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View Full Version : Would you be an IPSE member if it weren't for the insurances offered?



DiscoStu
2nd September 2014, 12:59
Poll to follow.

eek
2nd September 2014, 13:07
went for the andyW option as I prefer to pay more and have nothing to do with the bunch of incompetent chancers who seem to be the leadership.

And I'm sorry to be so blunt but the latest name change and the justification for it is to target a market which is better served by a union or anyone else with a track record of actually doing things. And before anyone says opt-out can I add my :rollin: to the argument..

JustinTime
2nd September 2014, 13:08
Poll to follow.
No, it's a pointless make-work scheme for spotty interns, and unemployed grads.
HTH.

Member benefit = cheaper shopping?

Really, is that the best that they could do? Really?

TykeMerc
2nd September 2014, 13:12
went for the andyW option as I prefer to pay more and have nothing to do with the bunch of incompetent chancers who seem to be the leadership.

And I'm sorry to be so blunt but the latest name change and the justification for it is to target a market which is better served by a union or anyone else with a track record of actually doing things. And before anyone says opt-out can I add my :rollin: to the argument..

Indeed, re-branding of an unsuccessful organisation that far from having benefited the contractor community has saddled us with a bit of legislation that makes life harder.

Not seen any value added by the PCG or whatever absurd naming convention they prefer now.

Batcher
2nd September 2014, 13:21
Yes.

I don't go on the IPSE forums very much but I've had good advice on there in the past during my IR35 investigation.

As I've mentioned before, they saved me £52k from that investigation when HMRC had deemed me guilty of being inside IR35 and had helpfully sent me the payslips to return with a cheque.

For that reason alone I'm happy to put something back that might go to help some other independent, professional or self employed person fight HMRC. :D

I've never heard of anyone having two IR35 investigations so I would like to think I have a flag against my name and it won't happen again. I think it would be wrong to take the win and stop paying into the general pot that would help others following behind me fight IR35.

SimonMac
2nd September 2014, 13:48
For those who just look it as insurance, are there alternatives?

eek
2nd September 2014, 13:51
For those who just look it as insurance, are there alternatives?

Qdos Consulting - Taxation and VAT - Employment Law - HR - Insurance - Contractor Insurance - IR35 - PI Insurance (http://www.qdosconsulting.com/)

TheFaQQer
2nd September 2014, 13:54
I would consider it, but I would have to think very, very carefully. I'm not entirely convinced that IPSE is really the organisation for the way that I work, and I'm absolutely not convinced by the level of condescension that comes across in some of their communications. Maybe I missed it, but I haven't seen anything which discussed or addressed the 8% fee rise this year as well - it's probably on the IPSE forums somewhere, though.

£265 for the different insurances that they offer around business interruption seems quite reasonable, though - if I could find something competitive, then I wouldn't be with IPSE, it must be said.

As far as IR35 protection goes, I use Qdos anyway, so the only benefit is the insurance and the legal helpline. That said, the one time I rang the legal helpline about opting out and whether I could opt out now that I had been interviewed by the client and was about to sign the contract, they didn't know the answer :(

The rest of what they "do" hasn't made my life any easier that I can see - security clearance, ICT abuse, opt out...

TheFaQQer
2nd September 2014, 14:00
For those who just look it as insurance, are there alternatives?

Qdos do a lot of them, but not all of the scenarios that are covered by the business interruption insurance.

That said, I'd be interested to know the numbers of people who have successfully claimed against the "contract didn't match reality" policy.

Batcher
2nd September 2014, 14:18
Qdos Consulting - Taxation and VAT - Employment Law - HR - Insurance - Contractor Insurance - IR35 - PI Insurance (http://www.qdosconsulting.com/)

As I had the IR35 insurance with Qdos I contacted them initially when I got a letter from HMRC for a PAYE review (which I knew was a leader to an IR35 investigation).

After 4 years and 3 different Qdos people handling my case HMRC deemed me guilty. Qdos decided that the insurance didn't cover the £7k needed to take it to the commissioner for appeal and I would have to pay for that myself if I wanted to take the risk.

At the end of my tether I called PCG (as it was at the time) and they sorted it within a couple of months without having to go to the commissioners. HMRC said (paraphrasing) I was guilty but they would let me off on this occasion.

