CRA finds that one-time travel between a home office and the employer’s office was in the course of employment, and that such office could be a special work site

Given the great distance between the residence of new employees hired by the employer for a 24-month period and the employer's offices, they work from home. Although their contract of employment designates one of the employer's offices as their place of work, they are only required to attend there for a single three-day visit for training and team building activities.

CRA indicated that given that the employer’s office was not the employees’ regular place of employment, their travel between home and that office quailed as travel in the course of their employment. This signified that reimbursement for their travel expenses (e.g., for bus and hotels) was not a taxable benefit under s. 6(1)(a). Furthermore, for those who travelled using their own vehicles, a reasonable per-kilometre allowance payable by their employer would not be included in their income pursuant to s. 6(1)(b) by virtue of the exception in s. 6(1)(b)(vii.1), again because such travel would be considered to be in the course of their employment.

Any allowances paid for other types of travel expenses (e.g., for meals) would not qualify for exclusion under s. 6(1)(b)(vii) given the requirement under that provision that the travel be away from the municipality (and, where applicable, metropolitan area) where the employer’s establishment was situated and the CRA position “that a home office is not an employer's establishment.” However, such allowances potentially would qualify for exclusion under s. 6(6)(b) (i.e., travel for temporary work at a special work site of the employer).

Neal Armstrong. Summaries of 30 June 2022 Internal T.I. 2022-0936671I7 F under s. 6(1)(a), s. 6(1)(b)(vii.1), s. 6(1)(b)(vii) and s. 6(6)(b).