* Posts by d3vy

1617 posts • joined 28 Mar 2014

UK's Defra and Ministry of Justice facing £120m IR35 tax bills thanks to inaccuracies in assessing contractors' status


Re: Pointless

Because it fluffs the numbers up for HMRC when they report on how much they have "saved" the country.

Its like you or I taking £100 out of our trouser pocket and putting it in a jacket pocket and then claiming to be £100 better off - pointless shuffling of funds.

I'm just waiting for the HMRC sues HMRC for IR35 non compliance headlines which are inevitable.

Amazon tells folks it will stop accepting UK Visa credit cards via weird empty email


Well, other than if I use a debit card that money leaves my bank straight away and once its gone its difficult to get back.

Whereas with a CC you generally don't pay for purchase until the next billing cycle which gives you time to spot and dispute the charge before being financially inconvenienced by it.


Re: Limited choice

"So my credit card is Mastercard and my bank debit card is just about to switch from Visa to Mastercard.

Previously if the Mastercard didn't work for a transaction I would use my Visa card. What would I do now:

Walk away from the petrol station?"

Cant speak for the other establishments but no, for a petrol station you simply need to go in, explain the situation, fill in some details and sign a "letter of intent" to pay then you can drive off and return with appropriate payment within a specified time frame (used to be 10 days).

When I worked for shell, I was told that it was a legal requirement for petrol stations to offer this - though that may have changed because it was *a long* time ago (2001).


Re: My email wasn't blank...

"And to address what another poster said, I doubt Amazon can see all your transactions because, I called them to query something and because it was card-related, they transferred me to New Day who are the actual card issuer. They're also very helpful."

Exactly this, I have worked for a company which issued "its own" cards (Both visa and mastercard depending on the country) and in every case we did not get access to any transaction data unless it was a transaction on our platform.

The real benefit to us (and the customer) was a quicker and more seamless cash out process from our platform (which may or may not have had the side effect of circumventing some regulatory stuff in some countries, Though that was always a suspicion rather than a certainty) - that and near instant reconciliation compared to the normal Authorise then wait for funds process.

Tech contractor loses IR35 tribunal appeal: 'Right' to substitute didn't mean he could, say judges


Re: Substitution?

That would work, but its not what clients want.


Re: Yet another push for us to all go work at Tesco

"When I last contracted in the UK over a decade ago I was paying 20-25% in tax, or rather retaining 75-80%"

Yeah, we don't retain that much now without doing something illegal!

I miss the days when dividends were effectively tax free :)


Re: Do it like the trades do

"Looking at the facts of this case, it looks like if they had done it on a true project basis it seems it would be fine. A real project based contract would specify the project, a delivery time and a fee scheme based on the job not the hours worked. The building industry does this all the time."

>> Yes but the building industry also does Time and Materials contracts where they bill for the time spent doing a job as well as the materials. I had a plumber in fitting new bathrooms at the start of the year, he was here for two weeks, half way through we threw a new boiler in too and then had him rip out old piping in the loft and re-tile part of the kitchen... He just billed us for the extra time and carried on. IS HE MY EMPLOYEE NOW?


Re: A couple of things here I'm surprised about

"I realise I may be sinking (parts of) my own argument here, but there's a truism in contracting circles; you're worth as much as you're paid, no more and no less."

>> This is very true, and is reflected by different clients offering different rates for more or less the same work, I might only be worth £250 a day to a client who has a tight budget and loose project deadline or I might be worth £500 a day to another client who needs something done quickly that I have prior experience of.

"Anyway point being: if you think you're worth more, go out and get it. If you can't be bothered, you're not worth it. If you're trying but nobody's prepared to pay your rate, you're not worth it."

>> Yes!


Re: I'm going to go out on a limb...

"I'm not UK based so no IR35,"

>> Nice

"but we do have mutuality of obligation built into the contract. Reason being that I'm currently performing a critical function and am in theory not easily replaced (although I suspect I'm easier to replace than they think, they're just lazy), so they wanted a 3 month notice period."

>> Yeah thats the bit that wont fly for a UK contractor in terms of IR35 its a huge red flag.

"Also no timesheets. It's a fixed-term employment contract with a defined end date."

>> Makes sense, thats not the type of contract that HMRC are concerned about, so wouldnt be an issue if you were UK based anyway.

