Osborne sets date for Autumn Statement 2015

George Osborne will deliver his first purely Conservative Autumn Statement – and Spending Review - on November 25th.

The Treasury said the chancellor had asked the Office of Budget Responsibility to publish a new set of forecasts on the date, which was already set aside for the review.

The joint event will allow Mr Osborne to update the government’s plan on the economy but, for contractors, it will potentially report on the four proposals he hit them with in the Budget.

One of the four’s most far-reaching – to reform IR35 to make it “more effective” - could be built upon in the shape of a consultation on how the government wishes to proceed.

In fact, a services firm for contractors says that some tax experts are already prescribing an “antidote” in “anticipation of an adverse [IR35] announcement in the Autumn Statement”.  

But the firm’s boss, who will share the details with ContractorUK this week, might also share the terms of the IR35 ‘discussion document’ with the experts, who may be ‘jumping the gun.’

The government chose its words in the document carefully, saying that “if” it decides to proceed with reforming the rules, “any proposals will undergo a full consultation”.

And, the “timetable for further consultation will depend on the outcome of the discussion HMRC will have with stakeholders following publication of this discussion document.”

The Autumn Statement 2015 may also contain a move on pensions which, although not directly to do with the Budget’s ‘anti-contracting’ proposals, some see as ripe for reform.

In particular, Ros Altman, the government’s recently appointed pensions minister, is a vocal supporter of moving tax relief on pensions away from the very highest of earners.

Government departments are an even safer bet to get cut this autumn, as Mr Osborne warned in his Budget speech they would make up half of some £37bn in fiscal tightening.

Editor's Note: Further Reading on Autumn Statement 2015 -

Osborne warned against any cap on contracting

Reported plan to curb contracting 'unhelpful speculation'

'Warn your MP against any cap on contracting'

Contractors' Questions: How to prepare for Autumn Statement 2015?

Autumn Statement 2015: What one-man bands want

What contracting might look like after April 2016

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Written by Simon Moore

Simon writes impartial news and engaging features for the contractor industry, covering, IR35, the loan charge and general tax and legislation.
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