People who began their contracting careers by working through umbrella companies may be counting their blessings at present, as a potential storm brews ever stronger around the Government’s plans to impose retrospective taxation on freelance contractors.

Those freelancers who have earned their daily bread through their own limited companies or personal service companies are set to be thwacked by the proposed legislation, Section 58 of the Finance Act 2008. Ironically, Exchequer Secretary David Gauke, who now supports the legislation, had been vigorously opposed to it while in opposition and had formerly been a trenchant opponent of retrospective taxation – historical facts not lost on the No to Retro Tax (NTRT) campaign.

The campaign is urging all contractors affected by Section 28 to write to their MPs using a template letter, urging them to press My Gauke into participating in a face-to-face meeting with NTRT representatives. Many of the affected contractors could become bankrupt if the proposal becomes law.

Referring to Mr Gauke, campaign chairman Alistair Renshaw did not mince any words. He said: “[He] pledged to review it if the Conservatives got into power, and despite the clear discrepancies in HMRC’s explanation for such punitive and draconian action against people who were only following the law as it stood at the time, the Exchequer Secretary has thus far refused to meet with representatives of the victims of this iniquitous legislation.”

NTRT is funded by donations from people who face a potentially ruinous clobbering from Section 58. Mr Renshaw hopes that as many as possible will write to their MPs to push Mr Gauke into a meeting, so that a “serious injustice” can be averted.

Any workers worried about this proposed legislation should call us as umbrella companies offer a safe haven!

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