Over the last few years we have seen a number of legislative changes that has impacted our sector which I have covered in my recent articles and posts. More recently these have included off payroll working in the public sector (IR35) , the Criminal Finance Act, the Taylor Report on the GIG economy and now we have the consultation on off payroll working in the private sector (IR35). Though as a sector we continue to debate the rationale and success of these changes the fact remains that once a piece of legislation has been passed and implemented, we are of course legally obliged to adhere to them, however unfortunately not all provider in our sector share that same view.
The goal for every sector is to create an environment in which every company can compete on a level playing field however we have found in our sector that hasn’t been the case. There are some providers and agencies that have sought to exploit an unfair advantage over their competitors by not adhering to legislations.
Times are changing though and for the good, as Government and HMRC are finally clamping down on providers who are not toeing the line. Our sector has seen a significant increase in activity from HMRC with looking to stamp out bad practice at all levels and we expect this to increase further.
There has been lots of press coverage regarding this, including the recent story by The Times which covered how nearly 100,000 contractors from the IT and Healthcare sectors have received tax bills from HMRC for having used tax avoidance schemes – mostly centred around loan schemes.
On the back of all these recent changes and the recent press coverage we have seen both agencies and contractors more proactively looking to work with compliant providers to ensure that best practice prevails and no one is left exposed to fines or tax bills.
This is where PayStream can help. Our range of accountancy and payroll services means that we can provide tailored advice and ensure contractors are using a service that’s right for them, not what’s best for us. In our industry, a strong focus on compliance is essential, both for us and our contractors' peace of mind. That's why we're advised by industry leaders Eversheds, DLA Piper and BDO on all aspects of our business models. We also have a highly skilled legal and compliance team at our core - led by our Legal Director Julian Ball who was recruited from Eversheds.