"The concept of risking being told 'we have no work for you' and shown the door is alien to me. I'm sure it happens, but it's not a contractual basis I or my employer would be happy with. I presume it works both ways, in that you can also walk away with same-day notice?"

>> In theory yes, I could terminate the contract and leave immediately, or I could work the notice period.

Its quite one sided skewed in favour of the client, I know a lot of contractors won't even terminate early in case it gets them blacklisted by the client (or worse the agent) so most I know prefer to keep relations good and either wait until the end of the contract or if they have to, terminate but work notice.

Generally if I terminate Ill work the notice and then offer on call support at a reduced rate (or free if I want to keep the client sweet) for a period after I have left.

The main take away is that UK contractors dont really have many protections, even things built into the contract can be pretty much meaningless as the ruling in this case shows.


Re: A couple of things here I'm surprised about

Hes also said his problem is with contractors not paying tax, but then spent the majority every comment complaining that contractors get paid more than him... and for some reason he has something against testers too.

Im fairly confident that tax isn't his main issue, it might be part of it but I get the impression that his employer is a bit shit and he doesn't get paid particularly well (or thinks he is worth more than he gets).

To compound matters the same employer brings in contractors to work along side him and pays them more, now if I was being immature I'd suggest that there was a reason for his low pay and the need to bring in contractors to work alongside him even if they cost twice as much... but I'm not so Ill stick to him having a bad employer.

I'd have changed jobs by now, not sure why he hasn't, the jobs market is brilliant at the moment, I dont know why but there seems to be tonnes of well paid IT work going but for some reason this guy would rather stay where he is and complain that everyone else has it better than him and its just. not. fair.


Re: I'm going to go out on a limb...

"Then if you are not economically and emotionally able to deal with the uncertainty that comes with being paid more maybe you should make different choices rather than crying for sympathy from people who get their extra money in bonuses that never get paid because once again the company splurged the budget paying one person to work for the same money they could employ 2 graduates."

>> Mate, every one of your comments has boiled down to "They get paid more than me, its not fair", if your company needed two graduates they would hire two graduates, but they didnt they hired one contractor because they needed a job doing quickly and they didnt want to have ongoing costs of two new employees.

Ill say it again, your employer sounds terrible, why do you still work there?

Change jobs or start contracting, but don't devote years of your life to an employer who doesn't give a toss about you, it sounds like its making you really bitter and there is no reason for it, there are good employers out there who will value you and pay you what you are worth.


Re: Chasing the little guy...

100% ?

So no salary sacrifice pensions?

No ISAs?

No salary sacrifice student loan repayments?

No cycle to work schemes?

And you can wave goodbye to the 12k tax free personal allowance.

By this logic literally EVERYONE is a tax dodger.

I've just spotted the troll icon, I salute you, I was properly reeled in by that :)


Re: Good for HMRC

"All this does is that contractors will have to join big consultancies, get paid the same salaries as employees"

Funnily enough the final straw that pushed me into contracting was being TUPEd into CSC and being treated like a contractor but with none of the benefits...


Re: I'm going to go out on a limb...

"My contract doesn't allow a zero notice period except in disciplinary situations. If yours does without a very good reason, you might want to have somebody to look at it."

Seriously, you might want to get an IR35 review done, an enforceable notice period suggests Mutuality of obligation.

Also "disciplinary situations" - Holy shit, I'd speak to QDOS tomorrow morning - that isn't a T&M contract its a contract of employment.... You honestly need to get that looked at right now unless you are already inside IR35.

"Re not being paid for four months; when I was a permie one of my team was sent on assignment from his extremely-low-cost home country to a country with one of the highest costs of living in the world. His assignment wasn't set up correctly (thanks HR) so he ended up not being paid his assignment salary uplift for 2 salary cycles, and had to cover several thousand pounds of living costs for that time. He could claim back of course, but expenses were paid back with salary cycles and so it still (temporarily) destroyed his savings, current account and credit card just to stay afloat."

>> Thats a bit shitty, I can see that would be an issue. I guess the main difference there would be he KNEW he would eventually see that money again, there are tonnes of examples on the contractor forums of companies just refusing to pay, or going bust (I was at Carilion when it went down and only managed to get my last invoice covered by the skin of my teeth) or agents refusing to pay a final invoice because a timesheet hasn't been signed... There is very little comeback for contractors in this situation, but yes, Ill grant you permies can have issues too, though they generally have better protections against these things.


