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Self-employed IR35 (Off-Payroll) Contracts Masterclass

Recruiting top talent and a flexible workforce? Ensure your self-employed contracts are correct, watertight and legal with this comprehensive workshop for HR 

Time: 09:30 - 13:00  

Cost per attendee: £275 + VAT per attendee 

  • Tuesday 26th March 

With HMRC pursuing outstanding tax more aggressively, companies need to ensure their contracts are watertight and legal. Almost all tribunals arise from faulty contracts, so getting them right first time not only avoids expensive and time-consuming tribunals, it will also reduce the chances of an HMRC investigation.

"In my experience 90% of IR35 disputes with HMRC stem from problems with the original contracts" - Rebecca Seeley Harris

With recruitment still dominating the HR agenda, the freelance market is a key stream of potential talent that you should be accessing. 

We'll cover:

  • Defining self-employed status 
  • Contracts for services 
  • How to negotiate a contract 
  • How to prepare for an HMRC Investigation

Attend this intensive half day training and avoid the stress and reputational damage of getting your contracts wrong.


"The trainer provided very detailed answers to the questions from participants"

"Very insightful conference with some really good detail and understanding of the process"


Platform: Zoom - An encrypted zoom platform with password access:
Click here for further information and to test access 

Prefer to run this course In-house?

We offer this course as a face to face or online in-house training option, if this would be more suitable, please email

Which functions will benefit from attending



Welcome, housekeeping, aims & objectives for the day

Elizabeth Smith

Elizabeth Smith

Director of Research
Business Forums International Ltd. (BFI)

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Business Forums International Ltd. (BFI) logo

Elizabeth Smith

Director of Research , Business Forums International Ltd. (BFI)

Elizabeth is director of research and a founding co-director at Business Forums International. She is responsible for all programme content and writing, and researches current areas of interest for senior HR professionals in large organisations. BFI is the UK’s leading HR risk specialist conference and training provider, delivering key and timely information to over 3,000 delegates a year both through public and in-house training courses. Before founding BFI in 1996, Elizabeth specialised in researching corporate financial programmes in Asia and the Middle East, based in Dubai. She also worked in advertising and publishing in the Middle East and London. Elizabeth was educated in the West Indies, Saudi Arabia and Belgium before reading Modern Languages at Durham University. She is currently developing an online training course for line managers to raise awareness of menopause symptoms and ways that employers can work to make their workplaces more inclusive.

Defining self-employment status

Rebecca Seeley Harris, LLB (Hons) LLM MSc

Rebecca Seeley Harris, LLB (Hons) LLM MSc

Employment Status, Off-payroll & IR35 Expert
Re Legal Consulting Ltd

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Re Legal Consulting Ltd logo

Rebecca Seeley Harris, LLB (Hons) LLM MSc

Employment Status, Off-payroll & IR35 Expert , Re Legal Consulting Ltd

Rebecca is a leading expert and thought leader on employment status, off-payroll working and IR35 and is the author of CEST Explained.  Recently she won the Contracting Industry Influencer of the Year 2023 and last year won the FSB Self-employed Sole Trader of the Year.  She was also shortlisted for Outstanding Contribution to Taxation 2020-21 in the Tolley’s Taxation Awards for her campaigning work during the Covid pandemic. Rebecca set up her legal consultancy, Re Legal Consulting Ltd, when the Inland Revenue brought in the IR35 tax initiative some 23 years ago.  Since then Rebecca has specialised on IR35, off-payroll working and the employment and tax status of the self-employed and personal service companies. She works with clients nationally and internationally, the private and the public sector, with representative organisations and government.  Rebecca was seconded to the Office of Tax Simplification (an independent body of HM Treasury)  as a Senior Policy Adviser to advise the government on employment and tax status.  Reporting direct to the Chancellor, Rebecca was part of a small team of experts who drafted the Employment Status Review 2015 and the Small Company Taxation review [2016] leading on the taxation of nano companies and the self-employed.  Rebecca developed the concept of SEPA, providing a vehicle to the self-employed to be able to protect the family home.  Rebecca was also a representative on the Cross-Government Working Group on Employment Status and also published the review into the taxation of the Gig Economy. She is a member of the Tax Faculty of the ICAEW and is a consultant to the British Universities Finance Directors Group (BUFDG) and Urgent Health UK, amongst others.  She has recently written a book called CEST Explained which, as the title suggests, explains HMRC’s digital tool Check Employment Status for Tax.  Rebecca is often quoted in the press including the Financial Times, the Telegraph and the Times amongst others.  She also contributes to the professional press and writes articles on employment status. Rebecca has most recently started a campaign for the regulation of umbrella companies and the protection of umbrella company workers.  She does this voluntarily by drafting policy documents for the government to use to bring forward legislation.

  • The definition of self-employed
  • What types of self-employment are there?
  • Contracted-out services
  • Agencies

Defining contracts

  • Contract of service or contracts for services?
  • Understanding contract law
  • Types of contracts
  • Are Emoji’s legal?

Contract for services

  • Essential elements of a contract:
    - Boilerplate
    - Commercial Terms
    - Schedules or Statement of Works
  • Status specific elements of a contract:
    - Intent
    - Mutual obligations
    - Substitution
    - Exclusivity
    - Intellectual Property
    - Restrictive Covenants

Comfort break

Negotiating a contract

  • Contracts in practice
  • Whose contract?
  • Contract amendments and emails
  • What are the risks and how best to mitigate them
  • Separate considerations
  • Terminating a contract
  • Signed or not

Comfort break

Preparing for an HMRC investigation

  • What does an investigation entail?
  • Costs and penalties
  • What are you obliged to provide and when?
  • Choosing and working with an advisor
  • Consequences and mitigation

Wrap up and final questions



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