If you are operating as a contractor in the United Kingdom, you already know the difficulties you can face. Many people have found that there are a great number of things to be handled, such as IR35 and miscellaneous tax issues, insurance and administration charges. It can be a complicated process to take care of all these time consuming aspects of business for someone who just wants to do what they are good at. However, using one of the umbrella companies allows the contractor to function as a personal company without the hassle of spending valuable time on non-trading issues. The following outlines the features to look for when considering an umbrella company.
You may or may not know what umbrella companies can actually do for you. Firstly, you must understand that you, on paper, will be an employee of the umbrella company. You operate your business as usual but the umbrella company will invoice your clients and receive the payments. They will then pass on the payment to you, minus the relevant tax and expenses. There are a number of umbrella companies to choose from but you should spend time exploring which services each one offers. There are some key features to look for and these should be compared between the umbrella companies out there. Once you have investigated the various providers, you will be in a good position to make an informed decision on who to work with.
Initially, you should learn how to set up and maintain your account. The easiest way to do this is online. Your account can be set up within 24 hours. You will not be charged any set up or closure fees and you only pay the charges when working. Most of the top umbrella companies will provide liability and indemnity insurance coverage as standard. This is one of the major reasons so many people choose to sign up with an umbrella company.
Many umbrella companies will offer additional features, such as text message updates on payments and same day invoicing. Before you make a decision to sign up with an umbrella company, you can make use of online calculators to work out what your likely income will be. There are also reviews and references by previous customers to give you some idea whether the company is experienced and reputable. If you do your homework, you can find an umbrella company who can offer the best package for you.