

6.5.9.    Business Class can only be used where the travel is externally funded
          and the cost has been built into the contract with the funding organisation.
          Evidence of the agreed funding must be provided at the point of seeking
          approval of the travel. If it has not been built into the contract, a letter



                                         10
 Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                            Members and Volunteers

          from the organisation funding the contract would need to be obtained
          confirming that the cost of such travel would be chargeable to the
          organisation, at the time of booking the ticket (evidence of this would need
          to be provided as part of obtaining the agreement of the Chair of Council
          or General Secretary/Chief Executive).

6.5.10.   First Class or upgrades to First Class by sponsoring organisation is not
          acceptable.

6.5.11.   However, should the airline offer a free upgrade to First Class, or the
          individual decide to personally fund the cost of the upgrade, this would be
          acceptable.

6.5.12.   Should the airline offer a free upgrade, for any reason, this should be
          reported as if the individual is in receipt of a gift. It is also recommended
          that where an individual decides to personally fund the upgrade to First
          Class, that they report this as part of the expenses claim, after the trip, as
          a nil cost.

6.5.13.   Should the upgrade be decided upon on the day of travel, retrospective
          approval would need to be obtained.

6.5.14.   Frequent travellers must be aware that Air Miles are a taxable benefit and
          should only redeemed in a manner which benefits the RCN (i.e. in
          reduced future flights) and not personally.

6.5.15.   Excess Baggage

          Excess Baggage caused by the necessity of taking items for business
          reasons must be authorised by the RCN.

6.5.16.   Lost Luggage

          Losses in airports or in transit must be immediately reported to local
          authorities and documentation evidencing this must be obtained. Local
          authorities must be pressed for action.

6.5.17.   Cancelled or Unused tickets

          Travellers must return tickets immediately to ensure a credit is issued,
          where the ticket allows.

6.6       Subsistence

6.6.1.    The cost of breakfast, up to the approved rate (see Appendix B), will be
          re-imbursed if :

          i)    the cost of breakfast is not included in the rate charged for overnight
                accommodation; or
          ii)   if it is necessary for the claimant to be commencing their journey
                from home on any RCN business before 7.00am

6.6.2.    Office holders, members and volunteers may claim the cost of lunch, up
          to the approved rate, and this will be re-imbursed if :



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 Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                            Members and Volunteers

          i)     the claimant is occupied on RCN business for more than 4 hours in
                 any one day and
          ii)    lunch is not otherwise available (example – as part of a training
                 course)

6.6.3.    The cost of dinner, up to the approved rate, will be re-imbursed if :

          i)     the claimant is away from home on RCN business after 8pm

6.6.4.    Meetings that begin before 12.15pm and end after 1.45pm may have
          lunch provided by means of the facilities that are generally available i.e.
          subsistence is not claimable on expenses.

6.6.5.    Alcohol cannot be claimed as part of a normal subsistence claim.

6.6.6.    Exceptions to 6.11.5 may be made in some cases, particularly regarding
          formal RCN events. The level of expenditure must remain reasonable and
          must have prior authorisation from Chair of Council, General
          Secretary/Chief Executive or UKET Board Director.


6.7        Accommodation

6.7.1.    Justification of the need for accommodation should accompany any claim.
          Reasons for accommodation would include :

          i)     Departure from home or arrival back at home would otherwise be at
                 an unreasonable time i.e. before 6am or after 10pm
          ii)    Consecutive days attendance at a site and where extra daily
                 travelling time would be greater than 60 minutes each way (or where
                 the cost of travelling exceeds the cost of accommodation)
          iii)   Where the performance of duties would be significantly impaired if
                 accommodation were not available
          iv)    Where the overall cost of having accommodation provided is less
                 than any alternative which enables the claimant to properly fulfil their
                 duties
          v)     Where there is a demonstrable health and safety issue

6.7.2.    If the claimant has incurred any additional costs that are not allowable
          expenses these cannot be claimed. Allowable additional costs can be
          claimed in the normal way. Costs that will not be reimbursed are for
          example alcohol, mini-bar and hire of films or costs in excess of the
          expense limits in force (see Appendix B). Please note that these are
          examples and are not a comprehensive list.

6.7.3.    Maximum limits for a single room with bed & breakfast are set out in
          Appendix B. These are subject to availability of such accommodation. If
          anyone not on RCN business shares a room with the claimant any
          additional costs must be borne by the claimant.

6.7.4.    If a claimant chooses to stay with a friend or relative, rather than in a
          hotel, then a gift or meal may be given to the host (for maximum see
          Appendix B). A receipt for the gift/meal is required.




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 Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                            Members and Volunteers

6.7.5.    Any claimant staying away from home is entitled, within the space of 24
          hours, phone calls home up to the financial limit specified in Appendix B
          when supported by itemised bills.


6.8       Telephones

6.8.1.    Phone calls made in the course of RCN business must always be made in
          the most cost effective way that is reasonably available.

6.8.2.    The cost of calls on privately owned phones/mobiles, made in the course
          of authorised RCN business, can only be claimed at the rate at which they
          were billed by submitting an itemised bill marked showing the business
          calls or by providing details of the call (date, time and duration) and proof
          of the tariff applying. Claims without a supporting itemised call record and
          associated explanation will not be accepted for reimbursement.