YMMV

v8gaz
2nd September 2014, 14:27
As I had the IR35 insurance with Qdos I contacted them initially when I got a letter from HMRC for a PAYE review (which I knew was a leader to an IR35 investigation).

After 4 years and 3 different Qdos people handling my case HMRC deemed me guilty. Qdos decided that the insurance didn't cover the £7k needed to take it to the commissioner for appeal and I would have to pay for that myself if I wanted to take the risk.

At the end of my tether I called PCG (as it was at the time) and they sorted it within a couple of months without having to go to the commissioners. HMRC said (paraphrasing) I was guilty but they would let me off on this occasion.

YMMV

And there's the difference. IPSE are not here to make a profit, and is of course a not-for-profit organisation. IPSE are there to protect contractors and independent professionals from HMRC and other attacks. You won't find anyone else prepared to risk a million quid taking S660 to the House of Lords.

wattaj
2nd September 2014, 19:27
Poll to follow.
Hmm, not much PCG love around here...
That's a shame as they genuinely believe that they trying to do *good* (pick your definition thereof), and they are the only non-profit in the game... Everyone else is looking to pick one's pocket in order to line theirs with a few shekels.

Don't get me wrong; I'm no PCG apologist... Just ask that insufferable oaf <insert PCG sock-puppet here> what my reputation's like in the other place... But I don't think that they deserve the level of derision that's been on display here this week.

ICBW; it's not as if it hasn't happened before.
:eyes

Zero Liability
2nd September 2014, 20:00
Qdos Consulting - Taxation and VAT - Employment Law - HR - Insurance - Contractor Insurance - IR35 - PI Insurance (http://www.qdosconsulting.com/)

There's also Accountax/AbbeyTax, but they're on a contract basis rather than annual policies.

DiscoStu
2nd September 2014, 20:16
Hmm, not much PCG love around here...
That's a shame as they genuinely believe that they trying to do *good* (pick your definition thereof), and they are the only non-profit in the game... Everyone else is looking to pick one's pocket in order to line theirs with a few shekels.

Don't get me wrong; I'm no PCG apologist... Just ask that insufferable oaf <insert PCG sock-puppet here> what my reputation's like in the other place... But I don't think that they deserve the level of derision that's been on display here this week.

ICBW; it's not as if it hasn't happened before.
:eyes

I posted the poll out of genuine curiosity. From a personal point of view I think the insurances provided are a really good value product, but I've no desire to see my hard-earned spent on re-brands, office space, events and an online MBA course I'll never use.

TheFaQQer
2nd September 2014, 20:56
That is a fair point. They were going to stick that one on all married contractors.

No they weren't. They were going to stick it on all married contractors who chose to split income. There's a big difference.

Old Greg
2nd September 2014, 21:00
No they weren't. They were going to stick it on all married contractors who chose to split income. There's a big difference.

Not on those married contractors who are both fee earners.

TheFaQQer
3rd September 2014, 09:24
Hmm, not much PCG love around here...
That's a shame as they genuinely believe that they trying to do *good* (pick your definition thereof), and they are the only non-profit in the game... Everyone else is looking to pick one's pocket in order to line theirs with a few shekels.

Don't get me wrong; I'm no PCG apologist... Just ask that insufferable oaf <insert PCG sock-puppet here> what my reputation's like in the other place... But I don't think that they deserve the level of derision that's been on display here this week.

ICBW; it's not as if it hasn't happened before.
:eyes

I'll preface this by saying in advance - this is NOT a rant or a tantrum, no matter how it may read to some :)

The challenge for IPSE (as I see it) is that they have 20000 "subscribers" (people who are there for some reason but aren't interested in taking part) and 500 members.

The question is why are those 20000 not involved more - what do they want out of the organisation? Why are they members at all?

Why is the turnout for the elections so poor - is it because people really don't care about how it is run, or is it something more basic like not understanding exactly what they are voting for? Is it because people see it as the same old faces each time? As has been shown in the IPSE fora, I have no real understanding of how the organisation is governed and what the CC do (although I vote in the elections each time) - is that a shortfall on my part, or on the part of the IPSE executive / non-executive bodies, or a bit of both?

