When you’re purchasing contractor insurance, you really are taking a leap of faith. You’re depending on that company to treat you fairly, to not hike up premiums, to help you if you need them to, and to not wriggle out of claims. For these reasons, you need to choose an insurer that’s trustworthy – not just in their own eyes, but in the eyes of their existing customers.
Being a freelancer is amazing. You work when you want, how you want, and for who you want. But there’s one little thing, one tiny, insignificant niggle that seems to bother most freelancers: getting paid on time.
A lot of clients are good and will pay when they’re meant to. There are even rumours of seemingly magical ones who pay (dare we say it?) early. However, there are far too many who let the payment due date slide by unacknowledged. For freelancers, this can make life incredibly difficult, but it can also be pretty soul destroying when instead of doing actual work, you’re chasing up clients again and again and getting nowhere.
This is bad enough no matter the time of year, but during the summer holidays it can be massively exacerbated by people being off work or working remotely more often. So, we’ve put together some suggestions on how to make sure you get paid between July and September, regardless of the summer hols.
There have been reports in recent weeks that some well-known financial service companies, including Morgan Stanley and HSBC, will cease to work with contractors outside IR35 rules once the reforms are rolled out the private sector on 6 April 2020. This is presumably so they do not have to go to the trouble of preparing for the reforms and ensuring the legislation is implemented.
This could result in contractors being issued with an ultimatum: become a permanent employee, operate through an umbrella company, or cease working with that client altogether.
Expenses can be the bane of a contractor or freelancer’s life. On the one hand, it’s great that you can claim certain things back to offset your taxes. On the other, it’s one more thing you need to keep track of.
What’s allowed? What isn’t? Are you claiming too much? Not enough?
It’s enough to send even the most conscientious contractor running for the hills. So, we’ve put together this quick guide to some of the most common queries, pointing you to the best resources.
It’s that time of year again. Everyone in the office is telling you where they’re going on their summer holidays. Kerry from Finance is off to Florida, Matt from IT is heading to Ibiza, and Jane from HR is going on a cruise around the Greek islands.
And you? Well, you’re a freelancer so if you can scrape together three or four days off together and all of your invoices are paid on time, you might be able to nab a long weekend somewhere. But wouldn’t it be nice to jet off on a holiday for a week or, dare we say, a fortnight? It might not seem possible with the busy, sometimes hectic, life of a freelancer, but we have some tips to help you on your way.
When you were an employee, your CV was probably just this thing saved somewhere on your computer that got dusted off and updated very occasionally if you decided to throw your hat into the ring for a new job.
Now you’re a contractor, your CV is constantly being updated and sent out as you pitch for new projects and this can often lead to it becoming unwieldly and disjointed. If this sounds like your CV, read on to find out how to spruce it up so it’s marketing you brilliantly to potential clients.
It seems to be a regular news fixture: large, well-known companies suffer massive data breaches where personal data is obtained by hackers. The type of business and nature of the data often changes, but the stories are always connected through how instantly recognisable the businesses involved are.
So, you’d be forgiven for thinking that as a small business you’d be safe from the interest of hackers. However, the truth is very different. According to the Verizon 2019 Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR), 43% of cyber-attacks target small businesses. In fact, attacks on small businesses make up the largest share of attacks in the report.
This suggests that small business owners are lacking in the resources and knowledge required to prevent such attacks, especially when we consider that 21% of the breaches were caused by error, while 15% were caused by misuse.
Contractor insurance can seem like a right headache to sort out. Let’s face it, it’s not exactly a glamorous expense. But you need to have it to satisfy agencies and clients, so you figure you’ll just go for the cheapest premium you can find and that’ll be that.
After all, you’ll never need to use it, will you?
Well… While we would hope your business runs completely smoothly and you never need to use it, experience tells us that some people do have to make claims. Unfortunately, if you’ve opted for a cheaper policy, this can be where you discover to your detriment that you get what you pay for.
IR35 reforms are set to hit the private sector in April 2020 and a lot of contractors are still none-the-wiser as to whether or not it will directly affect them. It can be hard to gauge because to know if it will affect you, you need to know if it will affect the businesses you work for.
We’ve pulled together a quick guide to help you understand if IR35 reforms will affect you or not. However, this is by no means exhaustive and we recommend chatting with your clients as well.
So, you were self-employed for a while, but then got lured back to the bright lights of regular employment.
Perhaps it was for a great career opportunity, perhaps it was for the guaranteed monthly salary, perhaps it was because you wanted to take advantage of a maternity or shared parental leave package, perhaps you were just sick and tired of doing your own admin.
Whatever the reason, you went back and spent some time as an employee and you’ve been enjoying it. Let’s face it, it’s quite nice not having to do your own taxes every year.