Question / Discussion HMRC and digital earnings -

Annie Beau

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From January 2024 , sites such as ebay, etsy and amazon are required to report ech sellers income from their site to HMRC. Within the link Ive provided, the gig economy is mentioned. I wonder f this will include survey sites such as Prolific and others such as shepper. There are so many survey and income generation sites that Its going to be a huge task and some of these companies, with a requirement to update their own systems to facilitate this will simply close down.

 
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EdibleDormouse

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This is an absolute minefield. How on earth are they going to separate out people having a clearout (no obligation to report) from fledging part-time small business sellers? As I know from (bitter) experience, the income levels - certainly at the start - are nearly identical.

I have to say, I withdraw things like Prolific into my business account anyway, but it might be prudent for people to have a separate bank account for online earnings now just to make life easier for themselves.

The impact on the sites themselves, as you say, will be horrific. And no doubt herald a further race to the bottom at places like Fiverr/PPH etc.
 
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Annie Beau

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Just noticed on the other site forum, Panelbase is closing.
 

Sherliarty

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It's almost as if HMRC don't trust us anymore! I actually think this will backfire on them and cost more than it will generate in taxes. As always they seem unable(unwilling) to go after the big fish that will net them billions so instead do this sort of thing.
 

Annie Beau

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I think whats partly tipped the scales for HMRC is the rise in takeaway / shopping delivery. The car park of my local retail park which has a McD, Subway and KFC is basically now a waiting area for drivers expecting an order.
 

mrcbo

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Yes it always seems to be easier to go after the little guy than chase people such as Bernie Eccclestone despite the amounts hidden being far higher...
 

homie

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I imagine it would be only be people registered as business sellers. What's the point in collecting and reporting data on Wayne selling his old Nike Trainers once a year? That doesn't help anyone, just makes an extra layer of bureaucracy.
 

Annie Beau

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Yeh, for ebay and vinted, those selling their own items wont be subject to this - if anything, it will likely push more people who should be a business seller into just listing their hundreds of tatty jumpers as a private seller.
I wonder how this iwll work with non uk such as appen and ....cant think what theyre called now, the one with the online mystery shopping.

Also, shopify isnt UK based so if someone has a 'side hustle; shopify site, I would think thats going to be more difficult to collect data as opposed to a UK based one such as ekm...or will it be the payment provider (worldpay, stripe, paypal) who has to report the income
 

EdibleDormouse

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I'll ask my cousin if she has any practical thoughts on this - she hasn't been a tax inspector for about a decade now, but she's still super clued upon "what you want to do is THIS".

She did once say to me when I first because self-employed that HMRC automatically assume that anyone who might work on a cash in hand basis from time to time is trousering around a grand that isn't going through the books. So no, they don't trust us.
 
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micameyerstarturn

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this confuses me because I was told I did not need to report my little £21 a month i got for doing surveys. I even asked Universal credit head office, they said no don't worry.

I was told not to register as self-employed too. Now I am being requested to produce bank statements and I am sick with worry. I've been doing surveys throughout the whole pandemic, a few odd surveys a month.

I did 1 car boot sale in 2019, ended up with negative profits. spent £25 on my booking and made £18.

I have about 10 health issues that are keeping me pretty much housebound at the moment.
 
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homie

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this confuses me because I was told I did not need to report my little £21 a month i got for doing surveys. I even asked Universal credit head office, they said no don't worry.

I was told not to register as self-employed too. Now I am being requested to produce bank statements and I am sick with worry. I've been doing surveys throughout the whole pandemic, a few odd surveys a month.

I did 1 car boot sale in 2019, ended up with negative profits. spent £25 on my booking and made £18.

I have about 10 health issues that are keeping me pretty much housebound at the moment.
As far as income tax goes you do not need to register as self employed or report anything for £21 a month, or the odd few quid from selling old crap at a boot sale or ebay. Not sure how it affects universal credit.
 

micameyerstarturn

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As far as income tax goes you do not need to register as self employed or report anything for £21 a month, or the odd few quid from selling old crap at a boot sale or ebay. Not sure how it affects universal credit.
Thanks for replying. I have been given different answers from the citizens advice bureau in the last week.
2 advisors said it's not anything to be worried about. 2 others said i have to report every £1 I make/earn/receive while on universal credit.