Going back to the notice period what I suspect you will find is that your contract (assuming you are outside IR35) has a notice period of 1-4 weeks but also has a clause that states you will be paid after submitting a completed timesheet or something equivalent AND that the client has no obligation to give you work.

In real terms this means that no work = no money, because a client can say to you "We're terminating the contract now, start your 1 month notice" and "We don't have any work for you to do, go home" in one breath and have no obligation to pay you.

This is standard practice, it happens to contractors all the time, how do you not know this?

Its happened to me a few times and at the start of lockdown last year 50+ contractors started work at 9am at my old client and were sent home by 9.30am with nothing, they got paid up to the previous day and that was it, no notice, no additional money, just a handshake and a thanks.

*THAT* does not happen to permanent employees.


Re: I'm going to go out on a limb...

"Exactly! 450 a day (~100k a year), no one outside of the executive gets paid that much, certainly no employed r&d engineer!"

>> You're back to complaining about your wages and not tax law again, I definitely know permanent software developers on 60k+ a year who's total package will be costing the company 100k+

"Here's a question for the high and mighty contactors if you really earn what you are paid how come many businesses are getting rid of you? Answer: you were never more important to the company than other engineers you were just a flexible way of managing the number of bums on seats"

>> See you say things like this and I think you understand.. yes you are exactly right CONTRACTORS ARE A FLEXIBLE RESOURCE THAT CAN BE BROUGHT IN FOR SHORT PERIODS TO FILL SKILL OR RESOURCE GAPS, I dont think its true that companies are getting rid of us, Ive had more interest in 2021/21 than in previous years, if anything companies are moving more towards contractors for project work and perm staff for support work (at least that has been my experience).

"So now we've got rid of the notion that you have somehow earned the right to be paid more and pay less tax then everyone else please explain how allowing this tax dodging helps anyone but the contractors? I want too is not a mature arguement..."

>> and you screw it up again, you were so close...

Where are you getting this notion that its an earned right?

To answer your question, I get paid more because that's what I tell clients (like your employer) that I want to be paid and they value the work enough to pay it, if you are unhappy with what you are paid then take it up with your employer, its not the fault of contractors that you don't think you are paid enough, the company can obviously afford it if they are hiring these contractors on so much more money than you...

As for the tax, again, if its within the law its not tax dodging, I pay exactly what I have to, no more, no less.

Ill bet if the next budget put income tax up by 5% you'd throw a shit fit... lets not pretend that this is about how much tax we pay, you've made it abundantly clear in your comments that your problem is that we get paid more than you. Guess what, inside IR35 we still take home more than a permie doing the same job... Its not fair but clearly companies value having flexible resources and are prepared to pay for them.


Re: All the same to me


Yes, spot on, this is WHY we get paid more.. we have to cover our own holiday pay, sick pay, Maternity, Bank holidays etc...

But when we go inside IR35 we don't get the extra money to pay ourselves holiday pay, sick pay etc and we certainly don't get it from the employers..

I'd be perfectly happy inside IR35 with Holiday Pay and Sick Pay covered by the employer, but thats not what we get, we end up with the worst of both, higher tax and no employee benefits.

As an example, I could get a Perm job paying 60k a year (net of approx 4k a month), I could also get an equivalent inside IR35 contract on 375 a day which also gives a net of 4k a month.

But as an employee I'd have pension contributions, holiday pay, sickness cover etc... So where is the incentive? I mean, I still do it because I like the lifestyle, I like changing where I work regularly (2-3 times a year).

As for this : "Contractors make the choice to loose stability and benefits and instead take themselves out of the tax system by keeping the money themselves "

You know we pay tax too right?

In my last perm job I paid about 10k a year in tax, Im now paying 20-30k a year.. We do pay tax, its just worked out a bit differently so the % looks a bit unfair.

Ive said it before and Ill say it again, HMRC makes more from contractors even outside IR35 than they do from permanent employees.

"To someone on PAYE all tax dodging is tax dodging"

I seriously hope you dont have a salary sacrifice pension or student loan payment if thats your attitude... or does that not count because thats a good form of tax dodging?


