Eligibility - remunerative work (general): Self-employed earners (Info)
The qualifying remunerative work condition applies to self-employed earners in the same way as to employed earners.
A self-employed earner’s expectation of payment must be a reasonable one. The customer must confirm that the work is done in expectation of payment. It doesn’t matter that the self-employed earner might trade at a loss.
Hours counted for self-employment
The hours that may be counted as being spent in work by a self-employed earner include
- those that will be costed to the client as spent in providing the individual order or service
- those spent in activities necessary to the employment.
- trips to wholesalers and retailers
- visits to potential clients
- time spent on advertising or canvassing
- cleaning the business premises
- cleaning a vehicle used as part of the business - for example, a taxi or a driving school car
- research work - for example, where the person is an established author.
Self-employed seasonal workers
Where the person is a self-employed seasonal worker, you must establish whether a recognisable cycle of work exists. If the business continues to operate throughout the year, it will usually be a year.
You should include in the calculations, time spent on all activities connected with the business - for example, taking bookings in winter months, maintenance of property.
You should then average the hours over the cycle excluding the period when no work is done - for example, holidays.
Self-employed new starter
A self-employed new starter is a person who
- becomes a self-employed earner
- increased their self-employed hours to 16 or more weekly.
If the person is a self-employed new starter, calculate the hours worked based on the average number of hours the person expects to work in a week.
Allowance paid to assist in running a new business
A person may be in receipt of an allowance payable under certain schemes to assist them to become self-employed. This allowance used to be called a Business Start Up Scheme. This name no longer applies and schemes are likely to have local names.
An allowance paid to assist a person to become self-employed isn’t payment for work, although such an allowance should still be treated as a gross receipt where it’s received.