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HMRC giving wrong expenses advice, says intermediary trade body

HMRC call centres have been mistakenly telling contractors they are entitled to key expenses, says employment intermediary trade body PRISM.

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The association is urging contractors to take independent advice in response to concerns over tax officials wrongly telling workers they are entitled to travel, subsistence and other expenses despite being subject to IR35 and Supervision, Direction and Control. The latest examples relate to public sector contractors operating through their own limited companies.

Crawford Temple, chief executive of PRISM, said: “This is the most recent change to the tax legislation affecting contractors and the mistakes being made by HMRC are causing confusion and further tensions across the market.

“This is more evidence, if any were needed, that the whole system of tax and employment legislation is too complicated for people to understand.

“If those within HMRC are giving the wrong advice because it is not clear, what chance does a contractor have who just wants to carry out sensible financial planning and get on with the job?”

The Social Market Foundation has been carrying out an independent review of tax and employment legislation, sponsored by PRISM, which is due to report soon.

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