Commenting on the report, Dave Chaplin, CEO and founder of contracting authority ContractorCalculator and IR35 Shield said:
“There are some strong recommendations and worrying observations in this report and lots more work needs to be done so that contractors are treated fairly and properly. Before any legislation is passed, which won’t happen overnight, the supply chain should seek to introduce clear and better transparency to ensure workers are given full rights if they are considered to be “deemed employees” under the new Off-Payroll tax rules that kicked in earlier this week. Contractors who now find themselves “inside IR35” are in an untenable position – they are working PAYE but have none of the rights that come with permanent employment. Zero rights employment is simply wrong. It’s time to finally overhaul the discredited IR35 legislation, which everyone knows doesn’t work and come up with a way to properly recognise contracting and freelancing in the tax system and ensure people are either classed as self-employed or as employees with full rights and benefits.
“There are clearly some aspects of how the commercials operate between agencies and umbrellas which serve to drive unethical behaviours and distort the market, all to the detriment of the worker. Some regulation to remove these distortions is needed to level the playing field.
“And there are of course concerns about some umbrella companies not acting in the best interests of their contractors, but it’s certainly not all of them. A strong dose of transparency, better auditing and some additional regulation, should hopefully drive the unethical ones out the market. HMRC also need to be much better at pre-emptively shutting these operators down by leveraging the data they already collate from agencies.
“This ‘wild west’ clearly needs some cleaning up but with the sheriff Matthew Taylor no longer in post who will pick up the mantle and sort it out before more damage is done?”