Coronavirus

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Re: Coronavirus

Post by jtc » Wed Mar 25, 2020 6:55 pm

$2tn confirmed in the US. The whole world will take a decade to recover from this.
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Re: Coronavirus

Post by PaulJS » Wed Mar 25, 2020 7:33 pm

Currently there is a danger of applying London appropriate measures to the whole country - calling for all construction sites to shut down because in London the construction guys use public transport is madness.

Having worked extensively in construction it is the case that outside of London most guys travel in by van alone and can mostly work with a good distance between them.

Plus, these guys are nearly all self employed and need to keep on working to get by.

If I were still contracting in construction I would be seriously p!$$ed off if I were shut down when it is entirely possible to keep going while following 'the rules" albeit things would progress a bit slower.

One size does not fit all!

Cheers,

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Re: Coronavirus

Post by Craig64 » Wed Mar 25, 2020 7:39 pm

StrapMeister wrote:
Wed Mar 25, 2020 2:23 pm
Laid off yesterday and seriously worried about the future being self-employed
...spending today making numerous phone calls and emails.

At least I have my health (atm) albeit my stress levels are through the roof....and breathe!
I share your pain (and that of others), being self employed with a small on line business, which I temporarily shut following the Boris Johnson announcement on Monday evening. Although the UK Government have moved increasingly quickly in recent days, they should certainly have put a financial package in place BEFORE announcing lock down for the millions of self employed people in the UK.

There will be many like me who currently qualify for zero existing benefits, who now have zero income, but still with regular bills to pay. It is just a matter of time before being skint and desperate.

On a positive note, it now appears that some announcement will be made tomorrow to address this urgent issue. Let's hope that it is a reasonable and fair set of proposals, in line with what "employees" have been offered.
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Re: Coronavirus

Post by Bungle-ator » Wed Mar 25, 2020 7:56 pm

So sad to hear of firms going under and people losing their jobs. It's not supposed to happen like this. It's going to take a long time for the country to find it's feet again when this is all over.

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Re: Coronavirus

Post by PaulJS » Wed Mar 25, 2020 8:09 pm

Tough times for the self employed ( me for many years and still technically am as director of a limited company ) but a difficult task to figure out an appropriate level of support with so many paying themselves the minimum to qualify for NI and then the rest in dividends, or leaving surplus money in the business account with an intention to cash out using entrepreneurs relief at some future date.

It will be interesting to see what the Chancellor comes up with tomorrow - probably the best way forward would be a grant of a capped 'living' income a bit like the salary support was capped at £2.5K a month for the employed. It's not possible to replicate income but it it is possible to provide enough to keep the wolf from the door, which I think what most reasonable people will be content with.

The one area where it should be easy is in construction where everyone is on CIS and therefore have their income level on record.

Cheers and all the best in these difficult times,

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Re: Coronavirus

Post by Craig64 » Wed Mar 25, 2020 8:42 pm

PaulJS wrote:
Wed Mar 25, 2020 8:09 pm
Tough times for the self employed ( me for many years and still technically am as director of a limited company ) but a difficult task to figure out an appropriate level of support with so many paying themselves the minimum to qualify for NI and then the rest in dividends, or leaving surplus money in the business account with an intention to cash out using entrepreneurs relief at some future date.

It will be interesting to see what the Chancellor comes up with tomorrow - probably the best way forward would be a grant of a capped 'living' income a bit like the salary support was capped at £2.5K a month for the employed. It's not possible to replicate income but it it is possible to provide enough to keep the wolf from the door, which I think what most reasonable people will be content with.
Paul
Hi Paul
I have to challenge some aspects of what you said here. A director of a UK incorporated limited company, is not classed as a self employed person. That director will be subject to PAYE, in the same way that employees are. Directors are considered as employees.

With self employed people, it is arguably just as easy to determine their net income, as it is with employees. Self employed people file tax returns detailing net income etc. So the authorities have computerised records of the self employed people's earnings.

