Contractors must take action over the latest IR35 threat, despite the uncertainty!!

The draconian new ‘one month rule’ and clients becoming responsible for IR35 compliance that the Guardian and MailOnline claim are to be announced by the Chancellor George Osborne during his Autumn Statement could well be a ‘trial balloon’. Government are in the frantic build up to the spending review being announced, so it is quite likely that various policies are being trialled and public relations techniques are being applied to help shape responses. Release of this suggested ‘one month rule’ could be softening up opinion before releasing a far less strict measure in the final announcement. So, for example, the intention could be to consider contractors who have spent three months with a client to be ‘employees’, rather than just the one month as the media reports suggest. Alternatively, the intention could be to gauge response to a genuine plan and shape policy accordingly. The Treasury is believed to be nowhere near finished with the spending review and Autumn Statement, so it could even be an attempt to resolve an internal battle within the Treasury and HMRC. rrr 10 rrr Contractors still have time to take action before the Autumn Statement and, depending what is announced and how the Government plans to implement it, any proposed changes are by no means a done deal.