Yesterday, IRD released several draft interpretation statements for comment

These included:

  • The treatment of ‘deemed dividends’ from a company
  • Tax obligations for online gamers, bloggers, content creators and influencers
  • Income Tax and GST treatments of meal expenses

Meal costs always pose some interesting discussions on whether these can be claimed and while individual meals may not be a large cost these can add up over a year particularly if staff are also provided meals.

The draft statement at 37 pages is just long enough showing that while a small expense the actual treatment can have some complexity. Not only do meal costs need to be considered from a deduction point of view where the entertainment rules might apply but also as potentially income for the employee or FBT.

If you do regularly provide meals for staff or claim meal costs, it might be a good time to review your policies and treatment once the statement is finalised.