Review bid gets crucial boost from influential and campaigning politician

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A TRADE body’s call for a strategic review of the tax regime has received another boost - this time from a key shadow Treasury spokesman.

The SNP’s Roger Mullin hailed the plan as “modest and reasonable” after meeting PRISM chief executive Crawford Temple.

PRISM is calling for a review of the tax system affecting contractors in the hope it results in them being properly recognised by UK tax rules for the first time.

Until now the tax system has only allowed two categories of worker - the ‘employed’ and the ‘self-employed’.

Mr Mullin backed the calling, saying: “I have been campaigning on this issue, and will continue to do so until the government listens and acts.

“PRISM’s call for a review is modest and reasonable. The government should heed their call."

There are 4.6million self-employed workers in Britain but another army of workers known as contractors fall outside this definition and their numbers have reportedly swollen to 1.6million.

Mr Temple said: "Mr Mullin's help is most welcome. He understood the issues and how vital it is that the tax landscape in Britain catches up with the way working has evolved over the last few decades.

"His work will help to raise awareness and emphasises the need for a review that should finally give equal recognition to all types of workers."

It comes after PRISM, the employment intermediary trade body, secured the support of Shadow Financial Secretary to the Treasury Rob Marris who wrote to the Chancellor, also supporting the proposal.

Mr Marris wrote: “Successive governments have attempted unsuccessfully to refine the legislation.

“I agree with PRISM that it is now time for HM Government to commission a strategic review of this type of work, in the hope that this will lead to clarity and a simpler tax system.

“For some workers, it remains unclear as to whether they are employed or self-employed.

“The lack of legislative clarity over this distinction bedevils attempts to levy the right amount of tax, at the right time, and in the right way.”

Just days ago an independent review of self-employment for the Government highlighted the need for a simpler tax system.

Entrepreneur Julie Deane, founder of Cambridge Satchel Company, said ministers should move to simplify the rules.

Despite taxation falling outside her remit, she stated in her report: “Taxation was repeatedly raised by all of those interviewed – as an administrative burden, a barrier to growth, and an issue that could benefit from improved simplicity and better advice. Given the scale of concern I recommend that Government looks at this in more detail.”

Source: PRISM PR

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