A poll among Work Your members, the online community for freelance and self-employed parents, revealed that they’re not impressed with the Budget, confirming the general consensus of a #downgraded Chancellor.
While some feel they will benefit up to a point with a rise in the personal tax allowance, the majority feel that the government is paying lip service to working families, with little that supports them now when they need it the most.
The cut in NIC Costs and Corporation Tax (reduced to 20%) for small businesses is unlikely to benefit Work Your Way community members who are mainly self-employed and freelance. Those who have registered limited companies will be on small business tax, which is already 20%.
Childcare Vouchers of up to £1,200 per child is welcome news, particularly if they will now be available to self-employed parents who were previously unable to benefit from them unless they were a Director of their own company. However, the vouchers will not be available until 2015, tantamount to dangling a carrot under their nose, and only if a family is not already receiving Tax Credits.
Additionally, parents with teenagers feel there is little mention of how the government will tackle youth unemployment going forward, which is now close to 1 million.
Nan Sheppard, a Freelance Writer says:
“It seems that as parents who work part time and/or freelance from home, we are not getting the support we need. You’re expected to either work mad hours and leave your child in care or in an after-school club (entitling you to vouchers to pay for it), or not work at all (and be entirely supported by the government).
Parents who are there in the afternoons for their children, helping with homework and cooking a healthy supper together can raise smarter, happier children. Parents who drag themselves home at six o’clock cannot invest as much time in their children. Which kids have a brighter and more productive future?
As a government, wouldn’t it make sense to invest in the families who are fabulous enough to want to work, while wanting to take the time to read bedtime stories and play counting games with their children?”
Mary Cummings, Editor of Work Your Way believes that the key to parents successfully juggling their finances once they become self-employed is to adopt the old-fashioned art of thrift.
“Once you make the decision to become self-employed, your income can become drastically reduced. Recent Child Benefit cuts has for many, exacerbated this even further, leaving them worse off.
If you are self-employed, there is little you can do but ensure you are claiming all the other benefits that you might be entitled to. Additionally, do seek the advice of an Accountant who can help you to reduce your tax bill with tax efficient options.
For household costs, shop around to ensure you’re getting the best rate and don’t be afraid to negotiate a better deal with existing suppliers – many suppliers would prefer to negotiate than see you go altogether.”
Budget 2013 – The Highlights
- Corporation tax main rate to fall to 20%
- Income tax personal allowance to rise to £10,000 in 2014
- Employers’ national insurance cut by £2,000
- Tax-free childcare vouchers worth up to £1,200 per child
- 20% shared equity loans for new build homes
- September fuel duty rise scrapped
Click here for the full highlights, including provisions which did not make the headlines, by Certax Accounting
Photograph by images of money, Flickr