Working Through an Umbrella Company as a HGV Driver

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Demand for HGV drivers in the UK has never been higher.

The combination of Brexit, the Covid-19 pandemic and recently introduced IR35 reform in the private sector has led to a shortage of qualified HGV drivers, who now have an abundance of opportunities to choose from.

But because many HGV drivers work for themselves - whether sole traders or directors of their own limited companies - knowing how and where to source contracts is vital.

The role of the HGV driver agency

A popular way for HGV drivers to find work is via a recruitment agency. Working through agencies is often seen as a smart choice, given they tend to have access to the best contracts on the market.

Another advantage of sourcing work through a specialist HGV driver agency is that most of the leg work will have been done for you. In other words, you won’t need to spend time and energy searching for roles.

Given the current demand for HGV drivers, recruiters might even pick up the phone or email you with the latest roles, meaning all you need to do is nail your interview before getting started.

Umbrella companies form a key component of this relationship

Many recruitment agencies engage the support of an umbrella company, whose responsibility it becomes to manage everything from paying a HGV driver to ensuring all tax obligations are met.

So it’s clear that agencies benefit from using umbrella companies, but what about the HGV drivers themselves?

As we’ll now explain, operating through an umbrella company as a HGV or lorry driver offers a host of benefits.

HGV drivers enjoy the best of both worlds

When working via an umbrella company, drivers enjoy the best of both worlds - by this we mean they retain the independence of a self-employed worker but also receive employment rights, such as sick and holiday pay, along with a workplace pension.

This is because they are engaged under a contract of employment, as an employee of the umbrella company.

Your tax, taken care of

Better still, given HGV drivers working via umbrella companies are employees - albeit ones placed on temporary contracts - the umbrella will deduct the appropriate tax due on earnings before paying you. This means you have one less thing to worry about.

IR35 is not a consideration

IR35 is a tax legislation that aims to stop contract workers from operating as ‘disguised employees’. It exists to stop limited company contractors - whether HGV drivers or IT consultants - from avoiding employment taxes if their working relationship reflects employment.

Contractors whose assignment reflects employment are deemed to be ‘inside IR35’, where they are subject to PAYE tax. However, while working inside IR35 sees you taxed as an employee, it doesn’t grant you employment rights in return.

This is why umbrella working is increasingly popular for HGV drivers. IR35 doesn’t apply to umbrella workers, who are engaged under a contract of employment, meaning they receive employment rights in exchange for paying PAYE.

How Parasol can help

Parasol is a leading umbrella company, providing HGV and lorry drivers with a compliant service and one that has supported over 100,000 contractors and more than 3,000 recruitment agencies.

To learn more about how we can support your needs, please request a callback and one of our friendly experts will be in touch.