As we find ourselves in another National lockdown, businesses may be questioning whether we will see another delay to the implementation of the IR35 Off-Payroll Working changes due to come in from April 2021. This however is wishful thinking as we hear the Government has pledged its commitment to introducing the rules as planned with Parliament having already passed the legislation.
As we are approaching the round-up of 2020, businesses should ensure that considering the IR35 Off-Payroll Working changes from April 2021 is high on the to do list for when we are all back in January. While April may still seem some time away, to ensure compliance with these changes, time should be spent sooner rather than later to implement appropriate processes and procedures for managing contractors going forward.
Towards the back end of 2019 and as we entered 2020, the majority of UK manpower and recruitment (“MPR”) businesses were firmly focussed on ensuring their business models were Brexit ready. However, as 2020 unfolded, and the impact of COVID-19 shook the global economy, attention quickly turned to resilience, cash flow management and damage limitation to ensure survival and for businesses to come out of the other side of the pandemic.
As we edge closer to April 2021 when the private sector will be hit with new IR35 legislation, pushing responsibilities for contractor assessments and deduction of tax up the contractual chain, it is now time for businesses to dust off their IR35 plans from earlier this year for the original implementation date of April 2020.
With April 2021 creeping up on us, businesses in the private sector must ensure they are ready to face the delayed IR35 off-payroll working reform head on to ensure compliance with the legislation. This will mean taking the time now to implement robust processes and procedures for managing contractors going forward, including the completion of employment status assessments where required.