May 31, 2017
IPSE, the association set up to represent the needs of the UK’s self employed and freelance workforce, has released a manifesto ahead of the general election. In A Contract with the Self-Employed, IPSE details all the policies it wants to see the incoming government implement for the 4.8 million people currently defined as self employed or freelance. In conjunction with the ongoing Taylor Review into modern employment practices, the manifesto calls for a statutory definition of self-employment to end widespread confusion and ensure self employment remains an attractive and attainable career choice. The manifesto calls for a strategic review of the tax system – which, in its current state, is based upon the traditional employer/employee model. As self-employment continues to boom, the government needs to supplement this 21st century way of working with a fairer, more efficient, 21st century tax system. Included in the review, it has asked the government to make careful considerations before rolling out IR35 measures in the private sector, create a bespoke tax system for freelancers, simplify Making Tax Digital and maintain the current rate of NICs.
IPSE also wants to see improved pension provisions, fairer parental benefits and improved access to the Lifetime ISA. It wants to see more tax-deductible training for new skills and further integration of self-employment and enterprise education in curriculums. The manifesto also calls for improved infrastructure, faster broadband nationwide, incentivised use of workhubs and more powers for the small business commissioner.