Tie IR35 red tape into a neat bow with Circle Protect.
Circle Protect is a comprehensive, insurance-backed (by Hiscox), bespoke testing tool created by leading IR35 barristers and ex-HMRC auditors. It enables you to continue using interim contractors in the normal way, with confidence that IR35 employment status has been assessed accurately and, more importantly, leaving you and your team free to deliver business as usual.
IR35 was introduced in 2000 to target disguised employment. It uses a series of tests to ascertain if people are disguised employees or genuine contractors/interims.
From April this year, the responsibility for assessing IR35 shifted from the individual contractor to medium or large-sized clients. It means you are responsible for determining the status of your flexible workforce. We’re therefore finding that hirers are facing uncertain times, not knowing whether interims are inside or outside of IR35, and worried that they’ll abandon critical assignments and that they don’t have the relevant protection in place.
“From April this year, the responsibility for assessing IR35 shifted from the individual contractor to medium or large-sized clients.”
How does Circle Protect work?
Circle Protect is a comprehensive, insurance-backed (by Hiscox), bespoke testing tool created by leading IR35 barristers and ex-HMRC auditors.
What about CEST?
One of the current ways used to assess IR35 status is the HMRC official tool, CEST. Users of this tool have said it’s a difficult document for contractors to navigate, with some contradictions.
Despite creating the tool, HMRC have attempted to distance themselves from it in recent court cases. In addition, it doesn’t cover all aspects of law, asks a limited amount of questions (16) and provides no detailed report.
How is Circle Protect different?
Our evaluation uses a multi-point risk scale to quickly identify IR35 employment status, complete with a due diligence report and pass certificate, coupled with access to an extensive range of support services, ensuring that you and your business (and the en re supply chain) has complete protection in one place. It is also consultative – meaning it’ll tell you which areas are making an impact on the overall decision – leaving businesses and contractors to make the decision on whether the key points are a necessity with the working practices of the assignment. The candidate is invited to take the assessment. Fifteen minutes later, a Status Determination Statement is obtained. Each contractor answers more than one hundred questions about their contract, working conditions and business circumstances, resulting in a comprehensive assessment. The Collaborative Assessments capabilities can be used to pre-answer some of these questions prior to the assessment being taken, reducing the administrative burden and increasing accuracy.
How long after an assessment will I get my result?
The client is instantly notified of the determination and can review and confirm the details online. The detailed analysis can be used to discuss and clarify any issues with the contractor. For contracts within IR35, the detailed Status Determination Statement can be released, satisfying any legislative requirement to provide reasons for the determination and also help to resolve disagreements. This part of the process shows which areas are having the biggest impact on an ‘inside IR35‘ decision. This leaves businesses and contractors in a position where they can decide if the key decisive points are a necessity of the working practices of the assignment.
Are there any other stages in the process?
Finally, due diligence documents containing the certificate and Status Determina on Statement are issued to the client and contractor. The entire supply chain is then indemnified by Hiscox.
For more information on our IR35 compliance services, please contact us today.
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