The chancellor has come up with a new wheeze to raise tax revenue: punish the self-employed.

For most people who are self-employed, life is tough. Oh sure, there are advantages, but the disadvantages are huge too. And thanks to the rise of the so-called gig economy, the army of the UK’s self-employed is growing.

Now the chancellor Philip Hammond is looking at removing one of the very small advantages.

When you are self-employed, you don’t get holiday pay. You can’t afford to be sick. Your employer does not contribute to your pension. And you have very little job security. If you lose a client, there is no requirement for them to pay you redundancy money, even if they are your only client. If your one and only client decides to re-structure, its self-employed workers go first, because it is easier to get rid of them – less legal obligation to follow certain legal, often highly expensive, procedures.

And now the chancellor is planning to hit the self-employed again.

He is already planning on rules to make the self-employed submit tax returns on a quarterly basis – fine if you can afford an accountant, not so good if you can’t, and you tend to leave thinking about tax to that one dreaded day at the end of January.

And now the chancellor is planning to increase the national insurance paid by the self-employed from nine to 12 per cent.

As President Trump might say at the end of his one of tweets – sad.

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