When you become a freelancer you will be charging clients directly and that means that you will need to make your own arrangements for paying your tax.
Maybe as you read this you have worked for a company already where your tax is deducted by the employer via the PAYE or Pay As You Earn System. The employer calculates your tax contribution based on your income and deducts that amount from your pay so everything is done for you.
When you are a self employed freelancer however you need to keep your own records of purchases, sales and expenses, so that when you input all that into your tax return online, your tax contribution is calculated, which you then need to pay.
When you start to work freelance, you need to register as self employed within a certain time period. This also applies if you are working a paid job in addition to your freelancing work.
So no matter how small the income from the freelance work even if it is alongside another job, it is taxable income and that means you need to notify HMRC, keep records and complete a tax return or risk a fine.
Let’s pause for a moment
Ok so if you are serious about working as a freelancer as your main income or as additional income alongside another job in the immediate future or after graduation, then you need to get registered, keep records and fill out a tax return. As soon as you take on the freelancing job for the client get yourself registered.
On the other hand
If you are working with Solent Creatives for work experience and to enhance your CV then I would advise you to have a think about whether you want to register and declare yourself as self employed.
If you decide that it is not worth registering as it is only one or two client jobs then please let a member of the Solent Creatives team know and they will talk to you about that. So what would happen instead? Good question.In that case, you might consider offering your services for free. The all important thing is the testimonial from the client, adding that to your CV and having a great project that you can showcase to potential employers.
So please think very carefully about the need to register.
What you don’t want to do is invoice and get paid and not register as you risk a fine and the fine will be larger than the amount you invoiced!
If you need further information please visit the Solent Creatives office.