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IR35 battle lost, but war continues

NIC clause gets through amid political in-fighting

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The controversy over disability benefit in the Welfare Reform and Pensions Bill has seen the first measure of the IR35 tax change pass through unnoticed. The troubled Bill -- lauded as the House of Lords' last stand -- was returned to the Commons for a second time yesterday, but this time without the amendment that a change in national insurance contributions for those working in their own service companies should be scrapped. Such was the attention and media interest paid to the disability question that the relevant clause, Clause 70, was not even discussed. As is custom, this meant the Bill was returned with it intact. Susie Hughes, a spokeswoman for the Professional Contractors Group (PCG), admitted that the battle had been lost but said the raised status of the PCG would help when the next element of IR35, income tax change, is discussed in the Finance Bill in April. ® Related Stories Hague gets bald with Blair over IR35 IR35 protesters march on Parliament

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