Autumn Statement: Moving toward a ‘level playing field’ for Umbrella Companies?

The contractor marketplace is thriving and as George Osborne talked about a return to prosperity and cited statistics showing growth in the economy in this year’s Autumn Statement, we believe this will continue. Umbrella companies are fundamental in supporting flexible workers with an employment solution and contribute millions of pounds to the Treasury each year.

Announced in the Autumn Statement, there will be a consultation around Umbrella Companies and how they operate. Looking further into the detail, the consultation will seek to eradicate umbrella companies that do not offer employees basic employment rights. The use of overarching contracts and travel and subsistence schemes will also be reviewed with an announcement expected in Budget 2015.

Those using a compliant umbrella company such as ICS Umbrella should not be frightened of the consultation. We are confident that the umbrella ‘way of working’ is right but the non-compliance of some umbrella employers is simply unacceptable. We hope this review will assist in creating a ‘level playing field’.

As an IPSE Accredited Accountant and a member of All Umbrella Companies Are Equal (AUCAE) we fully support their comments responding to the Autumn Statement 2014 and what’s ahead for umbrella companies moving into 2015.

Andy Chamberlain, IPSE’s Senior Public Affairs Manager, hopes the Chancellor “ensures that any changes to umbrella companies provide real benefits to those using these structures and do not inadvertently affect the genuinely self-employed.”

Lisa Keeble from All Umbrella Companies Are Equal said “It will be a case of ‘watch this space’ to see what develops from the consultation but the hope is that the result will reflect the desires of the industry to create a level playing field”.