The details I saw said it was Nat West over a three year period around 2012/13

Even if it was a public sector client, The public sector rules only changed in 2016 so no, this is an old investigation that has been bubbling away for some time.


Re: Chasing the little guy...

Sorry mate, Im not picking on you, but you seem to have commented on every comment I posted yesterday...

"The same tax breaks that ordinary people get are available to wealthier people, but there are loads of loop holes that wealthy people get that ordinary people don't."

>> I have so many questions.

1. Define wealthy.

2. What tax breaks do contractors get that "ordinary" people cant? (Bearing in mind that anyone can start contracting, its scarily easy to set up a company).

"This feels like such a typical logical assignment statement I struggle to believe that you don't get it but think you deserve to be in the tech sector."

>> worthy? Your previous comment about testers had a bit of a tone to it where I got the impression that you looked down on them, I just ignored it.. but now you think that there are people who are "worthy" and I assume "unworthy" of being in the tech sector?

Who exactly judges this worthiness?

Is there an arbiter of tech?

Am I not allowed to work in IT because I want to do contract work? Despite having almost two decades of professional development experience (and close to another decade just doing it for fun).

"Here's some free advice Google "union" and "intersection" they should help you understand the concept the all can have one of something without all having one of everything. It's not all that difficult really"

>> Again, You're really sending mixed messages here, the topic is TAX LAW as it relates to contractors working to limited companies...


Re: To be honest, I don't think this goes far enough at all

"No one benefits? I think you are only seeing it from one perspective, try thinking about the employees pov: make it harder to employ temp staff and the company will have to look after its perm staff better!"

>> Interesting, you're doing it again, blaming contractors for your bad working conditions.

Do you honestly think that its contractors fault that your employer isn't paying you what you think you're worth?

"Perm staff are in fact people, taxpayers and human effing being too didn't you know?"

>> But not the testers, you didn't seem to think they were worth much in your last comment.

"The contractors like to claim employees are just jelly the contractors get paid more,"

>> Yes, that is very much how you are coming across.

"However there's also the commoditization of tech employees. Business now generally treat all tech staff as if they are not really employees, once had a 2 hour lecture in a town hall about how in India and China they can make the staff work all night and sack them if they refuse."

>> Funnily enough, they can do that with contractors too, we don't have any employment rights!

"Contractors are a convenience, employees are the real life blood of a business."

>> I agree, employees should be treated well, and again, you seem really unhappy in your job I honestly urge you to find somewhere else to work, there are employers that will pay you well and treat you fairly.

"Carry on putting contractors ahead of employees, have all tech jobs moved to India and every business in the west closed then who benefits exactly? Not the Indians, because we won't have any money to paid them anymore."

>> This seems like an odd tangent unrelated to the IR35 discussion so I'm not going to get involved in this one, I don't see a connection between contractors and offshoring development and I don't see why you think that offshoring will cause every business in the west to close.


Re: To be honest, I don't think this goes far enough at all

"The substitution argument is quite stupid anyway. Any employee who had been sick for a period of time, surely had a colleague taking over their duties. Does that make them self employed?"

There are some nuances to the substitution clause, the contractor would have to cover the costs of the substitute themselves and handle all training etc, from a financial standpoint the client is unaffected they still pay the original contractor and the original contractor pays the substitute, anything else isnt considered substitution.

But you're right, unless you are going to be unavailable for a considerable time (in which case you'd probably just terminate the contract anyway) its unrealistic to expect a substitute to be dropped in to cover unavailability for short periods.


Re: Good for HMRC

"If you pay a lower percentage of your income as tax than anyone else earning the same amount you are a tax dodger, says everyone who pays their fair share!"

>> But its the right amount as per the law, and that's what matters really.

"Contractor pay is inflated to begin with, don't give me some nonsense about how it works out the same, the same work I do goes for 400 or more a day as a contractor, I get a lot less that that"

>> I can see where the animosity is coming from now.

"but pay a higher total percentage in tax than a contractor doing the same,"

>> You pay a higher % (Marginally) but a significantly lower ££ amount.

I think you need to decide if the problem is that HMRC don't get enough tax ££

Or just that we get paid more in general.

IR35 only addresses one of these, you need to take the other one up with your employer.

