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Government consultation – National Insurance Contributions (NICs) holiday for employers of Veterans

The government is seeking views about a National Insurance Contributions (NICs) holiday for employers who hire former members of the UK regular armed forces. Under these plans, employers will pay no National Insurance on the salary of veterans they employ, for their first year after service.  The consultation is open until 5 October 2020, and HMRC would welcome further views from veteran employers and the veteran community.   The purpose of the consultation is to ensure that the policy is fit for purpose but views are also being sought from employers, software providers and accountants on the practical implementation of this policy, and from civil society groups and others who may have ideas and knowledge relevant to the initiative.

As the WEA knows only too well securing successful employment is one of the fundamental elements which allow those who have served in the Armed Forces to make a successful transition back to civilian life. The Government has stated that it is committed to ensuring that veterans have access to support should they need it throughout their lives, and also to ensuring that individuals leaving the Armed Forces are as prepared as they can be for this.  This proposal measure is one of a number which will hopefully demonstrate the strength of the commitment by the Government to creating the conditions for veterans to find and secure sustainable high quality employment. The measure, announced at Budget 2020 in March, will exempt employers for any NICs liability on veteran’s salary up to the Upper Secondary Threshold in their first year of civilian employment.

This relief will be available to employers from April 2021. From April 2022, employers will claim this relief through PAYE in real time; however, transitional arrangements will be in place for the 2021-2022 tax year.

This is an excellent scheme to increase encourage still more employers to recruit those from an armed forces background – please do consider contributing or bringing it to the attention of your current employer. 

To read or respond to the full HMRC consultation please visit https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/supporting-veterans-transition-to-civilian-life-through-employment