New meal allowance amounts from 1st May 2022

Written by Mgr. Dagmar Gmitterová

According to Section 152(1) of the Labour Code, the employer is obliged to provide employees with meals corresponding to the principles of good nutrition at or near their workplaces during all shifts. The employer or temporary employment agency also has the same obligation towards the temporarily assigned employee. The employer shall not be under an obligation to provide meals to employees on secondment, except employees on secondment who have worked more than four hours at their regular place of work and employees to whom it provides a financial contribution earmarked for meals. At the employee's choice, the employer shall provide the employee with meals through a legal entity or a natural person authorised to arrange catering services, in the form of a meal voucher, or shall provide the employee with a financial contribution towards meals.

According to Article 152(3) of the Labour Code, the employer shall contribute to the catering in the amount of at least 55 % of the cost of the meal, but not more than 55 % of the meal for each meal for a working trip of between 5 and 12 hours. Utilizing Measure No 116/2022 Coll., the amounts of the meal allowance are changed and increased to €6 as from 1st May 2022, the employer contributes to the meal allowance as follows:

  • at least 55 % of the price of the meal,
  • up to a maximum of 55 % of the above meal allowance, i.e. a maximum of € 3.30 per meal.

From 1st May 2022, the minimum value of the meal voucher shall be increased from € 3.83 to € 4.50. The minimum employer's contribution to the meal voucher or meal allowance is € 2.48.

From a tax and levy point of view, there is no difference between a meal allowance and a meal voucher. For both forms, the amount of both the catering allowance and the meal voucher is exempt from income tax for the employee up to an amount of € 3.30. The contribution from the social fund is also exempt from tax. The amount above this threshold, i.e. above  3.30 (excluding the social fund contribution), will be taxed as part of the employee's salary and will be subject to social security contributions.

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