My tax in my last perm role was < £10k a year, its consistently £20-30k a year as a contractor, So if I stop contracting HMRC lose money.

"I contribute my fair share, they don't, end of."

>> I love the "fair share" argument, you don't get to decide what my fair share is, HMRC do, I pay *exactly* as much as I have to and not a penny more, my accountant checks that its all within the current laws and regulations.

"So what I get one day off in 14"

>> Your working conditions are between you and your employer, if your employer is that bad change jobs.. You could even have a go at contracting, Apparently it pays really well and is very easy to do.

Of course, should you try your hand at contracting you wont have any issues, because even if the client determines that you are outside IR35 you will still put the whole lot through PAYE and pay 40p+ on every quid you earn?

"that doesn't make up for the contractors getting paid twice and taxed half as much as I do"

>> Its much less than twice and much more than half.

Once you take into account the total cost of employment of a permanent member of staff, even just the pension contributions Employers NI & Tax" employing a permanent member of staff is more expensive than just the Gross figure you see on your pay slip.

As for the tax, Ive never cared to work out what my overall % is, Its difficult because I dont take all of the money that my company gets paid out all at once.. but its probably somewhere between 20-30% of my gross (Thats a proper finger in the air guess) Assuming that you are in the lower tax bracket and have the normal £12k allowance Ill bet your overall tax % is ~19% Maybe a bit less depending if you offload money into a pension (Salary sacrificed and tax free of course).

"If that contractor wage was taxed with PAYE they would pay more tax, so compared to me and other employees they are reducing contributions, regardless of how much more in total they get paid than me. Where does the extra money go? In their pocket, not to the NHS not the police or to fight covid,"

>> In their pocket and then it gets circulated around the local economy as it is spent, We're not Scrooge McDuck, We're not just hoarding all the cash ffs.

"but to your second home and Tesla payments, grubby thieves!"

>> There's that green eyed monster again, I thought we'd seen the last of him.

Seriously though, I don't have a second home, I don't know a contractor who does, and Teslas are hardly the height of luxurious expense... I know permie staff who are driving round in significantly more expensive cars provided by their employers.. Again Speak to HR if you're not happy with your working conditions.

I have to admit I did once look at the cost of chartering a helicopter into the office once when I found out that my client had a helipad on the roof... but the cost was (shock) prohibitively expensive :)

"You are either directly benefiting from this clearly unfair situation, or you are not very bright,"

>> And we're into the personal attacks, that took longer than expected.

Bright enough to recognise a shitty employer and leave for something better...

"To give a specific example based on ability and contribution to the business: SW tester contractors get paid more than SW developers, which proves that skill and responsibility have less of an impact on pay than whether you a contactor or employed, how is that right?"

>> I'm not sure I follow your logic here, permanent software testers get paid about the same as

permanent software developers, its a skilled job, most of the testers I know ARE developers, they have different tools and goals but they write code just the same as the rest of us.

Even if they were inside IR35, they would still earn more than a permie they'd just pay more tax, We're getting back to the uncertainty about what you're really annoyed with.

Again, If you're not happy with your salary, I cant help you, speak to HR.

"It's either you get paid more OR you pay less tax for losing 1/14 days now both, contractors make a free choice to get both and still cry all over the internet about it."

>> Its not just paid holidays we lose, we also get no sick pay, no paid bank holidays, pretty much enforced unpaid leave over xmas, no pension contributions, no redundancy, no notice period, no job security, (Ive started work at 9 one morning and been sent home by 10 because the project has been cancelled, when was the last time that happened to a permie?)... We also have to pay for accountants & insurance, save enough to cover potential sickness & holidays. I think that list is long enough but its by no means exhaustive.

Like I said, I'm unclear if your complaint is that we don't pay enough tax of just that we earn more than you, you seem to swing from one to the other but mainly focus on the latter, so I guess your main problem is that you're not happy with your working conditions, I sympathise, I have definitely been there.

If you want to have a bash at contracting I'd be happy to give advice and details of agents and accountants, I don't hold a grudge because someone has a different opinion than me :)

As a bonus, if you do start contracting you will likely be forced inside IR35 now anyway so you wont have to worry about any of this (And you will *STILL* take home more than a permie).

