In Malcolm Tomlinson v HMRC [2017] TC05743 a taxpayer was unsuccessful in claiming employment for National Insurance contributions (NICs) purposes.

Mr Tomlinson was a double glazing salesman. His new accountant advised that he had a case for claiming that he was an employee for NICs. HMRC disagreed and the case went to the First Tier Trbunal (FTT).

  • He was paid commission only on his sales and commission was clawed back if he offered too high a discount or if the customer failed to pay.
  • His engager found the majority of his sales leads.
  • He worked in the company showroom a couple of days per week and sometimes wore shirts with a company logo.
  • He could take almost unlimimted holiday although he would not be paid for it.
  • He was able to use his employers equipment and software for preparing quotes.
  • There was no written contract for his engagement with his engager.

The tribunal found him to be self-employed: the risk/reward element being the most persuasive indicator.


Malcolm Tomlinson v HMRC [2017] TC05743