Tax on phone and broadband paid by employer

If your employer covers phone and broadband costs that you incur outside of working hours, you're liable for tax.

Your employer must report your tax advantage, so you need to check that the details in your tax return are correct. If the details are incorrect, you have to contact your employer.

You're taxed on up to NOK 4,392, even if the value of what your employer covers is higher than that. It does not matter whether your employer covers one or several services (phone, broadband, etc.). 

If your employer covers NOK 10,000 for landline, mobile and broadband use, your income is increased by NOK 4,392 in the tax return.

If you're self-employed and operate as a sole proprietorship, you may be entitled to a deduction for the costs of your business use of mobile, broadband etc.

Private use is liable for tax

If you bring a mobile phone provided by your employer home outside of normal working hours, we assume that you're entitled to use the phone outside of a work context. This is then considered to be a tax advantage.

If you generally do not take the phone home after work, but use it for private purposes

  • on more than 14 days in a 30-day period
  • on more than 30 days in total over a year

it's also considered a tax advantage.

However, if you leave the phone at your place of work every day, it's not considered a tax advantage.

Calculation of your tax advantage

How your tax advantage is calculated depends on whether:

  1. The employer is the subscriber (payment in kind)
    You receive a fixed income supplement of NOK 4,392 per year, regardless of whether you yourself pay anything for the service(s).
    If your employer only covers the expenses for part of the year, your tax advantage will be calculated at NOK 366 for each month or part thereof.
  2. You are the subscriber (expense allowance)
    Your tax advantage is calculated on the basis of the actual expenses covered. You're taxed on a maximum of NOK 4,392 per year.
    It does not matter whether the bill has already been paid by you or whether it is sent direct to your employer for payment. The amount will be reported by your employer in the month in which the employer settles the bill.

In certain cases, both you and your employer may be the subscribers, for example if you're covered for both your phone and broadband use. In such cases, the tax advantage will still be limited to a maximum of NOK 4,392 per year.

Tax-free amount for jointly invoiced goods and services

Your employer can cover so-called jointly invoiced goods and services with a total value of up to NOK 1,000 without this being considered a tax advantage for you. Jointly invoiced goods and services include such things as premium rate phone services, premium rate SMS/MMS, database services, software, downloading/streaming of TV broadcasts, music, films, games, etc. They may also include payments for goods, such as food and drink from vending machines. Some services may also be included in the subscription price (additional services), including free use of music or film services.

Under the tax exemption, the tax-free basic allowance of NOK 1,000 is used up first. The employer may allow all coverage of such goods and services to be included in the tax-free amount without distinguishing between business and private use. If the jointly invoiced goods and services exceed NOK 1,000, the employer must assess the excess and determine what constitutes business and private use respectively. The part of the excess amount that relates to private use will be taxed as pay under the ordinary rules.

Your employer must report the amount covered, so you have to check that the details in your tax return are correct. If the details are incorrect, you need to contact your employer.