CIPR warns of IR35’s ‘damaging effect’ on freelancers

The CIPR has called on the government to delay the implementation of proposed tax regulations which threaten to deprive the private sector of the necessary experience and skills that an independent practitioner can offer.

In a response to an HMRC consultation on the IR35 regulations, the CIPR argues that the proposed changes affecting off-payroll workers in the private sector would stifle enterprise and business at a time when the economy needs to be more agile.

According to the State of the Profession report, 12% of the industry’s workforce – approximately 8,500 PR professionals – describe themselves as independent practitioners. The proposals, already operating in the public sector, are intended to remove the tax advantage gained by those seeking to disguise employment by operating through a limited company. Whilst this need is recognised, the existing regulations are overly complicated and will be damaging for businesses, practitioners and the economy.

Dominic Ridley-Moy, CIPR MCIPR, Dip CIPR, CIPR Independent Practitioners Network
We recognise the need to provide a degree of uniformity into the complicated tax system and, of course, to drive further revenue to help fund public services but are not convinced extending IR35 into the private sector is the way to do that.

This will have a damaging effect, particularly on SMEs who will face a considerable administrative impact.
Dominic Ridley-Moy, CIPR MCIPR, Dip CIPR, CIPR Independent Practitioners Network

The CIPR’s consultation response calls for a delay in implementation and a full review of the Check Employment Status for Tax (CEST) service. You can read the CIPRs consultation submission here.

Notes to editors

About the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR)Founded in 1948, the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) is the Royal Chartered professional body for public relations practitioners in the UK and overseas. The CIPR is the largest membership organisation for PR practitioners outside of North America. By size of turnover and number of individually registered members, we are the leading representative body for the PR profession and industry in Europe.

The CIPR advances professionalism in public relations by making its members accountable to their employers and the public through a code of conduct and searchable public register, setting standards through training, qualifications, awards and the production of best practice and skills guidance, facilitating Continuing Professional Development (CPD), and awarding Chartered Public Relations Practitioner status (Chart.PR).