Government announces immediate review of IR35 reforms before April deadline.

Reforms to be reviewed.

The Government has announced that it will conduct a full review before rolling out the Off-Payroll Tax: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/off-payroll-review-launched.

According to the Government’s release: “As part of the review, the Government will hold a series of roundtables with stakeholders representative of those affected by the reform, including contractor groups and medium and large-sized businesses, to understand how the government can ensure smooth implementation of the reforms. The Government will also carry out further internal analysis, including evaluation of the enhanced Check employment status for tax (CEST) tool and public sector bodies’ experience of implementing the reform to the off-payroll working rules in 2017.”

There is no promise or suggestion as things stand that the April 2020 deadline will change. The Government has also said it will carry out a separate review to explore how it can better support the self-employed. “That includes improving access to finance and credit, making the tax system easier to navigate, and examining how better broadband can boost homeworking,” the release says.

Commenting, Dave Chaplin, CEO and founder of ContractorCalculator and director of the Stop The Off-Payroll Tax Campaign said: “I am delighted that the Government is holding firm on its promise to conduct a full review. It demonstrates that it is still willing to listen to the thousands of contractors who have been expressing their concerns to their MPs as part of the Stop The Off-Payroll Tax campaign.

“Let’s hope we now have a Chancellor who will not just listen but will react and will stoke the furnace of the self-employed sector, rather than his predecessor Phillip Hammond, who through his reforms, has strangulated it,” he added. “Pushing ahead with this contract jobs killing measure will be insane as we leave the EU. Reliance on a flourishing flexible workforce will be vital.”

“We look forward to the full review and would encourage the Chancellor to now repeal Chapter 10 in its entirety to reverse the damage already done to the public sector,” concludes Chaplin.

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