Ultimately, I think that people aren't clear on exactly what IPSE "do" - we've heard words of encouragement on things like SC clearance, opt out (disaster), ICT abuse, lobbying etc. - and yet the only real tangible, obvious success that the PCG had was with the Arctic case. There MUST be more that they have done, but if isn't obvious to people then there will always be some kind of disconnect between the subscribers and the few genuine members.

I'm holding judgement a bit on the direction that IPSE is going to take. Personally, I read the advert slogan of "Are you an independent professional or contractor?" a little off putting. Maybe I misread it and put an "a" before contractor, but my immediate thought was that the organisation was now implying that if you are a contractor (or see yourself as one) then you can't be an independent professional.

As Stu says - I see the insurances as good value for money, though, which is the primary reason for my membership. I don't like to see money being wasted, and I'm not convinced that IPSE have always spent wisely.

malvolio
3rd September 2014, 09:28
This makes interesting reading. (http://www.ipse.co.uk/about-us/history) Note the one about Family Business Tax; stopping stuff is sometimes as important as doing stuff.

JustinTime
3rd September 2014, 09:36
This makes interesting reading. (http://www.ipse.co.uk/about-us/history) Note the one about Family Business Tax; stopping stuff is sometimes as important as doing stuff.
I've already pointed out how disgraceful it is that PCG has been erased from IPSE's history. Lazy search/replace is no excuse. That one act is utterly shameful, and someone should get a kicking for it.

However, I doubt that will happen as the PCG circle-jerk into irrelevance continues apace.

Batcher
3rd September 2014, 09:36
I'll preface this by saying in advance - this is NOT a rant or a tantrum, no matter how it may read to some :)

The challenge for IPSE (as I see it) is that they have 20000 "subscribers" (people who are there for some reason but aren't interested in taking part) and 500 members.

The question is why are those 20000 not involved more - what do they want out of the organisation? Why are they members at all?

Why is the turnout for the elections so poor - is it because people really don't care about how it is run, or is it something more basic like not understanding exactly what they are voting for? Is it because people see it as the same old faces each time? As has been shown in the IPSE fora, I have no real understanding of how the organisation is governed and what the CC do (although I vote in the elections each time) - is that a shortfall on my part, or on the part of the IPSE executive / non-executive bodies, or a bit of both?

Ultimately, I think that people aren't clear on exactly what IPSE "do" - we've heard words of encouragement on things like SC clearance, opt out (disaster), ICT abuse, lobbying etc. - and yet the only real tangible, obvious success that the PCG had was with the Arctic case. There MUST be more that they have done, but if isn't obvious to people then there will always be some kind of disconnect between the subscribers and the few genuine members.

I'm holding judgement a bit on the direction that IPSE is going to take. Personally, I read the advert slogan of "Are you an independent professional or contractor?" a little off putting. Maybe I misread it and put an "a" before contractor, but my immediate thought was that the organisation was now implying that if you are a contractor (or see yourself as one) then you can't be an independent professional.

As Stu says - I see the insurances as good value for money, though, which is the primary reason for my membership. I don't like to see money being wasted, and I'm not convinced that IPSE have always spent wisely.

Sometimes people are just quite happy to join an organisation they feel is fighting for them without seeing the need to get too involved in the politics of running the organisation.

Just like a football supporter's club, some people join to be with like-minded people but don't care about the running of the club as long as the bus turns up on time to take them to the game.

SueEllen
3rd September 2014, 09:54
I've already pointed out how disgraceful it is that PCG has been erased from IPSE's history. Lazy search/replace is no excuse. That one act is utterly shameful, and someone should get a kicking for it.

However, I doubt that will happen as the PCG circle-jerk into irrelevance continues apace.

I actually agree.

Lots of organisations and businesses change their names however in their history/about pages they put they were originally called something else and why the name change occurred.

malvolio
3rd September 2014, 09:55
I've already pointed out how disgraceful it is that PCG has been erased from IPSE's history. Lazy search/replace is no excuse. That one act is utterly shameful, and someone should get a kicking for it.

However, I doubt that will happen as the PCG circle-jerk into irrelevance continues apace.
Pointed out to whom? PCG Ltd is still alive but now trading as IPSE so they have the same history... :tumble:

Then again they just updated a 400 page website with no service failures, something my current client has failed to do a few times now. A few semantic hiccups aren't exactly a threat to world peace. :happy

JustinTime
3rd September 2014, 09:57
Pointed out to whom?
Posts passim.

