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Lords Finance Bill Committee evidence session to focus on the administrative and legal aspects of off-payroll reform


On Monday 2 March 2020 two panels of witnesses will give evidence on off-payroll reform to the House of Lords Finance Bill Sub-Committee.

The first panel will focus on administrative burdens that may be placed on businesses as a result of the proposed changes. The second panel will look at the issues around determining status under IR35 and the new rules, and the relationship between these tax rules and employment law status.

Giving evidence to the Committee at 3.15pm will be:

  • Bill Dodwell, Tax Director, Office of Tax Simplification (OTS)
  • Karen Thomson, Administrative Burdens Advisory Board (ABAB).

Questions will include:

  • IR35 rules were first introduced 20 years ago. Have these rules worked as intended?
  • Should the responsibility, as previously considered by the OTS, for applying the rules be switched to the client?
  • Will the new rules shift costs from HMRC to large- and medium-sized businesses?
  • How will the new rules affect the labour market?
  • Do you agree with the HM Treasury's claim that these rules will ensure fairness between employees and people working through Personal Service Companies?

Giving evidence to the Committee at 4pm will be:

  • Stephen Ratcliffe, Member of Legislative and Policy Committee, Employment Lawyers Association (ELA)
  • Keith Gordon, Barrister, Temple Tax Chambers
  • Caroline Colliston, Member of Tax Law and Policy sub-committee, Law Society of Scotland (LSS).

Questions will include:

  • What lessons can be learnt from litigation on the IR35 rules?
  • Are there enough safeguards to prevent end-clients from “false” employment findings?
  • How effective is the client-led dispute resolution process likely to be? 
  • Should small businesses be excluded from the new rules?
  • Will the Chancellor's reported promise of a “soft landing” in the first year help businesses to adjust?

These evidence sessions, which are open to the public, will begin at 3.15pm on Monday 2 March 2020 in Committee Room 1 of the House of Lords.

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