Intermediaries legislation, usually known as IR35, was introduced in 2000 to prevent ‘disguised employment’. The intention was that if someone was effectively an employee, even if they were working for themselves through a limited company, then they would have to pay payroll taxes just like other employees. The rules continue to this day having undergone periodic reviews to tighten the tests that determine whether someone is genuinely working for themselves or is in fact a ‘disguised employee’.
We don’t believe that genuinely disguised employment through micro-businesses is as widespread as some political rhetoric suggests. We also fear that further reforms to IR35 planned in 2017 under the name “off-payroll working in the public sector” will be excessively harsh, unfairly damaging many micro-businesses in the process.
Unfortunately not enough MPs are aware of IR35 let alone the implications of further changes for micro-businesses. We are working hard to improve awareness by meeting politicians and their advisers whilst also submitting evidence to Parliamentary committees.
Take action: The best thing you can do is write to your MP raising your personal concerns. If you’re short of time there is a petition you can support (the wording isn’t ideal, but we believe it’s better to work together than have lots of separate petitions floating about!)