Well, this has been a bit more of an essay than expected.. I'd better get back to counting that hoard of krugerrands I've been keeping in my swimming pool sized vault. :)

Have a good one.


Very unlikely to now too now that liability is with the client or fee payer contractors won't be getting targeted as much, easier to go after a bank with 100 contractors than one individual.


Definitely, there is no real incentive for clients to put contractors outside.. and quite a risk if they do so most clients are opting to put contractors inside.

I think what is happening is that because there is now more competition for the outside contracts it's pushed rates down a bit so some companies are taking advantage, taking the risk, and finally handling contractors properly.

Some are definitely just saying "everyone is inside" and having done with it... But not all.


Re: Looks like the new law is working as intended

They've been going up for the last 3-4 years contract rates on the other hand have hardly changed in 10.


Re: Chasing the little guy...

"The solution is simple just pull all your income into paye and nobody will chase you."

All income? Is this going to apply to everyone? Anyone getting dividends from shares they hold in a company? Should those be taxed as PAYE income?

Where exactly do you draw the line on what income is taxed as PAYE?

Unless you can truthfully tell me that you pay tax on EVERY single penny you earn, not take advantage of salary sacrifice pension contributions, never paid back a student loan via salary sacrifice or saved in a tax free Isa then I'll think that you're talking out of your hole and nothing you can say will convince me otherwise.


Re: To be honest, I don't think this goes far enough at all

"If you work more than 150 days in the year for the same client, you should be taxed as an employee."

Implement that and I guarantee that every contract will be 4 months long and no one will renew.

Literally no one benefits.


Re: To be honest, I don't think this goes far enough at all

The comments saying "let your wife have the job for the day" if anything just highlight how stupid that rule is, if a clause is in the contract we should get have to prove it's enforceable, it's a legally binding contract, the clause is enforceable by virtue of being in a signed agreement between both parties.

This ruling Means that we need to be able to demonstrate that the clause is enforceable so forces us to find ways to do that. Substitution exists so we can have someone else do the work in the event of illness or unavailability, in the 6 years I've been contracting it's never come up so I can't prove that it's enforceable.. so yeah, while it's fucking stupid, I might have to pay someone to come in one day and do some testing for me (it's the least domain knowledge intensive part of the role).


Re: Good for HMRC

I know you're a troll and I shouldn't... But... Go on, how exactly do full time employees subsidise contractors?

As for your comments about the NHS, his corp tax payments alone over those three years will have been in the region of 50-60k so there's that. How much tax do you pay a year?


What's funny about this is that because the liability shift with the new IR35 legislation it's actually less risky to be an outside ir35 contractor now than it was previously... There may be fewer outside contracts but they are definitely there (I'm working one now) so the run never ended, we just got some extra theater to make the permies feel better about it.


Re: I'm going to go out on a limb...

"you get very little job security as full time employee."

The mere fact that the furlough scheme exists contradicts that argument.


Re: I'm going to go out on a limb...

"But that doesn't entitle you to argue you should pay less than the tax you owe."

What's interesting about that sentence is "the tax you owe" I pay *exactly* what I owe every year, not a penny less or more, the amount of tax I pay is determined by my accountant who follows the HMRC guidance and applicable laws to the letter.

So I pay exactly *what I owe* but because you're not a contractor and can't do this (hint, you can, anyone can be a contractor) we will never agree on what the correct amount is, because you'll always think I should pay more.

It's quite telling that even contractors inside ir35 who ARE paying the same tax rates as a permie still get this mild abuse because they STILL take more home than the permies they work with.


Re: I'm going to go out on a limb...

"these days you've no more security in full employment than a contractor."


The move to three month notice periods for perm staff alone is enough to show that contracting is still riskier (even a 4 week notice period) is more than a contractor will get.

If you're really contracting you'll know that theres no pay without work and no guarantee of work so effectively zero notice period. When was the last time a permeant member of staff was told that the project they were working on was on hold so they had to leave *immediately* and would be called back when (if) the project kicked off again which might be days or months away?

I've had that happen twice now nearly say down for the day and told I might as well leave.

Once a company didn't pay me for almost four months... That never happened to me when I was permanent.

And covid, The company I was at last year when covid started terminated all contractors straight away and sent all full time staff home on full pay...

