Self-Assessment and Expenses Advice

Your guide to self-assessment, expenses, tax and more.

How This Page Can Help You

Knowing about self-assessment, expenses and what you can claim can save you a lot of time, money and effort and your taxes. We at Jozara bet there’s at least one useful allowable expense for performing artists you haven’t thought of in our list below.

Download our Performance Pros’ Guide to Tax and Self-Assessment

For performing artists, performance practitioners, actors and musicians.

• Overview of taxes for performing artists – what you need to know.
• Tips for filling in your Self-Assessment Tax Return
• Tax deductions and allowable expenses list for performing artists.

Expenses and Tax Deductions for Performing Artists, Actors and Musicians

Expenses are the costs you incur because of your self-employed activities as a performer, performance practitioner or anything else. Before income tax is calculated, your expenses are deducted from your income, so it’s important to remember to include all your allowable expenses to lower your tax bill.

As an artistic professional you are likely to incur expenses that are outside the accepted list of expenses for those in more traditional businesses. Knowing what these are is important and can save you a lot of money in tax. Again, these should be exclusively business-related.

Allowable Expenses and Tax Deductions


• Agent’s commission
• DBS Checks
• Accountant’s fees
• Subscriptions to professional organisations such as Equity and Jozara
• Subscriptions to industry magazines and forums
• PRS fees & Royalties
• Photocopying
• Postage
• Stationery, advertising, brochures and programmes
• Internet connection
• Business mobile
• Proportion of business use of landline telephone
• Photographs, promotional videos and headshots


• Hire of rehearsal studio and performance venue
• Dental work beyond the normal needs of health
• Deputies and accompanists (exclude deputies for an employment)
• Wardrobe
• Laundering and dry cleaning
• Research assistance and materials
• Tickets for cinema, concerts, opera, theatre for research
• Stage appearance expenses such as performance specific contact lenses or glasses; these must not be your everyday eyewear
• Hairdressing, cosmetics, make up remover


• Chiropody
• Throat spray and lozenges
• Fitness costs if related specifically to a role
• Physical treatments related to performance activities


This guide provides a broad overview and not specific tax advice. The information contained herein is correct upon publication
but may become obsolete as HMRC and other bodies update their policies.
• Bulbs & fuses
• Locks & keys
• Plugs & leads
• Computer consumables and external hard drives used for back-ups
• Software licence fees
• Recording equipment
• Musical instrument insurance


• Log the total business mileage for each vehicle
• Breakdown subscription/insurance
• Car hire
• Fuel allowance paid to colleagues
• Vehicle repairs, servicing, MOT and top-up fluids
• Motor insurance
• Parking fees for business activities
• Toll charges
• Ferries
• Fuel
• Road fund licence (aka. road tax)
• Bicycle repairs, maintenance, consumables and insurance


• Hotel accommodation on tour
• Tour luggage and toiletries
• Subsistence – you are allowed to claim the cost of all meals when on overseas engagements. Only claim the cost of the evening meals when on tour in the UK and daytime meals incurred on business travel
• Travel insurance and visas
• Travel cancellation fees