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The Court of Appeal’s guidance on IR35 employment status

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The Court of Appeal’s recent decisions in the IR35 cases of Atholl House and Kickabout Productions give authoritative guidance on the application of the Ready Mixed Concrete and business on own account tests. Although HMRC won both cases the decisions contain much of benefit for taxpayers in the fight for a sensible approach to the employment status test. In respect of the business on own account test the court dismissed HMRC’s efforts to relegate the business on own account test as inferior to the RMC test and confirmed that relevant factors should not be limited to the four corners of the contract. In respect of the RMC test the Court likewise rejected HMRC’s arguments that (a) there should be a prima facie conclusion of employment if mutuality of obligation and control are found to exist; (b) these tests are binary; and (c) mutuality of obligation and control should...

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