Contracting is clearly riskier than perm work for these and many more reasons.


Small point.

"with the judges agreeing he fell under the new IR35 off-payroll tax rules"

He didn't fall under the NEW rules, this investigation began before the new rules came into effect, otherwise he would not be liable.

Cloudflare stops offering to block LGBTQ webpages


"I think you'll find the porn category deals with your concern?"

Nope, doesn't have any impact on Google/bing/ddg image search


Well we best block *words* in general because I did a search for "otter vs bear" (I wondered who would win in a fight) and saw some particularly NSFW content.

Having just recovered from that shock, I decided to see what my favourite dam building mammals were up to.. I can assure you those beavers were not building any dams....

I had to go out for lunch because trying to find a baker that sold "Large Buttered Baps" didn't yield anything useful.

LibreOffice 7.1 beta boasts impressive range of features let down by a lack of polish and poor mobile efforts


Another thing, when the fuck did we implement the "if you're not directly involved in something you can't have an opinion on it" rule?


"I take notice the use of the passive voice. What have you done, specifically?"

Well I'm a software DEVELOPER so probably part of the problem in as much as I can make something functional but making it look nice and usable are not really my main skills (or concerns).

"Are you paying? Are you contributing?"

Not massively no, because the majority of open source software I use is maintained by large companies who put meaningful amounts of money in and contribute significant Development/design resource.

If you mean do I pay for open source software, yes I'll contribute to small projects to keep them going.


To be honest that heading "*** Let down by lack of polish" could apply to any number of open source efforts which is a massive shame because there are loads of really good open source alternatives out there that people will dismiss outright based on how it looks rather than how it functions (Or in some cases because it has a stupid name - I know people that outright refused to even try Gimp because of its name and a few that managed to look past the name, saw the UI and went right back to photoshop).

There needs to be some change in these OS projects to try to get more UX designers involved and engage with more than just the hardcore user base for feedback.

Its stupid, but a lot of the time even rational people will go for shiny and nice looking over functionality.

Traffic lights, who needs 'em? Lucky Kentucky residents up in arms over first roundabout


Re: Er ...

"easy to pronounce"

Just don't start it with an "I" or they'll still manage to screw it up.

We have never given census data to anyone – not even the spy agencies, says the UK's Office for National Statistics


Re: if you have something to hide, you have nothing to fear

"After an initial headline, in the Daily Mail"

I think the last part of that sentence might explain why its not happened.. The DM is hardly the best source for truthful information and "Illegal immigrants are stealing vaccines from OUR pensioners" is exactly the kind of clickbait shite they publish to get their readership numbers up.

That said, it sounds like quite a sensible idea to me, so I'm kind of torn, I cant imagine that the DM came up with an actual good idea on its own :)

Let's check in now with the new California monolith... And it's gone, torn down by a bunch of MAGA muppets


Does holding different views from someone entitle you to go and tear down and remove something that they have spent time, effort and money on?

If you believe that it does please post your address.

The exodus continues: Less than half of contractors expect to stick with their employment set-up after IR35


Re: Brexit +covid +IR35 time to near shore oneself?

Yep, Ive just commented above on the large number of contracts on offer at the moment in Europe.

Belgium and the Netherlands seem to have a lot going at the moment, fully remote.


Re: I'm not sure they're making more money off us either...

The thing to remember for everyone, is that it is VERY unlikley that a contractor will go into a perm role with a gross Salary anywhere near their gross contract rate.

As an example, where I live dev roles are around £45k-55k on average but contract roles at the same level gross £77k (Assuming £350p/d and 4 weeks holiday) so when most contractors go permie the % tax they pay goes up but the ££ goes down.

The only way for HMRC to win on this is for contractors to remain contracting but go inside IR35 and as the article shows this isn't happening on the scale that HMRC expected and once the dust settles the private sector will get its act together and do what the public sector did and start issuing more watertight outside IR35 contracts - You only have to go on the GOV gateway to see how many outside IR35 roles are being advertised now (Even working for HMRC themselves).


Re: I'm not sure they're making more money off us either...

Exactly, though the numbers are different (<joke>you either earn more than me or I have a better accountant.</joke> ) but it works out similar for me.

Should I go back into a perm role HMRC will make less in tax than I pay in CT on average (That's without factoring in Personal Tax and VAT).


