Six tax changes contractors need to know about in 2018
Editor | 8 January 2018
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For many contractors, the Christmas break finished as quickly as it started. A whirlwind few days of stressed-out travelling and mince pie gorging is all that your average contractor can expect before its back to work.

But the New Year period does offer some space for quiet reflection.

Many contractors will have set New Year’s Resolutions and many of these will have centred on money. 

Dividend allowance cut confirmed: How much it will cost you
Editor | 11 December 2017
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The government’s second Finance Bill has been confirmed, meaning that the tax free dividend allowance will be cut from £5,000 to £2,000 from April 2018.

The cut could cost contractors up to £1,143 a year as the Chancellor continues with his raid on self-employed finances.

The dividend allowance cut was first mentioned in the Chancellor’s Spring Budget speech. Phillip Hammond said: “People should have choices about how they work, but those choices should not be driven primarily by differences in tax treatment.”

Budget 2017, IR35, Private sector, Consultation,
Editor | 24 November 2017
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The Autumn Budget delivered this week by Chancellor Philip Hammond was better than contractors than many had expected.

But it did include details about a consultation to extend dreaded public sector IR35 compliance rules over to the private sector.

This is a notoriously tricky subject, so we have produced a brief guide will all the information you need to know.

Skills shortages in IT and construction increase contractor pay outs
Editor | 20 November 2017
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Skills shortages in the key industries of IT and construction are pushing up wages for contractors employed in these sectors.
 
CompTIA’s annual workforce survey of IT executives found that most were in a positive mood about the future, with 62% planning to increase investment in IT products and services.
Could treasury extend IR35 reforms to private sector?
Editor | 6 November 2017
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Reforms to ‘disguised employment’ IR35 rules were introduced in the public sector this year. The new rules caused confusion amongst recruiters and lead to a take-home pay cut for many contractors.

Now the Treasury has dropped its strongest hint yet that similar reforms could be introduced in the private sector – with the potential to affect millions of contractors and freelancers. 

Self-assessment deadline looms: Get help now

The deadline for submitting your online self-assessment tax return is just over six weeks away and accountants are being booked up quickly as time runs out.

Remember that you should have submitted your tax return and paid any taxes you owe by Midnight on 31 January.

With its large team of accountants, Umbrella.co.uk is well placed to help clients complete their self-assessment tax returns on time. But spaces are filling up quickly and opportunities to get help are running out. 

Save money on car and van insurance with a dash cam
Editor | 4 December 2017
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Looking for a Christmas present for yourself? How about one that will save you money for years to come – and help you stay out of legal scrapes.

Contractors spend a great deal of their time on the road. And although you can often claim tax back on travel expenses – the sheer number of miles you get through each year can push up the price of your insurance premiums.

Anything that can bring down these premiums is most welcome and that’s where a dash cam can be your best friend. 

 Autumn Statement - 5 key takeaways for contractors
Editor | 23 November 2017
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In amongst the Britain’s Got Talent audition that the chancellor took part in yesterday were some announcements regarding the economy and some good news for contractors. We won’t repeat his numerous Christmas Cracker jokes but here’s the 5 key takeaways for contractors;

Paradise Papers show tide turning on tax avoidance schemes
Editor | 13 November 2017
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Like the Panama Papers before, the latest leak on the tax affairs of the world’s rich and powerful show that the tide is turning against tax avoidance schemes.

There is no suggestion that those implicated in the leaks did anything illegal, the Paradise Papers have reignited a public debate about the global structures that facilitate tax avoidance.

The leak has led to a further blurring of the line between legal tax avoidance and illegal tax evasion. It has also caused serious reputational damage for dozens of individuals and multinational companies.

‘Too good to be true’ payment scheme users risk bankruptcy

A recently concluded court case could have far-reaching consequences for contractors on ‘too good to be true’ tax avoidance schemes.

In a warning sign to contractors that are thinking about using a dodgy ‘too good to be true’ remuneration scheme, MPs have been told that users of one type of tax avoidance scheme could risk bankruptcy in the near future.

The charge centres on a recently concluded Supreme Court Case between Rangers Football Club and HMRC and a tax avoidance scheme where an offshore Employee Benefit Trust (EBT) paid players and other staff through loans. 

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