Delay Implementation of IR35 until all sectors can trade fully

Delay Implementation of IR35 until all sectors can trade fully

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Michal Jirku started this petition to Rishi Sunak and

Many thousands of business owners and self emplyed workers in the UK hospitality, entertainment, music and film industries have not been able to trade for the past year because their sectors have been effectively shut down due to COVID - 19 restrictions. Most of these people have had to find alternate work through agencies etc, often at a greatly reduced rate of pay, not only to feed themselves and their families but also to maintain their companies. Maintaining payments on leased premises, vehicles, equipment etc so that once restrictions are lifted we can all get back to working the businesses we've built over our entire working lives.

On April 6th 2021 new IR35 (Inland Revenue Article 35) revised rules are due to come into effect. These revisions are, on the surface, there to level the PAYE playing field between the employed and self-employed. Very much in brief, paraphrasing and in a nutshell, it states that companies that hire casual or short term labour or contractors will be held responsible for the tax due on those worker's pay if the relationship with them is more that of an employer and employee than one company providing a service for another company, at the moment it is the responsibility of the self employed business owner. The whole thing can be found at www.gov.uk/guidance/understanding-off-payroll-working-ir35 . Since the HMRC is a scary institution no-one wants to fall foul of, all of the major employers are forcing all self employed folk onto PAYE.

Whilst in our usual businesses there can be no doubt at all that we fall outside the remit of this revision, or "out of scope" as the HMRC would put it, it could however be argued that the work we are doing at this interim time could fall "In Scope" and mean workers have to go on PAYE with the agency the work is sourced through rather than working as a self-employed entity. This is the equivalent of an employee office worker on PAYE having to lease their own desk, photocopier, computer, car, office space etc and having to pay for it out of their wages after tax and NI has been deducted.

With the end of this awful COVID situation so tantalisingly in sight, introducing these revisions at this time will sound the death knell of thousands of small companies that are, and have been, hanging on so courageously with only a short way to go until they can bounce back.

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