SueEllen
3rd September 2014, 10:00
Pointed out to whom? PCG Ltd is still alive but now trading as IPSE so they have the same history... :tumble:

Then why no mention of the name change in the history?

Changing a name isn't something to be ashamed off.

TheFaQQer
3rd September 2014, 10:01
Sometimes people are just quite happy to join an organisation they feel is fighting for them without seeing the need to get too involved in the politics of running the organisation.

Just like a football supporter's club, some people join to be with like-minded people but don't care about the running of the club as long as the bus turns up on time to take them to the game.

I think that it's more to do with people now seeing IPSE as a commodity that provides insurances (or whatever word you want to ascribe to the insurance-like products and services they provide) rather than a group that is actively fighting for them and achieving.

A 2% turnout (or whatever the exact figure was) is pretty bad, whatever spin people want to put on it.

TheFaQQer
3rd September 2014, 10:03
This makes interesting reading. (http://www.ipse.co.uk/about-us/history) Note the one about Family Business Tax; stopping stuff is sometimes as important as doing stuff.

The difference between the Family Business Tax and the Arctic win (for example) is that there is absolute evidence of the PCG influence in Arctic, but it isn't quite there in the FBT.

I'm not saying that the PCG didn't do anything towards halting the Family Busines Tax, but if you look at the website of the Federation of Small Businesses (and press articles around that time), they were the ones that were also taking credit for the win, so it's less clear-cut that this was a PCG achievement.

malvolio
3rd September 2014, 11:23
The difference between the Family Business Tax and the Arctic win (for example) is that there is absolute evidence of the PCG influence in Arctic, but it isn't quite there in the FBT.

I'm not saying that the PCG didn't do anything towards halting the Family Busines Tax, but if you look at the website of the Federation of Small Businesses (and press articles around that time), they were the ones that were also taking credit for the win, so it's less clear-cut that this was a PCG achievement.
There were several other bodies involved to be fair: the question is who got the ball rolling? Hint- it wasn't FSB.

Contreras
5th September 2014, 00:30
Why is the turnout for the elections so poor - is it because people really don't care about how it is run, or is it something more basic like not understanding exactly what they are voting for? Is it because people see it as the same old faces each time? As has been shown in the IPSE fora, I have no real understanding of how the organisation is governed and what the CC do (although I vote in the elections each time) - is that a shortfall on my part, or on the part of the IPSE executive / non-executive bodies, or a bit of both?

I don't know the answer to that, but TF hits the nail squarely on the head there.

I've been in an out of PCG a few times. Originally it was for access to the forums, then because there was a 'cause' to support, and latterly (and reluctantly) purely as IR35 insurance.

When a "management decision" intentionally 'outs' its membership (including former members) by publishing real names on their forum profiles, without so much as a whimper of warning let alone consultation, something is very wrong with that management. However well intentioned, it demonstrates a lack of regard for common sense, foresight, and an inability to listen. One could argue the same qualities that have brought us disasters like the BETs.

I might rejoin PCG/IPSE one day but, for me, simply being not-for-profit is not enough. Participation in the democratic process needs to improve considerably, and by that I mean much better than the ~10% as I remember it.

The 2% figure quoted in this thread is shocking if true. Please someone post the correct figure if it's not that bad.

malvolio
5th September 2014, 06:46
Posts passim.

And that helps how? Do you suppose IPSE pay any attention to these forums?

eek
5th September 2014, 07:11
Pointed out to whom? PCG Ltd is still alive but now trading as IPSE so they have the same history... :tumble:

Then again they just updated a 400 page website with no service failures, something my current client has failed to do a few times now. A few semantic hiccups aren't exactly a threat to world peace. :happy

Updating the HTML text on of 400 page website with no service failure is not exactly rocket science....

Personally knowing how :spel many of your members are I would have ensured it was proof read by someone or at least updated as issues were pointed out rather than just saying it ain't important..

malvolio
5th September 2014, 07:18
Updating the HTML text on of 400 page website with no service failure is exactly rocket science....

