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FCSA Chief Executive, Julia Kermode responds to the government’s decision to delay the implementation of the off-payroll reforms in the private sector announced on 17 March 2020.
We welcome the news that off-payroll reforms have been delayed for 12 months, until April 2021. This is the right decision to help support businesses in these extremely difficult and unprecedented times.
It is right to enable businesses to focus on the immediate complexities of responding to the Coronavirus pandemic which must be the absolute priority for everyone in the UK right now.
However, we must reiterate that this announcement only applies to the reforms that were due to impact on the private sector from April 2020. The changes that were introduced to the public sector in 2017 are still very much applicable and will need to be adhered to.
Furthermore, we are aware through our evidence submitted to various government bodies, including the House of Lords, that some businesses have spent in excess of £700k in preparing for the private sector reforms which illustrates only the tip of the iceberg of the cost to businesses and the economy.
I very much hope that some detailed analysis of the wider implications of this reform can be undertaken in the coming months in order to establish whether or not it should be scrapped entirely, rather than simply ploughing on in 12 months’ time.