From April onwards, the employment status of many contractors will have shifted. No matter whether you’re an employer, an employee or a contractor, having a thorough understanding of the new IR35 legislation is absolutely vital over the coming months.

With all sorts of scaremongering from the media and a shocking 58% of contractors having not yet received any communications from their clients explaining how they will respond to the upcoming legislation changes, it can be difficult to know where you stand.

However, if you’re fully informed and you know what questions to ask, you should feel confident when the IR35 reforms come into play.

Educating employers

Businesses that wish to continue working with contractors will need to determine the best approach to the situation, sourcing information from reliable sources and seeking additional help where necessary.

As soon as a vacancy arises, employers need to be clear whether the role will fall inside or outside of IR35 legislation. This is one of the first questions that we ask our clients, so that we can begin to build a better picture of who we’re looking for. And, if they’re not quite sure, we’re able to help advise them.

Supporting contractors

Contractors also need to be clear on all of the options available to them, particularly when they’re looking for their next job. Working with a recruiter can make this transition easier, and that’s why we continue to advise contractors on what the new legislation means for them – even after we’ve made a successful placement.

Internally, we’ve built a dedicated team for the rest of the business to use as a trustworthy resource. Sharing links to relevant webinars and HMRC updates with our community of contractors has been really helpful in explaining how the updates may impact them. It’s worth noting that there’s a lack of trust between contractors and HMRC, so in a sense we’re acting as a bridge between the two.

Business as usual

On one hand, it’s highly likely that many contractors could lose their clients, and vice versa – but on the other, this often comes down to a lack of education. 29% of contractors still aren’t sure whether they will be affected by IR35, and it’s leading many of them to look for permanent roles.

Nevertheless, if all parties involved are clear on whether the role falls within or outside of the new rules, there’s absolutely no reason why businesses can’t continue working with contractors after the IR35 legislation comes into force.