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New freelancer with a query:

Discussion in 'General Forum' started by Anthony Or, Nov 6, 2014.

  1. Anthony Or

    Anthony Or New Member

    Hi, guys

    I'm currently working as a Freelance interpreter at the moment. Unfortunately, I just had a huge row with my dad, who thinks that I should have been claiming the full Income-based Jobseekers Allowance (£72.40 every 2 weeks currently) despite the sporadic income from my freelance job and if I don't resume the claim, he'll cut my access off (the reaction's a bit extreme I think and I reckon my dad takes things a bit badly and over-react at times).

    However, I disagree with him because the "Professional Conduct" part of the contract from the translation agency I'm working on behalf of currently says "Under the terms of this contract, the interpreters or translators are considered to be Self-employed and therefore liable to pay their own tax and national insurance contributions", but the translation agency has not told us how to declare it either.

    Meanwhile, at present, the JobCentrePlus advisor suggested that I should register on HMRC's website and I already got an e-mail stating that I should be getting my Unique Taxpayers' Reference number within the next 10 days (to declare as "Freelance"). At the same time, I'm also considering applying for other positions that are "full-time employed" at the moment. Currently, my earnings from the freelance interpreting job are a bit sporadic because the job is on a "deploy when required" basis and you only get paid from the scheduled start time until the end of the appointment at the location (the number of hours per week working freelance is very sporadic because I could get a couple of assignments in one week (if I'm lucky), or I could get no assignments for several weeks).

    The only other problem is that I'm not sure if the circumstances described above would mean that I would be eligible for a "Certificate of Small Earnings Exception" (SEE) or not though either.

    Looking forward to hearing your reply to this query.

    PS-It would be good to know for future reference, but I may not necessarily need the answer to the query if my Royal Mail Christmas Casual job at a sorting in December gets successfully converted to a permanent post after all. :)
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2014
  2. Alisonp

    Alisonp Member

    Oh dear, just found this one a few years late, but I'll post my experiences just in case it's of use for anyone else. I hope you got it all sorted out to your satisfaction.

    Remembering the time I was claiming JA between being made redundant and going full-time freelance, I do sympathise: I'm afraid JobCentrePlus just aren't (or weren't) set up to cope with anything that didn't fit nicely within their very narrow-minded framework. Possibly they may be a bit more enlightened now than they were, but I found myself having to jump through the hoops and apply for jobs I had no interest in and wasn't suited for when, in terms of getting me off the jobless figures, my time would have been far better spent approaching prospective clients and doing things that would be beneficial to setting up my business. I was doing freelance translation for part of the time (keeping well within the 16 hours I was allowed to work per week without losing my claim completely and having to start one all over again, from what I understood), and would be paid several weeks later, depending on what client I was actually working for. JCP were totally incapable of dealing with the fact that I wasn't being paid in the same week I did the work, and kept getting very confused with how much they were supposed to be paying me! I hope they're a bit more flexible by now, but somehow I doubt it.

    Anyway, from your point of view, I'd have assumed that as long as you weren't doing more than 16 hours a week you should have been receiving JA pro rata for the hours you weren't working. And you would indeed have had to register as freelance with HMRC and done a self-assessment return as and when required.

    Oh, and I understand that - in theory at least - interpreting charges should include travelling time and travelling costs :)
     

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