Regardless of my comments above, I do agree with your suggestion of a capped living income. It needs to be kept simple but as fair as possible.
Regards
Craig

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Re: Coronavirus

Post by Bahnstormer_vRS » Wed Mar 25, 2020 8:58 pm

Changing tack; I've found out today about a COVID Symptom Tracker, designed to help slow the spread of #COVID19 and identify at risk cases sooner by self-reporting your symptoms daily, even if you feel well [-o< .

Further information and download the App at https://covid.joinzoe.com/

Currently only available in UK but expected to be launched in the USA within the next few days.

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Re: Coronavirus

Post by Craig64 » Thu Mar 26, 2020 12:24 am

Bahnstormer_vRS wrote:
Wed Mar 25, 2020 8:58 pm
Changing tack; I've found out today about a COVID Symptom Tracker, designed to help slow the spread of #COVID19 and identify at risk cases sooner by self-reporting your symptoms daily, even if you feel well [-o< .
Hi Guy
I appreciate your positive change of tack here.

However will such a daily self reporting “Symptom Tracker” be of any real benefit? You mentioned reporting daily symptoms even if feeling well. Surely if feeling quite well and fine, there will be zero symptoms to report. So I am a bit lost on that aspect. And how does such a system guard against people who inaccurately report symptoms, even with the best intentions?

It is my opinion currently, that we need to massively roll out reliable clinical testing on two fronts:

Both in establishing those who are currently infected with Covid 19, and,

In establishing (with the pending hopefully soon available antibody test), those who have had the virus and have survived the virus. Health care workers are crying out for such testing facilities, both for the benefit of their patients, and indeed for the health of themselves and their families.

It seems to me that only that way (by massively expanding reliable testing), will enable the authorities to get a an accurate assessment of the situation as it continues to develop.

Extensive and reliable clinical testing wiIl in my opinion, be key to defeating Covid 19.

EDIT: I am going to make no apology here for challenging comments made on this important topic.
This topic is vitally important, and at times we may disagree. Crucially, irrespective of view points, let’s all take maximum precautions to stay safe and try and avoid catching this cruel virus.
Regards
Craig

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Re: Coronavirus

Post by Bahnstormer_vRS » Thu Mar 26, 2020 12:40 am

@Criag64 - appreciate your comments and its right to raise the questions you have.

I'm not an expert on this subject and I don't disagree with you.

However, I do feel that its a case of 'every little helps' and the information/data gathered by the COVID Symptom Tracker will be made available to the NHS and other relevant bodies.

The primary reason I posted about it is that I feel, reading the information available on their website, it is a good idea and worth spreading the word on. I'll let you make your own judgement call as to whether you want to participate. I have.

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Re: Coronavirus

Post by Craig64 » Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:03 am

Hi Guy

It is good that we can discuss this properly here, challenging opinions and thoughts, without bad feeling.

I completely see where you are coming from. However, I remain very sceptical of such sites.
If in due course, the NHS endorses this site, and encourages responses, then I too, will participate.

If the site is genuine with its intentions, the NHS will give its endorsement.

In the meantime, I won’t be participating.
Regards
Craig

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Re: Coronavirus

Post by Lavaine » Thu Mar 26, 2020 7:12 am

A little levity (with a serious message), because we all need some lightness during tough times:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZIc71Nt52s
2017 CW Forum "Darwin Award" winner.

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Re: Coronavirus

Post by Thegreyman » Thu Mar 26, 2020 9:27 am

PaulJS wrote:
Wed Mar 25, 2020 7:33 pm
Currently there is a danger of applying London appropriate measures to the whole country - calling for all construction sites to shut down because in London the construction guys use public transport is madness.

Having worked extensively in construction it is the case that outside of London most guys travel in by van alone and can mostly work with a good distance between them.

Plus, these guys are nearly all self employed and need to keep on working to get by.

