Will home office soon become mandatory again?

Have your employees been working from a home office for the majority of the last few months?

If so, Mr. Habeck’s possible renewed plans to make home office work compulsory over Christmas should not affect you very much.

Working from home is a great thing, as long as you as a company ensure that your employees do not incur any additional costs.

Should there really be a complete gas supply freeze from Russia in the near future, you as a company are required to offer a fair and flexible home office arrangement for your employees. Corresponding plans by the Bundesbank have already announced. It is therefore all the more important that corresponding home office allowances are permanently established in tax law. The restriction to a maximum of 120 days and thus also the limitation of deductible expenses to 600 euros must be abolished. Currently, employees can deduct 5 euros from their taxes for each working day spent in the home office, up to a maximum of 600 euros per year.

But is a possibly again planned home office obligation really a nicely meant offer or perhaps only a trick of the enterprises, in order to save energy?

This question is currently occupying the “Linkspartei” (Left Party). They are therefore calling for companies to be held accountable. They should be obliged to pay all the energy costs incurred by employees in their home offices. The additional costs must not be “passed on” to the employees.

The SPD and “Die Grünen” (the Greens) have so far held back on the issue and possible relief. In their eyes, financial relief for home office options is basically a good concern. They are now planning to look at various regulations relating to home office in the second half of the year and make improvements. 

In the event of an energy shortage, the Bundesbank is considering closing offices in the fall and winter. The possibilities of supplying heat only to certain floors or parts of the building and thus reducing the heat supply to a minimum are also currently being examined.

It remains to be seen if and when the new regulations will take effect and whether they will really lead to tax relief for your employees.

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