I am concerned that they might think i was trying to withhold my earnings from them for all this time.
 

Blackpepper1

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Thanks for replying. I have been given different answers from the citizens advice bureau in the last week.
2 advisors said it's not anything to be worried about. 2 others said i have to report every £1 I make/earn/receive while on universal credit.

I am concerned that they might think i was trying to withhold my earnings from them for all this time.
I have found this on the gov.uk site section on Universal Credit:
If you or your partner are employed, how much Universal Credit you get will depend on how much you earn. Your Universal Credit payment will reduce as you earn more. For every £1 you or your partner earns your payment goes down by 55p.
Rules are different self employment wise:
At the end of each monthly assessment period, you’ll need to report:
how much you earned from self-employment, even if it’s nothing.

It looks like you do have to or do need to report any money you do earn. However you aren’t employed by survey sites and so it’s all a bit difficult then as it doesn’t fit into being employed or their take on self employment which talks about being a Business.

To cover yourself in future I would just declare anything that you get money wise. They could just reduce your Universal Credit payment by 55p for every £1 you make going by what they say about receiving money when you are employed.
It’s very difficult though as you aren’t actually employed or self employed either. They could just count you as employed though because you aren’t self employed and don’t have a Business.

It’s extremely difficult for you when you are getting such conflicting info!
I would lean towards trusting what you have been told by Universal Credit advisors though. They should know their own rules more than the CAB.

Hope that helps.
 
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micameyerstarturn

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I have found this on the gov.uk site section on Universal Credit:
If you or your partner are employed, how much Universal Credit you get will depend on how much you earn. Your Universal Credit payment will reduce as you earn more. For every £1 you or your partner earns your payment goes down by 55p.
Rules are different self employment wise:
At the end of each monthly assessment period, you’ll need to report:
how much you earned from self-employment, even if it’s nothing.

It looks like you do have to or do need to report any money you do earn. However you aren’t employed by survey sites and so it’s all a bit difficult then as it doesn’t fit into being employed or their take on self employment which talks about being a Business.

To cover yourself in future I would just declare anything that you get money wise. They could just reduce your Universal Credit payment by 55p for every £1 you make going by what they say about receiving money when you are employed.
It’s very difficult though as you aren’t actually employed or self employed either. They could just count you as employed though because you aren’t self employed and don’t have a Business.

It’s extremely difficult for you when you are getting such conflicting info!
I would lean towards trusting what you have been told by Universal Credit advisors though. They should know their own rules more than the CAB.

Hope that helps.
Thank you for your reply.

Yeah I think that's what the universal credit staff where reading. The CAB said the same thing. They said I'm not employed or self-employed so I do not have to do anything. They said I have to reach the threshold of £1000 a year to report my earnings.

I wrote down the reference number for the last call I made to the CAB as proof, so they can listen to the call.

I have been sick with worry and waiting for someone from the law centre to call me this week to let me know if I have been given the right info and how I can defend myself if the info is wrong.
 
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Blackpepper1

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Thank you for your reply.

Yeah I think that's what the universal credit staff where reading. The CAB said the same thing. They said I'm not employed or self-employed so I do not have to do anything. They said I have to reach the threshold of £1000 a year to report my earnings.

I wrote down the reference number for the last call I made to the CAB as proof, so they can listen to the call.

I have been sick with worry and waiting for someone from the law centre to call me this week to let me know if I have been given the right info and how I can defend myself if the info is wrong.
That’s good you have clarity on it. Usually you would be allowed to earn a certain amount before you have to declare it. They don’t want to know about tiny amounts of money here and there.
Definitely keep proof though. It sounds like you have nothing to worry about.
 
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micameyerstarturn

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If anyone is concerned with getting some money while on benefits, I just spoke to the law center (free advice) and they said you have to get legal advice to look at your earnings and how many hours you have spent doing these surveys/focus groups/car boot sales etc.....

Getting any money while on Universal credit differs from someone who is not claiming benefits. So even if you do a car boot sale to sell your old stuff, you might have to report it.

The CAB seems to be confused by this.
 
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