If I were still contracting in construction I would be seriously p!$$ed off if I were shut down when it is entirely possible to keep going while following 'the rules" albeit things would progress a bit slower.

One size does not fit all!

Cheers,

Paul
Spot on Paul. The sensationalism on the national news etc is frustrating if you work in construction, as I do. They talk about construction sites with 1,200 people on them. I can tell you there are probably only a single figure number of sites of that size in the UK. Many large (£50-100m) construction jobs will have a max of maybe 200-250 staff on them at the absolute peak of activity, and often much less than that. Many of our jobs have max 50-100 guys in large, often open, spaces. with appropriate measures (such as removing fingerprint turnstiles, using proper PPE, providing additional welfare and staggering breaks, additional cleaning, holding any safety briefings outside, risk assessing activities to ensure a 2m distance maintained) then it is possible to continue working in relative safety, hence the governement advice (although as always up here, a certain individual thinks she knows better).

Of course with subcontractor numbers of staff dropping due to childcare, self isolation/illness and increasing diffculty getting materials then it may well become more and more difficult to keep sites open in the coming days/weeks.
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Re: Coronavirus

Post by PaulJS » Thu Mar 26, 2020 12:17 pm

Craig64 wrote:
Wed Mar 25, 2020 8:42 pm
PaulJS wrote:
Wed Mar 25, 2020 8:09 pm
Tough times for the self employed ( me for many years and still technically am as director of a limited company ) but a difficult task to figure out an appropriate level of support with so many paying themselves the minimum to qualify for NI and then the rest in dividends, or leaving surplus money in the business account with an intention to cash out using entrepreneurs relief at some future date.

It will be interesting to see what the Chancellor comes up with tomorrow - probably the best way forward would be a grant of a capped 'living' income a bit like the salary support was capped at £2.5K a month for the employed. It's not possible to replicate income but it it is possible to provide enough to keep the wolf from the door, which I think what most reasonable people will be content with.
Paul
Hi Paul
I have to challenge some aspects of what you said here. A director of a UK incorporated limited company, is not classed as a self employed person. That director will be subject to PAYE, in the same way that employees are. Directors are considered as employees.

With self employed people, it is arguably just as easy to determine their net income, as it is with employees. Self employed people file tax returns detailing net income etc. So the authorities have computerised records of the self employed people's earnings.

Regardless of my comments above, I do agree with your suggestion of a capped living income. It needs to be kept simple but as fair as possible.
Yes, technically you are absolutely correct. However, in reality, many directors are the only shareholder and are 'employed ' by a company over which they have sole ownership and control. They are therefore employed by themselves in a roundabout way - I think it is semantics.

The point is that in order to work as a contractor you have to set yourself up as a limited company for which you work. This company only has the resources and revenue behind it that you, as the sole employee, generate. Granted, you probably qualify for the 80% salary grant but, given how the vast majority of contractors structure their income ( on the advice of their accountant) this won't help much!

I guess the point I was really making was that there is a danger that directors who take nominal salaries and top up with dividends will be hoisted by their own tax efficient petard!



It will be interesting to see what solution the government comes up with.

Cheers,

Paul
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Re: Coronavirus

Post by Thegreyman » Thu Mar 26, 2020 12:25 pm

IR35 rules determine whether or not someone is employed or self employed.

They see through the "veil" of using a PSC (one man limited company) and determine the relationship using key indicators. These rules were due to come into force in the private sector next month (already operating in the public sector) however have now been put back a year due to the current situation.
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Re: Coronavirus

Post by Thegreyman » Thu Mar 26, 2020 7:42 pm

Well the Chancellor announced the self employed support package. On the face of it seems comparable to that announced for company employees. Are there any self employed people on the forum, what do you think?

One thing he also hinted at was that going forward, there may be some equalisation/alignment of tax treatment between the employed/self employed as a quid pro quo of giving the self employed access to this money.
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