In 1975 Britain held a referendum in which it voted to remain in the Common Market as the European Union was then called. However, forty years later and the European Union has grown dramatically and so has its degree of control over its members sparking calls from all directions for another referendum to decide whether or not Britain should remain in the EU.
Due to the international nature of the work involved when you are a professional contractor, the vote on whether the UK should remain in the EU or not has a much more profound effect than on the average nine to five worker and experts have stated that they have found that many people do not fully understand the implications of leaving the EU.
The main concerns over a Brexit for contractors include;
- Whether businesses in the UK may relocate to remain part of the EU.
- What the impact on work visa requirements will be for UK contractors taking contracts in the EU if the Brexit occurs.
Opinion polls have shown that the British public are fairly evenly split on whether to leave or not, but according to a survey by The Association of Independent Professionals and the Self Employed more than three in five contractors said that they would vote to remain in the EU if the referendum was held tomorrow. IPSE also reported that only a quarter of their members would be in favour of no longer being in the EU and around fourteen percent were undecided.
Of the contractors in favour of the Brexit they state the regulatory burden of the EU and measures introduced to reduce competition between member states as the reasons for the exit. However many contractors in favour or undecided indicated that they would be convinced to remain in the EU if Prime Minister David Cameron’s reforms were accepted and implemented.
Whilst many of Mr Cameron’s reforms have been accepted some concessions were made and critics have argued that the final deal falls well short of what Mr Cameron originally promised. Campaigns on whether to leave or not will be starting and contractors are being urged to fully understand the implications of going or staying in order to make an informed decision come the planned referendum on 23 June 2016.