HMRC have recently launched ‘The Second Incomes Campaign’, aimed at employees who are UK resident and running a business on the side but not paying tax on the income. A second income could derive from:
- consultancy fees, e.g. for providing training
- organising parties and events
- taxi driving, hairdressing or fitness instructor
- making and selling craft items
- buying and selling goods, e.g. at market stalls or car boot sales.
To help taxpayers decide whether or not they are self-employed as well as being employed, HMRC have produced a seven minute video titled, ‘Do You Have a Second Income’ which takes individuals on a brief journey through the hallmarks of self-employment.
According to the video if you can answer ‘yes’ to one or more of the following questions then it is likely that you are self-employed:
- Can hire helpers at your own expense
- Risk your own money and can make a loss as well as a profit
- Provide your own equipment to undertake the work
- Work for a fixed price regardless of how long the job takes
- Make key decisions, i.e. control
- Work for a number of clients
- Rectify own mistakes at your own expense
If only deciding on employment status were that easy and can someone please tell the Status Inspectors!
Those affected can take advantage of this latest amnesty, ‘Second Incomes Voluntary Disclosure Opportunity’ to secure the best possible terms, i.e. a reduced penalty as interest will still be payable on the tax arrears. Taxpayers who ignore this opportunity could face an investigation, higher penalties or criminal prosecution.