Plenty has happened in the few weeks since our last IR35 update: a General Election, Christmas, the start of a new decade, and the launch of the government’s eagerly awaited IR35 review.
There is no doubt that the government hasn’t left itself much time to review, scheduled for completion mid-February, it looks as though the changes will be going ahead on April 6th without any dramatic amendment. One piece of good news for contractors though is HMRC’s assurance that they will not be using any information resulting from the IR35 changes to open a new enquiry into previous years, unless they have reason to suspect fraud or criminal behaviour.
Reactions from the industry have not been positive, with Andy Chamberlain (Deputy Director of Policy at IPSE) calling it ‘hasty and inadequate’ and Julia Kermode, Chief Executive of the FCSA, ‘meaningless’. While some companies seem relaxed about the situation, others have taken steps to ban limited contractors all together (for example HSBC and, as of the end of last week, Lloyds Banking Group).
So what does all this mean for our clients and candidates?
Candidates: The government has published a Factsheet, click here to view, although this document itself has come under fire for advising contractors that they need do nothing until April. We would advise that you speak to your clients sooner rather than later, particularly if you are already contracted to work past April 6th. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about their process, and when you can expect to receive your Status Determination Statement.
Clients: With just over two months to go, you should be communicating with your contractors and ensuring that everyone has a solid understanding of what is going to happen and how it will affect them. Whatever you do, don’t be tempted to make blanket role-based determinations across your workforce, as these will not be considered to follow the ‘reasonable care’ requirement of the legislation.
We’ve updated our information sheets which can be found below. Please do not hesitate to contact us to discuss any queries you may have.
For information on IR35 for our candidates – click here
For information on IR35 for our clients – click here