Company: Safety clothing, protecting yourself in the workplace

At work, the safety garment is a great ally. It allows you to carry out your professional activity safely, especially for difficult or dangerous jobs. But it also makes it possible to recognize the trade, or the company, when it comes to a uniform. Investing in an adequate and quality outfit allows you to work in good conditions, being easily recognizable. Some uniforms, easily recognizable, are also safety clothes for those who wear them on a daily basis.

Safety clothing, everyday equipment

Safety in the workplace ensures the good health of the teams, as well as their well-being on a daily basis. These two aspects are essential for the business to function. For certain professions that are recognized as potentially “at risk”, the wearing of an adapted outfit is then essential, mandatory.

This applies in particular to people who work in warehouses, handling heavy loads such as forklift operators; who need reinforced shoes, as well as protective clothing to avoid injury. But also construction workers, who need to wear a helmet, or a jacket to be seen and protect themselves.

Other sectors of activity including the wearing of safety clothing, law enforcement such as police, military, or firefighters. These trades are easily recognizable thanks to their specific uniform. But they, too, need an outfit that protects them from any risky situation. No construction helmet, but rangers, these shoes reinforced to protect the feet; bulletproof vests for law enforcement who intervene during delicate missions…

Thus, for companies that offer potentially risky positions, having adequate outfits for their employees makes it possible to guarantee them all the security they need. In France, many jobs are considered dangerous. Also, the protection of employees with good quality safety clothing is an obligation.

The challenge of these outfits is also that they can not be confused, especially when it comes to uniforms. Thus, when you see a firefighter in work clothes, it is easy and quick to know what his trade is, in addition to the colors of the outfit that are easily recognizable.

Construction workers' site
Construction workers must protect themselves on construction sites.

Choosing comfortable and practical safety clothing

Safety clothing has evolved well in recent years. Less cumbersome, they are more designed to allow the people who wear them to move quickly, and to better intervene with the populations. The outfit as a whole must therefore be light, without ignoring the protection it provides. The outfit, the accessories must be thought for their practicality, in order to facilitate the work of each.

A good safety garment must meet several challenges. Worn throughout the year, it must be pleasant on a daily basis, so as not to be a factor of arduousness. Each element must be the right size, meet the needs of companies to fulfill its role. If the outfit hinders the proper performance of the missions of those who carry them, then it is not suitable.

It is then important to choose a safety garment carefully, studying the outfits most adapted to the profession concerned. A construction worker will not need an outfit provided for paramedics; or a police officer the outfit of a private security guard. Everyone’s expectations are not the same, which implies that each trade has separate accessories. Accessories useful directly to the exercise of their activity.

The professional uniform is one of the distinctive signs of companies with a particular sector of activity. It is therefore important that these outfits are different from those that employees wear in their daily lives. Otherwise, they do not protect in any way, and are not considered as work clothes, nor as safety clothing.

How are safety clothing considered from a tax point of view for the company?

The purchase of safety clothing in the context of work represents a significant investment for a company. The more precautions the sector of activity requires, the more outfits and accessories will be numerous… And the higher the final bill will be. Also, companies that invest in such equipment have the possibility, under conditions, to benefit from a deduction from the company’s results.

Clothing expenses are deductible from the company’s result… To the extent that they correspond to the acquisition of special work clothes. If the latter are assimilated to work clothes that could be worn in everyday life, then this deduction is not possible.

For example, specific clothing related to a professional activity, whether distinctive or protective, is recognized as eligible for deduction. This concerns, for example, the dress worn by lawyers, construction clothing for workers, coveralls for ski instructors, gowns for medical staff… Thus, a garment worn at work such as a suit cannot be deduced from the company’s results. To be considered a safety or work garment, it must have a direct link with the activity. Otherwise, it will be considered a personal purchase.

Alternatively, you can opt for the calculation of the actual costs for your income tax; and instead of the 10% flat fee, you will have the option to deduct clothing expenses that are specific to your profession. On the other hand, you must imperatively keep the proof of purchase for a period of three years.

Deductible equipment is also taken into account, such as noise-cancelling headphones, gloves, safety shoes, masks… In risky activities, employees are obliged to own them, provided by the company.

Maintenance costs for safety clothing are also taken into account

In addition to investing in safety clothing for the teams, the company must also ensure their maintenance. The costs of maintenance, repair and laundering of clothes are part of these services, deductible in the result.

Doctors hospital blouse work outfit
Doctors and surgeons wear specific work clothes.

For the maintenance of these clothes, there are several scenarios. The first is if the company uses the dry cleaning services of an external service provider who takes care of the laundry. In this case, the invoice issued is authentic and allows to be entitled to the deduction.

The second scenario is if the company provides employees with washing and drying machines at the workplace. They can wash their work clothes (not their personal clothes) themselves.

For a laundering of work clothes at home, it is possible to deduct on a flat-rate basis, from an amount. This amount is assessed by taking as a reference the rates charged by professional launderers. If necessary, it is important to remember to show the calculation made. Be careful, however, this calculation is likely to be questioned by the administration.

Finally, if it is the employees themselves who take care of bringing their work clothes to the laundry or dry cleaning, the company reimburses the costs on presentation of an invoice. On the other hand, if employees are responsible for washing their work clothes at home… The company can pay them a cleaning premium, which would cover the costs of washing these outfits.

Being an important expense item for companies, safety and work clothing must therefore be cleaned with the greatest care to last over time, and avoid new expenses for companies.

A way to identify with the company

Today, a large number of companies have safety clothing for its employees. The pandemic has brought more protective measures with the arrival of mask wearing; or blouse; in gloves or visor to protect yourself. This equipment is mandatory for all companies, in order to protect employees; whether they work in an office, in a warehouse or in a factory.

In addition, depending on the activity carried out, the outfits are different, including safety clothing, accessories. This set of elements allows teams to work in good conditions, especially in the context of physical or strenuous activities.

The companies that offer such equipment also take care of the customization of each outfit, so that the client companies have clothes adapted to their image, to their colors. For employees, it is a sign of belonging to the company, with the name of the latter flocked or sewn on the garment. Thus, these outfits are then considered as work outfits.

The ranges of clothing are different to adapt to the needs of all trades, according to their activity. This allows platforms that offer these services, or physical businesses to reach more people, but also to adapt to tastes and needs, by not offering a single model.

Safety clothing plays a central role in the activity of employees in their duties. Being protected, feeling good, and benefiting from a professional outfit allows you to work in better conditions, and thus to spend more serene days in the workplace.

Sources:

“The Deductibility of Workwear” Compta Clémentine, article published on March 7, 2017

“Work clothes: tax deductibility” L’Expert Comptable, article published on October 15, 2021

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