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Working From Home - Hotspot

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As most of us now work from home, we're relying on our household amenities a lot more which made me think.

Scenario - You're working from home and your electricity goes off. The power company said it should be on later in the afternoon but you need the electricity to power your broadband router. As the only option is to use your mobile phone as a mobile hotspot so you can continue working, does anyone know if you can claim anything through work as connecting like this eats in to your data allowance?

Thanks.
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  • elsien
    elsien Posts: 33,467 Forumite
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    edited 31 May 2022 at 1:37PM
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    Do you not have a work phone you can hotspot off? 
    I wouldn’t use my personal phone, my data allowance is too small. 


    All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.

    Pedant alert - it's could have, not could of.
  • Sheene1976
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    elsien said:
    Do you not have a work phone you can hotspot off? 
    I wouldn’t use my personal phone, my data allowance is too small. 


    No we aren't given them
  • Brie
    Brie Posts: 11,243 Ambassador
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    I suspect the answer would be no to being able to claim unless your employer specifically allows it.  Most don't seem to have done this through the last 2 years so unlikely to start now.

    This is a big change to when previously if you had to work from home your employer might have bought you all the office furniture and had broadband etc installed for you and paid for the monthly costs.  My employed stopped doing that about 7 years back on the assumption that no one lives without broadband.  We are expected to deal with a tax code change to reclaim a very very small benefit to cover the extra cost of WFH.  The only thing that they did do was supply laptops and other IT paraphanalia and decent chairs so we wouldn't all be off with repetitive strain or back injuries.
    "Never retract, never explain, never apologise; get things done and let them howl.”
  • elsien
    elsien Posts: 33,467 Forumite
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    I think it’s a question you’d need to ask your workplace as it will vary between companies. 
    Is there any work you could be getting on with that wouldn’t require internet access? 
    I guess it also depends if you’re salaried/zero hours contract and the impact on that if you can’t put the hours in.
    Still wouldn’t use my own phone though. 
    All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.

    Pedant alert - it's could have, not could of.
  • username
    username Posts: 660 Forumite
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    How much internet do you have on your phone, and how much do you normally use per month (look at your phone bills or usage counter on the phone itself)?

    What kind of work is it that you would do?

    A lot of people have many gigabytes on their package which they don't use up, and depending on the work you do or method you access, it is unlikely to decrement excessively from your mobile data, if it is emails, accessing apps/files remotely etc. Things like Zoom/Teams video calls would drain the data more. Again, there are lots of variables.

    I doubt that unless written into your contract they would reimburse you for such usage. I myself have an unlimited data package on my mobile, so that affords me the ability to also work whever I wish where I have phone reception.
  • matelodave
    matelodave Posts: 8,653 Forumite
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    I agree with flash67, If you are WFH as self employed or just because it suits you then it's down to you. Otherwise its a case of going into the office.

     I didn't expect my employer to sort out my IT when I was allowed to work from home, it was a privilege, not a right. It might be different if the employer insists that you work from home, in which case it's down to them to sort you out.

    Is it really any different to having a job that requires you to provide your own transport, if you have problem its down to you to make provision for any accidents or breakdowns.


    Never under estimate the power of stupid people in large numbers
  • jon81uk
    jon81uk Posts: 3,794 Forumite
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    If you have no electricity how do you power the computer?

    I would say if its a total power cut any reasonable employer would just say don't work for the rest of the day.

    But if it is a broadband outage then you may be expected to go into the office and work there or find another solution.
  • Brie
    Brie Posts: 11,243 Ambassador
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    jon81uk said:
    If you have no electricity how do you power the computer?

    I would say if its a total power cut any reasonable employer would just say don't work for the rest of the day.

    But if it is a broadband outage then you may be expected to go into the office and work there or find another solution.
    Or suggest you take it as a holiday.
    "Never retract, never explain, never apologise; get things done and let them howl.”
  • jon81uk
    jon81uk Posts: 3,794 Forumite
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    Brie said:
    jon81uk said:
    If you have no electricity how do you power the computer?

    I would say if its a total power cut any reasonable employer would just say don't work for the rest of the day.

    But if it is a broadband outage then you may be expected to go into the office and work there or find another solution.
    Or suggest you take it as a holiday.
    Hence me saying any reasonable employer. 

    More than one day I expect it would be either go into the office or take holiday. But a half day due to a power cut, many reasonable places would write that time off, same as if there was a power cut at the office.
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