With less than a month to go before changes to National Insurance (NI) come into force, it seems that many people working in the entertainment industry have been asking the same two questions: am I affected and, if so, is there anything that I can or should do?
Before we address these questions, let’s get an overview of the legislation.
Under the current system, those working in film, TV, theatre, radio and commercial production are treated as employed for NI purposes and self-employed for income tax purposes. This enables low-income earners to qualify for state benefits such as Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA), which can offer vital income when between roles.
Forthcoming changes to the tax system could have serious financial implications for people working in film, TV, radio, theatre and commercial production. Tax and accountancy experts ClearSky Entertainment explain.
Under the current tax system actors, musicians, singers and other performers are treated as self-employed for taxation purposes, but employed for National Insurance (NI) purposes.
However, if proposed reforms go ahead, from 6th April 2014 every UK-based performer will be classed purely as self-employed.
The government’s move to repeal the so-called dual status follows a consultation by HM Revenue & Customs, in which an overwhelming majority (99.1%) of the 11,814 respondents supported simplification of the system.