Employment Status

Are you a contractor? If you work for someone else, it is important to know whether you are working for that person in an employed capacity or in a self-employed capacity as an independent contractor.

Your employment status will determine the charge to tax on income from your employment or self-employment. It will also determine the class of NICs, which are to be paid.

Umbrella Companies employ you for tax purposes and complete central returns for all their contractors. It's less hassle and more flexible for you but take home pay is typically less than that the limited company option.

The best option for you depends on your plans, 'one off' contract or 'contractor for life'? [Read More...]

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Should Contractors use an Umbrella Company Umbrella Company Benefits

Should Contractors use Umbrella Companies

An umbrella company works as a back-office for freelancers and contractors who work under a contract assignment(s).

If you are a temporary worker you can substantially reduce your paperwork and administration work-load by registering for free with an umbrella company.

Once registered, you will have nothing else to do but hand your weekly/monthly timesheets into them - together with any expenses you may have run up. At that point the umbrella company takes over. You just sit back and wait for your net salary to hit your bank account a few days later.

Meanwhile, the umbrella company gets on with the administration. They:

  • Invoice your agency
  • Ensure your agency don't pay late
  • Calculate what tax is due
  • Deal with all matters concerning HMRC
  • Transfer your money direct to your personal bank account

Not so long ago, you would have to have done all this work yourself. With an umbrella company you don't have to deal with VAT, income tax, NI contributions, legal issues, spreadsheets and payroll.

When you choose your umbrella company you need to take into account the level of service you require and how much you want to pay.

Contractor Supermarket is unique in offering existing contractors a means to rate their umbrella company on a number of factors, including priceand service. All the scores are added together to form the Top 10 UK Umbrella Company Chart.

This means you can pick your umbrella company knowing what other contractors think about them. And if that's not enough - visit our list of Approved umbrella companies for that extra peace of mind!

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HMRC Compliance

It's the basics... Compliance with Tax, VAT, PAYE and fiscal arrangements is mandatory for contractors regardless of whether you use an umbrella company or your own limited company.

Incredible then that there are still rogue umbrella companies and limited company accountants who expose their contractors to fraud. Umbrella Compare provides THE solution, we thoroughly vet all umbrella companies and limited company accountants that we list [Read more...].

Umbrella Compare provides a holistic overview of contracting with the aim of helping new and old contractors find the right payroll solutions. Contracting should be about focusing on the contract, not payroll, accounting, HMRC and bureaucracy.