Home Office Expenses 2020

Home Office Expenses: CRA Announcement

The CRA announced on December 15, 2020 that two methods are available to individuals claiming home-based work expenses relating to the 2020 tax year.  Both methods will be available to UWindsor employees required to work from home. These two methods are:

 

Temporary simplified method

Under this method, employees who worked at home due to COVID-19 more than 50% of the time for at least four consecutive weeks during the pandemic can claim an amount of $2 per working day, up to a maximum deduction of $400.  It is the employee’s responsibility to ensure that they are eligible for this deduction.  The temporary simplified method does not require a T2200S form or for you to maintain receipts to validate your claim.

 

Detailed claim method

Depending on your personal circumstances, you may determine that you are eligible for deductions greater than what the temporary simplified method offers.  There are specific criteria you must meet, information you must provide and supporting documents you will be required to maintain for all the eligible expenses you claim. Expenses for which you were reimbursed by UWindsor are not eligible.  The detailed claim method requires a T2200S form to validate the conditions of your employment.

Note that UWindsor does not provide employees with personal tax advice; we encourage you to review the CRA’s website to determine which option is best for you.

 

UWindsor will be issuing T2200S to all employees required to work from home.

Signed T2200S forms will be available to University employees who were required to work from home during 2020.  Employees whose job responsibilities did not require them to work form home will not receive a T2200S.

 

We anticipate T2200S forms will be completed by February 28, 2021 and will be made available to employees who were required to work from home in your myUWinfo portal.  This will coincide with the timing that your T4 slip is available.

 

Home office expenses and UWindsor: FAQ’s

The CRA has provided an eligibility checklist on its website. We encourage employees to use this tool before filing their tax return.

That is a personal decision that is entirely up to you. We encourage all employees who are looking to claim home office expenses to work with an income tax professional to answer questions regarding your ability to claim home office expenses. You may also use the tools available on the CRA website to evaluate the two options.

The CRA has provided a website that explains which types of costs are eligible, assuming you have retained your original receipt.

No, expenses that were reimbursed are not eligible.  Please note that if the University reimbursed you for non-consumables (such as equipment), those assets are the property of the University and must be returned to campus when the work from home requirements have ended.

This question is asking the University to confirm its policy about home office expenses.  The inclusion of the caveat “did you or will you” is critical to how the University has to answer this question.  Because it is the University’s policy that we will reimburse employees for certain home office-related expenditures incurred (for example, if a faculty member required a webcam to be able to teach from home), we are required to answer the question as “Yes” for all of our employees.  This was reviewed in detail with our external tax advisors.  This will not impact an employee’s tax return if you were not reimbursed for such costs.

Employees who were required to work from home will receive a T2200S.  If your job duties and responsibilities required you to be primarily on campus during 2020, the University is not permitted to issue you a T2200S.

We will issue a T2200S to former employees upon request only; they will not be mailed to your residence with your T4.  Please contact payroll@uwindsor.ca only if you no longer work at the University of Windsor and wish to receive a T2200S.   

Questions can be directed at payroll@uwindsor.ca or at your human resources representative.