The Extraordinary Exclusion By Rishi Sunak
An excellent piece in Contractor UK this week from Rebecca Seeley Harris, a leading expert in ‘employment status’ and IR35.
This, directly from the article…”The chancellor keeps talking about ‘we are all in this together,’ in relation to the coronavirus. By ‘all,’ he must be excluding the many industrious men and women who have set up their own company to make a living. Some will get by on the small amount of work they can wrestle out of covid-19, or which they can tease out of the many clients risk-averse about IR35 reform. But many PSCs won’t and will fail. And even those who do survive will be storing up for the government an angry, hard-working swathe of the electorate who will surely return the favour at the next election of being totally singled out and left without.”
Definitely worth a read for summing up the general mood of the contractor workforce right now.
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Questioning The Democratic Process
Kirti Shukla from the Self Employed Alliance shared her thoughts in a post highlighting the questionable democracy of a three-line whip.
Link to LinkedIn post shared as the comments are often useful for additional insights and perspectives.
Here, for information is the definition of a three-line whip and just how this can completely scupper any chance of MPs being able to vote based on their own personal views, or to effectively represent their constituents.
Important divisions are underlined three times – a ‘three-line whip’ – and normally apply to major events like the second readings of significant Bills.
Defying a three-line whip is very serious, and has occasionally resulted in the whip being withdrawn from an MP or Lord. This means that the Member is effectively expelled from their party (but keeps their seat) and must sit as an independent until the whip is restored.”
Oh, and so you can have a piece of useful knowledge at contractor parties… “The use of the word ‘whip’ within Parliament has its roots in the 18th century hunting terminology ‘whipper-in’. It refers to a huntsman’s assistant who drives straying hounds back to the main pack using a whip.”
See… always adding value 😉
Seeing It Through
The Finance Bill 2nd Reading is at 11am on 17th July.
Economic Affairs Committee report ‘Off-payroll working: treating people fairly’ – Lord Forsyth of Drumlean is listed for a debate.
You may remember that Lord Forsyth recognised the “nonsense” of IR35 and the new rules…“It’s just not good enough for the revenue to devise means of maximizing their revenue without actually taking account of the unfairness that that puts on people who may not have full employed status,”
See the Lords calendar: – https://calendar.parliament.uk/calendar/Lords/All/2020/7/17/Daily
Thanks for the nudge Kirti Shukla, who posted this on LinkedIn and reminds us that if one of the Lords is your MP, then you may want to email them and flag your concerns.
Beware Of Minor Status Tests
When determining employment status for IR35, there’s a pretty good awareness of the three main key status tests;
- Right to Substitution,
- Control, and
- Mutuality of Obligation.
Minor status tests can often swing a borderline case. Susie Ferguson from Kingsbridge kindly shares what they are and how you can evidence them.
Asking The Government To Re-Think
TribePad CEO Dean Sadler has set out why this is the case in the following piece for onrec – read it here.
…”Self-employed contractors bring a significant amount to the table, with their constant upskilling and agile approach to getting stuff done. But they are facing significant threats and stress due to the pandemic. IR35 will make their lives even worse – something the government hasn’t taken into consideration with refusing to scrap the change and go ahead with the reform in April 2021.”
What Should Recruiters Be Doing?
In this article from Orange Genie, James Holt touches on the intermediary in the supply chain – the Recruiter and the role that they could play.
Not in the article, but maybe this will help clients recognise the value of great recruitment consultants who are experts in their field vs those who, well.. aren’t. I did add this to the post on LinkedIn – maybe it’ll get some comments.
Prospect of Success Clause – The Results
Last week we asked the LinkedIn community about their awareness of the prospect of success clause commonly found in IR35 Insurance terms. Here are the results.
So, a message for those in insurance – greater clarification please. These clauses can have a significant impact at the point of a claim.
One for the contractors
Given the amount of information freely available, I’m interested to know where the tools will be purely client focused moving forwards. Or do contractors still want to have something to check their assumptions against?
Answer the poll here and find out the results next week…
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