I.T. Consultant win against HMRC


An IT contractor has won an appeal against HMRC after HMRC said he owed more than £200,000 in national insurance contributions (NICs) and income tax under off-payroll rules.

Richard Alcock contracted with Accenture and the Department for Work and Pensions as a consultant via his company, RALC Consulting, between April 2010 and April 2015, working on the Universal Credit IT project.

In March 2017, HMRC determined that Alcock owed income tax and NICs of £164,482 and £78,842 respectively for that period. However, it is unlikely he would have had to pay the entire sum because of offsets for tax already paid.

In its ruling, the tribunal stated that it was "satisfied on balance that the hypothetical contracts between Mr Alcock and his end clients, DWP and Accenture, would be contracts for services (self-employment)".

Alcock won the case on the key tests of IR35 status known as Mutuality of Obligation. That is used to determine the employment status examined by all tax tribunals in IR35 as to whether a contractor is in fact a "disguised employee" and therefore subject to the provisions of IR35.

An HMRC spokesman said the department "is disappointed with the decision of the tribunal and intends to appeal".