HMRC Employer Bulletin: Brexit Edition
In September 2019’s edition of the Employer Bulletin, HMRC has focused on a variety of information that intends to support employers in preparing for Brexit. We have summarised the key information below.
The full Employer Bulletin can be accessed here.
Changes for UK employers sending workers to the EU, the EEA, or Switzerland
In the event that the UK leaves the European Union without an agreement in place, there may be changes to regulations surrounding UK employers sending workers to these areas.
Currently, the EU Social Security Coordination Regulations ensure that employers and their employees will only need to pay social security contributions (such as National Insurance in the UK) to one country at one time. However, if the UK exits the EU without an agreement, this coordination between them will end. This means that employers with staff working in these locations, as well as the employees themselves, will have to make social security payments to both the UK and the country in which they are working.
HMRC has listed a variety of ways in which businesses can prepare:
- If an employee is currently working in the EU, the EEA, or Switzerland under a UK-issued A1/E101 form, they will continue to pay UK NI contributions for the duration of the time shown on the form;
- If the end date on that form is after the day the UK leaves the EU, the employer will need to contact relevant authorities in these areas to confirm whether or not the employee must start paying social security contributions to that country from that date – The European Commission’s website will help you identify the relevant authority here;
- If an employee is a UK or Irish national working in Ireland, their position will not change after the UK leaves the EU, as they are protected under the international agreement signed by both countries in February 2019. You, as their employer, do not need to take any action.
- A replacement for the A1/E101 form will be issued for new applications after the UK leaves the EU, ensuring affected employees continue to make UK National Insurance contributions to maintain their social security record.
In this edition of the Employer Bulletin, HMRC has highlighted a new tool called the ‘EORI Mythbuster’. The recently published guide aims to dispel common misconceptions about Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) numbers, which is a unique customs ID for businesses that trade goods.
Download the PDF here.
Grants for businesses completing customs declarations
HMRC has announced that £16 million in grant funding is now available to help businesses train their staff in making customs declarations, and to help businesses who support others who trade goods to invest in IT improvement.
Businesses that are based in the UK, or have branches within it, can apply for this grant ahead of the UK leaving the EU. Further information on how to apply can be found here.
Further Brexit resources
You can stay up-to-date with important new information by signing up for HMRC’s Brexit alert service here.
HMRC are also are running webinars to help businesses get ready for Brexit. You can register online here.
If you would like more information on any employment tax related matters, please contact: Lee Muter, Employment Tax Partner, on 0191 243 6089 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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