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APSCo responds to Autumn Statement IR35 hiatus for UK flexible recruitment market

IR35 changes

APSCo welcomes the Government’s lack of action on IR35.  Following recent reports leaked to the media regarding far-reaching changes to the legislation, APSCo was expecting material which could have seriously impacted on the professional recruitment sector.  However, it appears that, following the overwhelming negative response from business as a whole and a rigorous press and lobbying campaign by APSCo, the Government has chosen to think more carefully about the unintended consequences of the proposals. 

Commenting, Samantha Hurley, Head of External Relations and Compliance at APSCo says:

“We understand now from HMRC that the Government is still considering responses to their discussion document.  APSCo strongly protested against the proposals, leaked a couple of weeks ago, and it seems that the Government has listened to our concerns about damaging the professional, flexible labour market in the UK with a knee-jerk reaction.  We will continue to work with the Government to find the best solution for the Exchequer and British business.”

“Of course, the lack of an announcement in the Autumn Statement doesn’t mean that the Government won’t go forward with this proposal in the future, but it does almost certainly mean that it won’t come into effect in April, 2016, which is what we feared.”

Changes to Travel and Subsistence Rules

APSCo will also be briefing its members on the changes to the travel and subsistence rules for individuals working through intermediaries, who will no longer be eligible for tax relief on their expenses unless they pass the test of being genuinely self-employed. 

Commenting on these changes, Samantha Hurley said, “The Chancellor confirmed what we thought that the government will legislate to restrict tax relief for travel and subsistence expenses for workers engaged through an employment intermediary, such as an umbrella company or a personal service company.  This change will take effect from 6 April 2016.  Unfortunately, it appears that we will have to wait until the 9th December for the draft legislation to be published, before we will know the full details of the test that will be used to decide on someone’s employment status for tax purposes, and therefore whether they are able to claim tax relief on their expenses. ”

Business Rates

APSCo welcomes the further support given to small business in the form of the extension to the doubling of small business rate relief (SBRR) in England for 12 months to April 2017.

“The majority of recruitment firms in the country are SMEs and it is pleasing to see that many will continue to receive 100% relief from business rates,” added Hurley.


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