Others of these surprises, of course, will be less welcome. One of the least appealing realizations for many new freelancers in the United Kingdom is that a tax situation which was once relatively simple suddenly becomes much more complicated. In addition to having to keep up with far more in the way of tax regulations, many freelancers also find that their rates jump sharply, too.
There are good ways of dealing with these issues, though. One of the most common and fruitful has been the use of the umbrella company, an incorporated entity used by freelancers to accept income from clients on their behalf. By inserting these legal structures between their clients and themselves, freelancers are often able to restore much of the simplicity they enjoyed when they worked full time for a single employer.
A quick look at a uk contractor tax calculator will often reveal that an umbrella company can also lower rates. Consulting firm nyc income tax calculator points out that this can be just as important of a reason to establish such a company as a desire for a simplified tax situation. While not every freelancer will benefit in this second way, enough do that it is almost always worth investigation the possibility.
Of course, there are also some potential pitfalls to be acknowledged. One of the most common and threatening of these is the 2010 regulation known as IR35. Although not intended to affect the average, honest freelancer in the United Kingdom, the reality is that this rule frequently hits back at those who are simply going about their business.
What IR35 was meant to do was to give tax authorities a means of cracking down on employers who sought to abuse contractual work as a way of paying less for their full-time employees. The regulation identifies a whole category of "hidden work" that must be acknowledged as regular employment, and the measures it uses can sometimes pick out legitimate freelancers.
For those who are aware of the regulation, though, making sure that it will not be triggered is normally relatively easy to do. Dealing with IR35 typically means making a few extra arrangements, as by assigning a substitute that a company used for umbrella purposes can list in the necessary paperwork. With these precautions taken, few freelancers will have anything to worry about.