Personally knowing how :spel many of your members are I would have ensured it was proof read by some or at least updated as issues were pointed out rather than just saying it ain't important..
Once again, incomprehensible nonsense. Not point in discussing this any further. You don't like or understand what IPSE is or does, that's fine. We all have our opinions.

eek
5th September 2014, 07:27
Once again, incomprehensible nonsense. Not point in discussing this any further. You don't like or understand what IPSE is or does, that's fine. We all have our opinions.

You said keeping a website up was difficult when things are updated (it's not. It wasn't difficult in 1995, it's even easier now).

You said updating the text wasn't important (it is).

You then assume my dislike of your utterly amateurish and unprofessional behavior while "representing" IPSE in the outside world means you can discount the points I made above to be incomprehensible.

You are correct in saying something is incomprehensible here. It is incomprehensible that you cannot understand why people who develop and redeploy websites all the time think the website update could have been done better.

Here is some free market research for the IPSE. Do you want to know why I don't belong to the IPSE, as it really is very very simple. The clue is in how it's supposed representatives ( including but especially yourself) appear to many of the general public (and based on few drinks a few months back to many of the MPs you supposedly lobby).

TheFaQQer
5th September 2014, 08:17
The 2% figure quoted in this thread is shocking if true. Please someone post the correct figure if it's not that bad.

If you are still an IPSE member, you can get the exact turnout figure from the forums - I don't know whether I'd be breaking any rules if I disclosed it publicly here and don't want to further incur the wrath of certain posters and senior members.

This year seems to have had a number of problems with the voting system, and reading what has been said, there are tasks in hand to try to address those issues.

I have said on the IPSE forums, and I'll say it here, that if I feel that I can contribute more to the direction of IPSE than the current Council seems to, then I will be standing in the future. I just need to work on getting a 100 word backing statement from someone and two nominees between now and next year.

TheFaQQer
5th September 2014, 08:19
Here is some free market research for the IPSE. Do you want to know why I don't belong to the IPSE, as it really is very very simple. The clue is in how it's supposed representatives ( including but especially yourself) appear to many of the general public (and based on few drinks a few months back to many of the MPs you supposedly lobby).

Have you ever been a member of the PCG and aren't now? In all seriousness, it's factual information like this which can help identify why take-up and engagement are low.

JustinTime
5th September 2014, 08:24
And that helps how? Do you suppose IPSE pay any attention to these forums?
You, and I, both know that they do.
:wink

eek
5th September 2014, 08:46
Have you ever been a member of the PCG and aren't now? In all seriousness, it's factual information like this which can help identify why take-up and engagement are low.

Yep when it was first created. I left when I went permie and really cannot see any reason to return. And that was before the name change justification with which I have a fundamental disagreement.

I especially dislike the current name change argument that 1 aim is to target graduate freelancers where it is assumed they are freelance by choice. Yes they may be a fair number of them but all the ones I deal with would love to have a proper job... And as such protecting them from IR35 is both morally wrong (as its not what they want) and likely to result in cases that are very hard to defend.

You may think I'm joking but I am currently aware of a fair few call centre workers claiming that they are freelance while their hours and loo breaks are dictated by the end client...

wattaj
5th September 2014, 20:46
And that helps how? Do you suppose IPSE pay any attention to these forums?
PCG should be monitoring all channels for information on the market in which they operate, and they should be paying attention to what is said. Now, it may be the case that some of the contributors aren't really worth listening to (eh, readers ;) ), but that is a different issue. The main point is that any company should be willing to fight its corner in an open, and transparent manner, in order to bring some balance to the party.

#Tuppence.
:rolleyes:

Sysman
6th September 2014, 09:00
Then again they just updated a 400 page website with no service failures, something my current client has failed to do a few times now.

I can do that.

Gizza job.

Spill and grommet checking a speshulty :D

Lockhouse
6th September 2014, 09:09
Hi,

I've been a PCG member since 1999. A few years ago I had a dreadful IR35 investigation that my PCG insurance paid for and eventually won.

I'm not a huge fan of the way things are done at PCG Towers but I've no wish to engage and change things either so I can't complain. Looking at the IPSE website I can understand why they changed and it's probably a good thing in general.

I'm not sure that I'll ever be an active forum member again but if the chips were down and I had another investigation, IPSE, PCG or whatever would be the first people I'd call.

A