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The month in review: February News

We’ve rounded up the top news stories of February.

By Laura Nixon on 02 Mar 2020
Read time: 2 minutes


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The shortest month of the year now is behind us, and there are exactly 5 weeks to go until the much anticipated private sector IR35 reforms come into play. There’s also the budget announcement in little over a week, and much speculation around the future of the UKs flexible workforce and how they will be affected with this plethora of changes.

We’ve rounded up the top 4 news stories of February:

#StopIR35 – IPSEs campaign

The #StopIR35 campaign spearheaded by IPSE saw a crowd gathered outside Parliament, as well as an open letter being sent to Sajid Javid urging him to halt IR35 proceedings. This has been overshadowed by his resignation, as well as the publication of HMRCs final off payroll review.

The report confirms that the off-payroll reforms to the private sector will go ahead on 6th April 2020* as planned.

Parliament reshuffles cabinet as we welcome a new Chancellor of the Exchequer

February saw Sajid Javid step away from his position as Chancellor of the Exchequer, to be replaced by Rishi Sunak.

A quote from Sunak, expressed in 2016, outlines his view on self-employment in the UK: “The only way to fund world-class public services and outstanding infrastructure is to encourage the millions of British businesses that create the wealth of the nation – especially small businesses, family firms and the self-employed.”

IPSE has expressed their intention to “press Mr Sunak to truly support the self-employed by using the budget as an opportunity to halt the changes and conduct a proper, independent review into them.”

Extension of off-payroll reforms debated by House of Lords

The House of Lords Finance Bill Sub-Committee held discussions on the 20th February surrounding the extension of off-payroll reforms into the private sector, mirroring the public sector reforms of April 2017.

2020/21 tax changes

There are anticipated tax cuts that will affect some 30+ million taxpayers as NIC thresholds rise to £9500 – roughly translating into a £100 saving per year for the average employee.

Make sure you stay up to date with the budget announcement on 11 March on the Nixon Williams website.


* Update: at the time this article was written, the off-payroll (IR35) reforms were due to be implemented on the 6th April 2020. On the 17th March 2020, the UK government announced that it would be deferring the reforms to the 6th April 2021 to help businesses and individuals during the COVID-19 crisis.


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