Tax tip

UPDATED guidance issued by the Inland Revenue to media companies in November (see Nov/Dec Freelance) introduced one crucial new criterion for self-employment: that you and your client "intend that the engagement amounts to self-employment".

Most companies have no wish to pay an extra £10-ish a day in Employer's National Insurance to engage you as a pseudo-employee. So the "mutual intention" should be easy enough to establish.

Still, the conduct of publishers such as EMAP suggests that they have either not received or not understood the import of the new guidance. The NUJ probably has further campaigning to do to change practice to accord with the adjusted rules. These, it should be remembered, have moved in our favour because of the successful case against tax at source conducted by LFB member Margaret Leslie.

Mar/Apr 1998

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