IR35 Compliance Guides
Since launching in the year 2000, IR35 has grown beyond its original scope. Originally created by HMRC to counteract tax and NICs avoidance by contractors who were an employee, albeit supplied through an intermediary, anyone contracting can now be prone to a visit from the taxman to assess whether they’re inside or outside of IR35.
If you’re deemed inside IR35, the consequences to your take home pay can be devastating. In general terms, it’s accepted that anyone outside takes home 20% more than those caught operating inside.
How do I know if I’m inside IR35?
There’s a huge grey area, in which most contractors sit, where you may or may not be at risk.
This is because there’s no specific legislation to determine the exact difference between someone who’s contractually employed and someone who’s self-employed. The only thing that’s expressly clear is that any contractor can be investigated.
If you’re found to be inside IR35, your income tax and national insurance contributions payment mechanisms revert back to PAYE. As you’re culpable for both employer’s and employee’s NICs, not only could you become worse off than other contractors, but also no better off than those on a firm’s payroll.
All contractors are advised to undertake a review of their business (at least) and even insure against being caught inside IR35. Our guides will tell you how to go about both, and some.
IR35 is still largely misunderstood. Our guide looks at its scope, what being caught inside IR35 could mean to you and your business and, more importantly, how to protect yourself should HMRC decide to investigate.
John Yerou is a pioneer of contractor mortgages and owner and founder of Freelancer Financials, Contractor Mortgages®, C&F Mortgages and Self Employed Mortgages, trading styles and brands of the award-winning Mortgage Quest Ltd.