Publication of IR35 Forum Minutes

07 November 2018

The minutes from the 30 August meeting of the IR35 Forum have now been made available on GOV.UK.

The minutes includes discussions on the way forward for the Check Employment Status for Tax (CEST) tool and mutuality of obligation (MoO).

Two possible options being considered are to include information about MoO on the CEST landing page, and to redraft HMRC’s position paper on MoO to include additional material. Differences remain in the interpretation of MoO between HMRC and some stakeholders.

HMRC and forum members agreed it would be helpful to expand on HMRC’s note on MoO to cover the competing arguments about the significance of continuing MoO where there is a succession of short engagements.

Forum members were of the view that CEST required some improvements to work more effectively in the larger and more diverse private sector. Areas of concern included: MoO; how CEST did or didn’t deal with cases where an individual had a range of engagements which suggested they were in business on their own account; and that it should reflect the outcome of litigation since its introduction in March last year. 

It was also suggested that specific guidance to help people complete CEST would be useful. One element being guidance on what information needs to be collected in advance in order to answer the questions; the second to provide further commentary to help with completion of the questions covering what they mean and their significance.

Also under discussion:

  • Interest on IR35 settlements

  • Off-payroll working guidance

  • Accounting for off-payroll

  • Update on agency/umbrella standards

  • Rights of appeal


The minutes and associated documents are all available to view on the IR35 Forum page on GOV.UK.