6.8.3.    RCN mobile phones may be provided to members on a case-by-case
          basis, according to need and only to activists who have paid time in their
          employing organisation. The activist must submit itemised call records
          and the RCN reserves the right to withdraw the phone at any time. Misuse
          of an RCN mobile phone will lead to proceedings under the RCN
          disciplinary policy.

6.8.4.    Mobile phone rentals are not reclaimable.

6.8.5.    Home telephone rental, unless previously approved and wholly and
          exclusively used for RCN business, is not claimable.

6.8.6.    Authorisation of a telephone line at home will be considered in line with
          the RCN‟s policy on the allocation of IT and communication equipment.
          The business line must not be used for personal calls. Any personal call
          on an RCN provided business line will immediately make the rental of the
          line a taxable benefit.

6.8.7.    Pay-as-you-go mobile phone top-up cards

          When personal pay-as-you-go mobiles are used it is impossible to
          ascertain the degree of business usage in the absence of itemised billing.
          When top-up vouchers or receipts are reimbursed, these will be reported
          to HM Revenue and Customs as part of the P11D year end process as
          taxable benefits to the claimants. Claimants are therefore required to
          obtain their own personal tax relief themselves by writing to HMRC.




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 Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                            Members and Volunteers


6.9        Entertaining

6.9.1      Business Entertaining

6.9.1. 1   Business entertaining is the provision of food and drink to third parties, by
           staff and/or office holders, and is not a taxable benefit for those staff
           and/or office holders who also receive the provision incidentally.

6.9.1. 2   All business entertaining should be approved in advance by the
           authoriser.

6.9.1. 3   Claims for business entertaining must include details of the third parties
           being entertained and the reason(s) for the entertainment being provided.

6.9.1. 4   Members, including stewards, learning and safety representatives but not
           office holders, are considered to be third parties for the purpose of
           entertaining. Members claiming their own expenses should adhere to the
           subsistence limits.

6.9.1. 5   The cost of alcohol cannot be claimed as part of business entertaining
           unless part of a meal.

6.9.1. 6   Business entertaining requires a business motive and this must be
           recorded on the claim. Also there is a test of reasonableness in relation to
           the mix of staff/office holders and third parties. As a rule of thumb if less
           than 25% of those involved are in the third party category then the event
           ceases to be business entertainment. If claimants are in any doubt they
           should seek guidance in advance of the event from the Chair of Council,
           General Secretary/Chief Executive or UKET Director.

6.9.1. 7   The RCN reserves the right to reject or reduce expenses that are claimed,
           but considered to be excessive

6.10       Gifts

6.10.1.    As a general rule the RCN providing gifts to office holders is not
           permitted. This includes flowers, chocolates and alcohol. The ge neral
           exception is the sending of flowers in the case of serious illness or in the
           event of the death of a member. Any other exception must be agreed, in
           advance, by the Chair of Council, General Secretary/Chief Executive or
           UKET Director.

6.11       Other

           Childcare, other dependent care and pet care

6.11.1.    Indirect costs are payable to office holders but not members and only if
           the following conditions are met:

           i)      the RCN requires the member to carry out an activity that directly
                   gives rise to the cost (e.g chairing a committee or meeting, but not
                   for attendance at Congress).
           ii)     that no lower cost/cost free alternative is available


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 Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                            Members and Volunteers

          iii)   that the need is unavoidable and not simply an issue of convenience
          iv)    that the payment cannot be made to the partner of the claimant, a
                 close family member or any other responsible adult who might
                 normally reside at the same address as the claimant

6.11.2.   The cost of childcare must be agreed beforehand with the relevant claim
          authoriser.

6.11.3.   A receipt needs to be provided by the carer for their fee.

6.11.4.   Pet care is not payable.

6.11.5.   Provision of clothes hire is not permitted under the policy (see also 6.6.6).




                                         15
    Appendix A – Detailed Guide to Claiming Expenses in the RCN for Office Holders,
                               Members and Volunteers



7            Claiming Process

7.1          Manual Expense Claims

7.1.1.       Claims should be made on the appropriate form (see Appendix C). There
             is only one form. The status of the claimant, i.e. Council member, Board
             member, steward, health & safety representative, member, should be
             recorded on the form.

7.1.2.       Where mileage in a private vehicle is being claimed then a business
             journey log should also be completed specifying “from/to” and also the
             reason for the journey. (see Appendix C)

7.1.3.       For paper-based claims, a separate claim form should be completed for
             each area of work or activity that will be authorised by a different person
             or RCN department (see 1.2.1). This will ensure that the authorisation
             process is as efficient as possible and that delay in reimbursing the
             expenses are kept to a minimum.

7.1.4.       Members should include their membership number on the claim form.

7.1.5.       Receipts should be attached to the claim form using a staple. They should
             be in date order to correspond with the details on the claim form itself.

7.1.6.       If a receipt is not available then a full explanation should be made on the
             claim form.

7.1.7.       Claim forms must be completed in ink and should be legible. Alternatively,
             those with access to a computer can choose to complete an Excel
             version.

7.1.8.       Claim forms must be signed and sent to the authorising person or
             department. No one is entitled to authorise their own expense claims.
             Inadequately authorised claim forms will be returned to the claimant
             unpaid.

7.1.9.       Payment will normally be made by a transfer directly into a bank account.
             Any changes to a claimants bank details should be notified to the
             Payments Section in the HQ Finance department (except in the three
             National Boards where it should be sent to the relevant Finance or
             Business Manager).




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