Last week’s autumn statement announcement included a number of items of note for employers. The link below offers an in depth explanation but we thought it would be helpful to summarise the key points below:

Potential increased costs for employers
Both the National Living Wage (NLW) and employers National Insurance (NI) contributions are set to rise in April 2017. The NLW will increase to £7.50 per hour for employees over 25. The NI change increases the earnings threshold to £157 per week and will amount to £7.50 per employee per year. On top of other measures already in place, such as pension auto enrolment, employers are likely to see their employment costs rising.

Salary sacrifice schemes
The government has targeted employee benefit schemes which offer goods and services via salary sacrifice. Whilst not banning the schemes, they are set to become significantly less attractive when subject to tax – effectively goods will be no cheaper through the benefit scheme than will be found on the open market. Employers may start re-thinking their benefit offerings in the future. Pension schemes, childcare, cycle-to-work programmes and ultra-low emission vehicles with CO2 emissions of up to 75g/km will be exempt from the changes.

Tax status of contractors in the public sector
If you regularly engage contractors or associates there are changes being made to how the tax status of contractors is determined for those that offer a personal service in the Public Sector.  Guidance will follow as to how this should be managed in future – worth keeping an eye on as the prevailing view is that the same rules will be applied to the private sector in the long run.

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Attracting talent for future Cumbria – Friday 13 January 2017. 
We have recently been supporting Cumbria CIPD who will be leading events in 2017 for HR Professionals and business owners to support them in addressing the predicted skills shortage agenda in the county over the next 5–10 years. The first event, Attracting Talent, will focus on delivering inspirational ideas, tools, best practice and practical advice on attracting and recruiting the best talent into our region and our businesses.

For more information and to book, please follow the link here

For more information, or to discuss how these changes may affect your business please do get in touch.