Re: We are leaving

Yes, also there are a good number of remote roles coming up offshore.

There are loads on the IoM (Not sure how that works for IR35) but there are also quite a few in Europe willing to allow you to work remotely from wherever you fancy.

I know a few contractors working for clients on mainland Europe outside IR35 who have not left their houses for the duration of their contracts, its the clients decision as to whether they are inside or outside IR35 and when asked the client said "Que?".


Re: Given up and surrendered


Thats the problem, there is no requirement for them to do this, some clients will put you inside IR35 and treat you as an employee with the associated benefits some will put you inside and treat you like a contractor.

If you get the former you are either lucky to have found a good client, or they not realised that they are not obligated to give contractors inside IR35 these benefits.


"I believe It is an option to keep your limited company open"

Technically feasible, but I enquired about this while looking for a new role back in January and not one Recruiter or client was willing to take the risk preferring to use a "trusted" umbrella company instead, so technically possible but in practice its not likely to happen.

This is another issue for me, I do sporadic work for the NHS and a few local charities, its outside IR35 and totals a few k a year at most, its only profitable for me because my overheads are covered by my main contracting activities, if my main contracts go inside IR35 I'd either have to put the rates to the NHS up or stop doing the work for them because what they pay me currently would barely cover my insurance and accountancy fees.



It not really that simple though, because the way that we are being forced to work is to go through an umbrella - we wont be able to keep our limited companies open so that avenue isnt open to us.

You say "Put some money aside for hols etc" but thats what we do, My holiday and sick pay buffer sits in the company account until its needed.

Let me illustrate with a quick (very simplified breakdown)

Assume that someone is on £350 a day outside IR35, for simplicity I'm leaving off VAT and Expenses

Outside IR35

Billed amount (Gross) : £7000

Corporation Tax : £1400

Wage (PAYE) : £1000 [1]

Dividend : £2000

Gross Take Home : £3000

Net Take Home[2] : £2800

Leaving £2600 in the company to cover pension payments, sick pay, holiday pay, Accountancy fees, insurance, and putting some aside for the potential (inevitable) downtime looking for new contracts which can be several months at a time especially at the moment.

Inside IR35

Company doesn't exist so no billed amount and CT

Net Take Home [3] : £3740

So by your logic a contractor should take the £940 a month difference and use this to cover their pension payments AND put some aside for time off for being sick/holidays and for periods of being out of contract?

Its just not going to stretch that far, once you've taken a pension payment out it its pretty much gone, so where does the holiday/sick pay come from? Where's the contingency for the end of the contract where we might not work for 4-6 (or more) weeks?

I get that from a permanent employees point of view the headline £350 a day, £7k a month seems excessive and the personal tax % may seem low, but lets remember that rate to your employer doesn't change under IR35 - they will be paying the same amount for the contract resource (Maybe more because there will be an umbrella company in there taking their cut), all that's really happening is that contractors will be treated like employees for Tax but not for Benefits and based on the numbers in this article, the tax take to the treasury goes down because more contractors move into permeant positions and don't pay as much ££ tax [4].

The proposed IR35 changes only make the government more money if most contractors suck it up and remain contracting inside IR35, but we know this isn't going to happen, a significant amount will go perm or retire, a good number will find roles still outside IR35 (As has happened in the public sector where event HMRC are advertising for outside IR35 roles). So where is the benefit?

[1] In real life it would be a little less than this, but the annual personal allowance / 12 is easier to work with.

[2] This is a rough estimate based on the current dividend tax rate, not 100% accurate but not a million miles off.

[3] Pulled out of an online contractor calculator that didn't give a tax breakdown.

[4] Based on a role paying £45k which is about average for a permanent developer where I live (based on limited data gleaned from recruiters emails and LinkedIn jobs) my Annual PAYE would be around £6500 a year with NI of around £4000 (Total £10,500). But as a contractor my CT this year was £12k and paid around £2500 in personal tax too, at the same time I supported a local accountancy business and an insurance firm.


If these numbers are even close to accurate it pisses all over the governments projections of a 6bn increase in tax because (and I know this is controversial) but contractors pay more ££ (but lower %) than they would do in permanent employment.

My CT alone this year is almost double my PAYE for my last year in perm employment.


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